I’ll admit my bias right up top: I’ve found Snopes’ “fact-checking” of the satire news site the Babylon Bee extremely humorous.
But not until I saw a Religion News Service headline this week reporting on the kerfuffle between those two entities did it strike me that there might be a meaty news story there.
So kudos to RNS for doing what the best journalists do: seeing a scenario that a lot of people are talking about, and maybe even chuckling over, and recognizing an opportunity to present the facts in impartial manner.
Hey, I know I’m interested in knowing more about this clash.
Let’s start at the top:
(RNS) — A feud between a website that specializes in religious and political satire and a fact-checking powerhouse is raising questions about the role of short-form internet satire in the era of fake news.
Last week (July 22), the Babylon Bee — a website that got its start in primarily religious satire but has since waded into more political waters by satirizing liberal political figures — published a story in which a Georgia state lawmaker accused a Chick-fil-A employee of telling her to “Go back to your country!” only to later learn that the cashier actually said “my pleasure.”
According to the Babylon Bee’s website, the article was shared nearly 400,000 times on Facebook and more than 53,000 time on Twitter.
There was just one problem: Although written for a satirical site, the account was mostly true. A Georgia lawmaker did have a similar encounter with a store worker in the past month, but it was in a Publix, not a Chick-fil-A, and the exact wording of the worker was unclear.
Maybe this is my bias showing, but I am not certain “powerhouse” is the term I would have chosen to describe Snopes. I mean, is Snopes really a powerhouse?