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Why You Should Always Read Before You Share [OPINION]

People Gather To Watch Election Results In Times Square
David S. Holloway

Getting attention from a celebrity can definitely further your cause, but make sure you read before you share.

D.L. Hughley is very active on social media, which can be a blessing, and a curse. He’s not only a comedian, but he’s very socially active. When the Flint water crisis hit the headlines, he was one of the comedians who donated to the cause with the Comedy Get Down Benefit Show.

BEFORE YOU READ ON, UNDERSTAND THIS: this doesn’t fall into the “fake news” category, and I’m not chastising Hughley for being active with the water crisis. That’s a GOOD thing. However…

…on January 23rd, one week ago, he posted a story about 300 union plumbers showing up to Flint to install water filters.

D.L. Hughley via Facebook
D.L. Hughley via Facebook

It was shared over 95,000 times. Which is fantastic…except that the story is a year old. We had people Facebook us and tweet at us, thinking that it was happening now, and that the #FlintWaterCrisis was being fixed because of it.

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Having over a thousand people comment and 95,000 people share is great exposure, but this is an even BETTER example of why you should read before you share. The original article was posted on February 2nd, 2016. Obviously, Hughley is guilty of this, too: not actually clicking over to the article.

There’s a big to-do right now about fake news. Somebody sees a headline that hits them in the feels, and they share the story without reading it or doing their own research. Again, the aforementioned story is NOT fake news; it DID happen. But it’s still important to click over, read the story, read the date and do your own research. The only way we can prevent misinformation is to do our own digging.

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