Google Wants To Teach Kids About Fake News

By James O Malley on at

Everyone knows that for every drop of insight on the internet, there's a metric tonne of bullshit stewing just below the surface. So for the 21st century, understanding how to figure out what's credible and what's fake news is going to become increasingly important.

And given that YouTube is responsible for hosting a lot of the nonsense, perhaps it is unsurprising that owner Google is funding a flurry of corporate social responsibility box ticking, in the form of a series of workshops called Internet Citizens, which will be aimed at British 13-18 year olds.

According to Google:

"The workshops will help young people find a positive sense of belonging online and teach skills on how to participate safely and responsibly, and use tools such as flagging and comment moderation to make the web better for all. Some of the specific topics include what could be done in response to offensive speech, fake news, echo chambers and how they could use video to bring diverse groups together."

In other words: Hey kids, don't bother watching those grainy three hour long videos of Men's Rights Activists "debunking" feminism.

The curriculum was apparently designed by experts from the Institute for Strategic Dialogue, as well as UK Youth and Livity - and Google has an "advisory council", er, advising, too - which includes the likes of the Metropolitan Police, thinktank Demos and a number of others.

Internet Citizens launches today in Liverpool, where we assume the first order of business will be debunking the fake news that Merseyside-born Andy Burnham is actually from Manchester, where he is standing for Mayor.