Thanks, #fakenews

“Journalism is often at its best during periods of genuine turmoil or uncertainty.”

The intrusion of fake news into the media ecosystem has been met with fear and outrage.

almar-latourYet fake news might trigger a good thing,​ too: A reminder of the extraordinary value of truth and perhaps a realization that, after much agonizing over the viability of the news business, there is a raison d’être beyond the accumulation of digital eyeballs.

Journalism is often at its best during periods of genuine turmoil or uncertainty. In occupied Europe, amid disinformation on the most extreme scale, truth was spread furtively on printed pamphlets, some of which evolved into leading news outlets of the post-war era.

We’re nowhere near there, but fake news still is a serious matter. Scolding social media platforms for distributing it misses the point. Endemic obfuscation requires even stronger reporting mixed with entrepreneurship — an opportunity to live up to the core of the profession.

The coming year will bring many changes. I hope one of them will be positive: the rise of vigorous and entrepreneurial quality journalism.

Almar Latour is publisher and executive vice president for Dow Jones Media Group.

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Sarah Marshall   Focusing on the why of the click

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David Chavern   Fake news gets solved

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Andy Rossback   The year of the user

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Jonathan Hunt   Measurement companies get with the times

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Michael Oreskes   Reversing the erosion of democracy

Ken Schwencke   Disaggregation and collection

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Jonathan Stray   A boom in responsible conservative media

Bill Adair   The year of the fact-checking bot

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Elizabeth Jensen   Trust depends on the details

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Steve Henn   The next revolution is voice

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Adam Thomas   The coming collaboration across Europe

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Almar Latour   Thanks, #fakenews

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Bill Keller   A healthy skepticism about data

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Ole Reißmann   Un-faking the news

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Mary Meehan   Feeling blue in a red state

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