Pants on fire. Lightspring
French president Emmanuel Macron’s recent pledge to make a new law to tackle perceived fake news has touched nerves in some corners with its potential impact on freedom of expression.
Fake news is nothing new – there have probably always been news reports that were deliberately inaccurate. But it was arguably rarer in the days before the internet because it tended to be prevented by media regulators, defamation law and newsroom editorial controls.
To some extent, that’s still true; in the UK, for example, the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) has handled 28,645 complaints regarding inaccuracy since being set up four years ago, ruling that its accuracy provision has been breached in 174 cases.