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April 2018

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WHAT are the real implications of the entrenched era of Fake News, or Fake Information (FI)? How did it begin and where will it end? How can it harm society in general, apart from its immediate impacts on the country’s polity and economy? To answer such critical questions, it is important to understand the two facets of FI. The first is an initial vacuum, which resulted from media’s abdication of its responsibility—to put the people and public interest first. The mainstream media forgot about what the common man wanted to know, and the masses vanished from the mediated information. These trends were visible in India within the first decade of this century. The ‘Janata’ hit back. It extracted its revenge, and used and misused the growing and powerful social media to put itself first. Most information now stems from the public, and the latter took charge. Information media became truly democratised.

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