Fake News And Whistle Blowing Policy: Public Assessment Of The Impact On Media Credibility

Project and Seminar Material for Mass Communication

Fake News And Whistle Blowing Policy: Public Assessment Of The Impact On Media Credibility


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

In recent time the government of Nigeria has embarked on a media campaign against the spread of fake news, the media campaign was lauched by the Minister of Information and Culture. This is as a result of the increasing nature of fake news used as means of political attack against the functions and programs of government. It is also noted that fake news is a matter of rising global concern, and for Nigeria which is a multiethnic and multireligious country, if not checked could lead to conflict in the coutry is left unabated. Fake news, is described as a type of yellow journalism or propaganda that consists of deliberate disinformation spread across the traditional news media and online social media. Tufekci, Zeynep (January 16, 2018). The spread of fake news is often caused by reporters paying people to generate information and stories for them. This action is referred to as an unethical practice called checkbook journalism. The goal is to mislead, damage the identity of someone for political or financial gains. The Whistle-blowing Policy was adopted as an anti-corruption policy to engender people to voluntarily disclose information about looted government funds, fraud, bribery financial misconduct, theft of government assets and any other form of corruption to the Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Finance. The policy provided a compensation package to any whistle-blower who volunteered information to the recovery of such funds. It is evidenced that since after the launch of the policy successful recoveries have been made. The study seeks to appraise fake news and whistle blowing policy; Public assessment of the impact on media credibility.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The spread of fake news has resulted in the damaged of the reputation of the nation. It is defined by the New York Times as a false story with the intention to deceive,” fake news creates fear and threatens the nation’s democracy. Fake news is described as a type of yellow journalism or propaganda that consists of deliberate disinformation spread across the traditional news media and online social media. This is a result of the increasing nature of fake news used as means of political attack against the functions and programs of government. It is also noted that fake news is a matter of rising global concern, and for Nigeria which is a multi-ethnic and multi -religious country, if not checked could lead to conflict if left unabated. On the hand the whistle blowing policy which was adopted as a means of engendering people to report to the government about stolen funds if not appraise could lead to fake news. There are evidences of success while some whistle blower propagates fake news. The problem confronting the study is to appraise fake news and whistle blowing policy; Public assessment of the impact on media credibility.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

The Main Objective of the study is to appraise fake news and whistle blowing policy; Public assessment of the impact on media credibility.

The specific objectives include:

  1. To find out the prevalence of fake news and whistle blowing on social media.
  2. To investigate the impacts of fake news and whistle blowing policies on media credibility
  3. To identify the possible solutions to the problem of fake news in Nigerian media.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. What is the prevalence of fake news and whistle blowing?
  2. What are the impacts of fake news and whistle blowing policies on media credibility?
  3. What are the possible solutions to the problem of fake news in Nigerian media?

1.5 Statement of the Hypothesis

Ho1: There is no significant solution to the menace of fake news and whistle blowing policies in Nigeria.


1.6 Significance of the Study

The study offers an appraisal of fake news and whistle blowing policy; Public assessment of the impact on media credibility; The study shall therefore serve as veritable source of information to stakeholders to proffer interventions which will address the problem.


1.7 Scope of the Study

The study focuses on the appraisal of fake news and whistle blowing policy; Public assessment of the impact on media credibility.


1.8 Limitation of the Study

The study was confronted with logistics and geographical factors.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Fake News Defined

Fake news, is described as a type of yellow journalism or propaganda that consists of deliberate disinformation spread across the traditional news media and online social media.

Whistle Blowing Policy Defined

The Whistle-blowing Policy was adopted as an anti-corruption policy to engender people to voluntarily disclose information about looted government funds, fraud, bribery financial misconduct, theft of government assets and any other form of corruption to the Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Finance. The policy provided a compensation package to any whistle-blower who volunteered information to the recovery of such funds.

Media Defined

The Media is the means of communicating to a large segment of people, such as television, radio and newspapers.


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