Dear Donald Trump,
Not all news is fake news. Yes, there are some news outlets that report things that aren't true or have been distorted - but that doesn't mean every single outlet is like that.
Not all news is good news. The public has a right to know about what is going on in the world. Not all stories are going to be heartfelt and happy. Some stories cover drugs, murder, sex crimes and other things.
Believe it or not, journalists do have a code of ethics that we're supposed to follow. Yep, that's right. It's from the Society of Professional Journalists and has points that every journalist should abide by.
Some of the points of the code include "Take responsibility for the accuracy of their work. Verify information before releasing it. Use original sources whenever possible," "Never deliberately distort facts or context, including visual information. Clearly label illustrations and re-enactments," and "be accountable and transparent."
The keyword here is that journalists are supposed to follow the code of ethics. This doesn't mean they have to, but if you're a good journalist, like myself and thousands of others, you'll follow it.
Sure, I'm still in school and I'm learning, but it's my job to report what the public needs to hear. The public has a right to know about budget cuts, crime rates, any scandals that are being covered up and anything else going on in their community.
Just because it's negative doesn't make it fake. A good journalist always verifies sources and clarifies things that are unclear before publishing the story.
I'm assuming you're unable to tell when something is fake news. Don't worry, a lot of people can't.
One of the major red flags that indicate if something is fake news is that there are no sources cited. If no quotes are attributed and nothing is cited, it's likely fake.
Something you should always do when reading a news story is look at the website URL. If it has ".co" in the end, it's fake.
A simple Google search can tell you all the other ways to spot fake news. Surprisingly, it's fairly easy.
I'm not writing this as a hit at anyone, I'm writing this to say that most journalists follow the code of ethics and do what they're supposed to do. Just because there are a few bad ones out there who twist the truth or publish incorrect information does not mean we're all bad.
We're watchdogs for the people. It's our job to report on what we find out, good or bad. You would want to know where your tax dollars are going or if there was going to be an increase in your taxes, wouldn't you? You wouldn't have that information without journalists.
"Fake news" is real news if it's accurate, has sources and passes a fact-check test. Sorry, Trump.