The chief executive of the the world’s largest company, Apple, is calling on governments to launch a public information campaign to fight the scourge of fake news, which is “killing people’s minds”.
Tim Cooke says that the ‘epidemic’ of false reports “is a big problem around the world” which requires a crackdown by the authorities and technology firms.
He believes technology companies should create tools that would help diminish the volume of “fake news”
The Daily Telegraph reports:
Made-up news reports trying to promote a particular agenda gained huge traction on social media in the US during the election.
“It has to be ingrained in the schools, it has to be ingrained in the public,” said Mr Cook. “There has to be a massive campaign. We have to think through every demographic.
“We need the modern version of a public-service announcement campaign. It can be done quickly if there is a will.”
The rise of fake news was being driven by unscrupulous firms determined to attract online readers at any cost, he said.
“We are going through this period of time right here where unfortunately some of the people that are winning are the people that spend their time trying to get the most clicks, not tell the most truth,” he said. “It’s killing people’s minds in a way.”
Tech firms, which have been criticised for doing too little, also need to up their game, he said.
“All of us technology companies need to create some tools that help diminish the volume of fake news.
“We must try to squeeze this without stepping on freedom of speech and of the press, but we must also help the reader. Too many of us are just in the complain category right now and haven’t figured out what to do.”