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Feb 1, 2023

The duty of companies to combat disinformation

Fake news, misinformation – words that unfortunately have become part of our everyday lives. In the face of the inescapable bombardment of information, and growing social unrest, companies must fight misinformation.

In today's world, fewer and fewer things remain constant beyond the unstoppable flow of information. What makes this even more problematic are the lines of demarcation between advertising, entertainment and information. With the rise of genres like “Infotainment”, consumers are in a constant struggle to distill the truth.

Adulterated News and Advertising

Digital marketing and advertising has become so sophisticated that some forms of it are almost unrecognizable as promotional campaigns. Brands care more about how they help customers along their life journey than the exact products. These processes made it more difficult to distinguish between contents. The sources are getting more and more obscure.

Unfortunately, with this transformation also came an increased sense of distrust. We are in an era where one cannot be sure whether the content we consume is credible, authentic, and has no other motives. In the case of fake news, this problem is magnified and leads to serious unrest, or even worse, to tragedy.

Distrust is bad for business

In the academic world, Internet literacy is at the forefront of contemporary education. It's time for companies to follow suit. Because if customers become so cynical that they stop believing anything, then real value ceases to matter.

Businesses have to fight misinformation. Because even if they are the most beneficial choice on the market, people will just see them as yet another empty promise. People will perceive impending catastrophes as hoaxes, leading to devastating crises. So it's time to act on these Corporate Social Responsibility goals and make an effort to educate the public.

Companies can react to these changes much more quickly than government agencies, and if they don't pay attention now, they could very well lose many of their customers to disinformation campaigns.

Honesty, Transparency and Community

Fortunately, communities are eager to join the conversation, to share their opinion on the topic. In many cases, they are prepared to participate in the efforts, if the opportunity presents itself and if the campaign is truly worthwhile. Companies need to capitalize on this trend in order to build trust, not just in their brand, but in society as a whole.

Organizations must demonstrate significant honesty, transparency and clarity about how they operate, what their goals are. In this way, consumers can become familiar with the corporation, and experience a meaningful connection with it, not just an empty sign of virtue.


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