Voices Of Youth

​Critical to be smart consumer of info

In an era where social media has become a source of news, the problem of misinformation has become increasingly tangible.

Legislation against deliberate misinformation is merely a preventive crackdown on false news.

The most effective solution is to ensure that Singaporeans themselves can properly evaluate the veracity of the news they come across, reducing the chances of them falling prey to deliberate misinformation attempts.

There needs to be a greater emphasis on developing critical thinking in schools and among the population.

Diversifying our news sources can also help to reduce the risk of exposure to biased news.

Readers ought to be encouraged to consume news from credible local newspapers and news channels prior to turning to secondary sources, such as blogs.

They should also branch out to consume news from international media such as The Guardian or the Wall Street Journal.

It is critical that Singaporeans are equipped with the ability to differentiate and recognise authentic news from opinions, misinformation and propaganda.

We must not let the wealth of information become a bane instead of a boon.

Pamela Ng Wei Jing, 18

IB diploma student

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 11, 2018, with the headline '​Critical to be smart consumer of info'. Print Edition | Subscribe