This story is an installment of PBS NewsHour’s four-part series on “Junk News,” and explores who is behind creating inflammatory news sites, and why. Science correspondent Miles O’Brien profiles a leading purveyor of junk news, Cyrus Massoumi, who has hit the jackpot exploiting the trend toward hyperpartisan news. Why does Massoumi do it? He makes a lot of money and it’s easy.
After watching this video, classrooms may engage in a discussion about who has the responsibility to address the dangers of junk news. Is it the people who make the news, or the people who consume it? See support materials below for guiding questions and additional information about media literacy. This video can be played during a lesson on assessing the validity and identifying the purpose of digital content.