That’s So 2018: The Year Fake News Became Deadly in India

Social Commentary

That’s So 2018: The Year Fake News Became Deadly in India

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

D

o you remember 2004, when we were encouraged to speak to strangers on social media, and all our news came strictly from the papers? Discussions on current affairs were idyllic back then. One party would say, “Did that just happen?” and the other would reply, “Yes, it did” and both would go back to listening to Britney Spears or whatever.

In the 15 years since, conversations about the news have become less small talk and more Battle of Thermopylae. It takes barely a few minutes for a discussion about politics to turn into trial by combat, with all participants pulling out 2018’s weapon of choice – vague-source-citing. This only ends when one concedes that the other has yelled louder, and leaves the argument dejected – but still determined to craft the Google search that eventually confirms his political views.  

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