Kāore he whārangi reo Māori mō tēnei. Aroha mai mēnā he raruraru ki a koe.

You grew up with the internet. Chances are you are good at finding information online--maybe even better than your parents and your teachers.

This webpage is here to strengthen your skills and build your awareness.

Misinformation online can be hard to spot. It can be camouflaged to make it hard to figure out what’s real and what’s not.

What is misinformation?

There are three different kinds of misinformation[1]:

Diagram illustrating the differences between Mis-information, Dis-information and Mal-information.

  1. Mis-information: Information that is false, but not created with the intention of causing harm.
  2. Dis-information: Information that is false and was created to harm a person, social group, organization or country.
  3. Mal-information: Information that is based on reality, used to inflict harm on a person, organization or country.

These kinds of misinformation can come to us in a lot of different ways. Not for Profit Organisation First Draft tell us to watch out for 7 different types of misinformation online(external link).

From least harmful to most harmful these are:

  • Satire or Parody Satire and parody are funny ways that we talk about what’s going on in the world. Satire and parody use irony, humour, and sarcasm. This means they can sometimes fool people into thinking they are real.
  • False Connection False connections happen when headlines don’t tell the truth about what’s in an article or when the caption on an image is misleading.
  • Misleading Content Misleading content uses information that is true, but in a way that makes you draw false conclusions. It might show opinion as fact or give you a set of facts designed to have you come to a conclusion that is false.
  • False Context False context is when real information is shared, but the information around it isn’t true. Real videos with misleading descriptions and images that really depict something else are easy ways to trick people online.
  • Imposter Content Imposter content is pretending to be something it isn’t. Videos, images, and even news stories can be faked online. Like the Imposter in Among Us, not everything online is what it claims to be.
  • Manipulated Content Manipulated content uses altered images, misleading video edits, or other altered content in a way that tricks you into believing something that isn’t true.
  • Fabricated Content Fabricated content is straight-up faked to trick you and to manipulate your emotions. Even whole videos can be faked using Deep Fake technology.

To learn more about the impact of misinformation check out The Eggplant | The Special Report Special:

The Eggplant | The Special Report Special | Bonus Episode


[1] This definition is from https://edoc.coe.int/en/media/7495-information-disorder-toward-an-interdisciplinary-framework-for-research-and-policy-making.html(external link) page 20.