Seen a gory video on social media and feeling enraged?
Stop. Pause. Breathe. Ask yourself some questions:
- Is it real? Are you sure it’s not street theatre, a clip from a film, an old TV advert, a video-game capture or manufactured propaganda?
- Is it new? Wasn’t the same clip making the rounds two years ago too, framed in the context of a previous conflict or crisis?
- Is it related? See #2 above. Are you sure it shows what people are claiming it shows?
If in doubt, screen capture the offending video and then run it through a reverse image search, such as those provided by Tineye, Bing and Yandex. More often than not, you will discover that all is not as it first seemed. Which brings us to point number 4:
- What is the benefit of forwarding this on? Or conversely, what harm will it cause?