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Society

Gullible Greeks Swallow Fake News Fast, Fare Poorly in EU

July 29, 2021

Believing in chem trails, that COVID-19 is a hoax, that vaccines are a conspiracy to control them and relying on social media sensations, Greeks believe much of the news they don't believe is fake.

A survey by the Media Literacy Index 2021 found Greece was ahead of only eight countries among 35 in skepticism of news, and that's is particularly bad among the country's young who troll social media, not mainstream news sites.

Chief among their disbeliefs, said Kathimerini of the findings, is that the COVID-19 vaccines aren't safe or effective although they are and have worked to bring down the numbers of cases, hospitalizations and deaths.

In an era when former President Donald Trump called out everything he didn't like as “fake news,” quickly believed by zealots and acolytes, their faith in actual fake news is said to be compromising the fight against the pandemic.

Fake news proponents believe only their champions are telling the truth even if disproved scientifically, the phenomenon especially high among the less educated although prolific in other ranks as well.

In a bid to take apart misinformation and the outlets that spread falsities, a recent report by an independent panel of experts of the European Commission recommends teaching the young otherwise, the paper said.

Education and critical knowledge of the media and information should be a key dimension of school curricula, and should also be included in teacher education and lifelong learning programs, the report also said.

The last test in 2018 of the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Development and Co-Operation (OECD) PISA (Program for International Competition Assessment) showed young Greeks 42nd among 77 countries in achievement.

A special meeting Parliament’s Committee on Educational Affairs will discuss the topic of Education in the Media: Misinformation and Fake news, an international panel including Michael Bletsas, research scientist and the Director of Computing at the renowned MIT Media Lab.

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