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Understand the new environment we are all in regarding the fight for credible news reporting, and the lack of visible sourcing. Most especially, this is evident in the new distributors of news and information, that live entirely online, and have no legacy of respectable journalistic heritage, nor transparent pedigree of their writers and reporters.

When you realize this, you will come face to face with the reality, that finding credible news and information, is not simply about what you read that’s wrapped in someone’s crafty banner, catchy URL, self-stated mission, masthead, or attention-getting headline. It’s about what, and who, you proactively decide to trust as your source/s of news and information.

The temptation to click, read, share, and disseminate, provocative news we come upon in this new ecosystem is strong. I understand this. It’s so easy to pass along news, shares, online content, to any, and every social media feed we have access to. But, to do so, without qualifying, quantifying, or looking deeper to its origins, it’s sourcing, it’s depth of reporting, or any other checkboxes to gain context, is contributing, even if innocently, to the problem of misinformation and exaggerations that are warping our present day news culture.

There are millions of us who consciously, deliberately, pass on, and share, news and information that we believe in, and feel strongly about in trying to influence others, or to bond with our tribe. This is who we are, and have a right to be.

What I ask, and hope for, from myself, and online posters of all persuasions, on blogs, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and everywhere else, is to resist the urge to share any and all, news and info links that don’t show established journalistic roots, or traceable accountability for their content. In choosing what you read, and share, I ask that you make your decision on active, specific criteria in determining accuracy, and motive of the publisher.

This won’t be easy. You’ll need to accept inherent bias along the way. Don’t expect to be free of it, ever. But, if you dedicate to the truth, tarnished as it can be, not just dwelling on compatible positions, you will get through the weeds.

Do this, and it will help you to pick through the informational refuse littering our new, and misleading cyber ecosystem. It will help protect you, and all of us, from a dangerous and destructive atmosphere of continuous mistrust that is already pushing down on our airspace of communication. No matter who seems to be, or feels that they are, on the right side, that atmosphere will eventually suffocate us all.

We can rise above, and push through this muck. It just takes willpower, and work. Same as it ever was.