Fake news is prominently spread through social media channels. And some of the channels already have features in place that could be used to remind users of the importance of constantly being critical to sources and/or reporting.
For example, Instagram uses a "verified badge" to show when an account in fact belongs to a celebrity. The same type of marking could be used to show verified publishers, in other words publishers that have pledged to follow the ethical guidelines of the trade (to be impartial, build news on verified facts, etc).
Facebook also makes it possible to report inappropriate images or material that violates the platform's guidelines. The same solution could be used to report fake news. If enough users report the same publisher – and they do not belong to the list of verified publishers – a badge on the publishers posts would show just that; that the publisher have been reported many times, and that it should be kept in mind while consuming their content.
Together, these features would remind social media users to stay critical.
Realizing the Idea
The idea can be realized if the social media giants, and publisher organizations/media outlets around the world join forces. The technical functions are already in place – this idea is about using them in a different way. It will also be ethical and reasonable for those big giants to take some accountability and responsibility in fighting these kind of misleading news/ information that some unethical people/ organisations are posting fake news using social medias just for the sake of getting more viewers. Those fake news posters are benefiting on the expense of the genuine public and they need to be penalized discouraged if not eliminated at all.
In order to prevent malicious sabotage all reports should be motivated, and the reporters should be traceable. If a person is found to be maliciously reporting posts, he/she should be banned from further use of the function. The logic is based on the same logic as Wikipedia where the community develop the content together and in that way secure high trust and accuracy.
Off course, resources also needs to be allocated to manage the system. In particular when it comes to updating the list of verified publishers, so no damage is done to the credibility of established media.
The idea fulfills the users need of getting instant information about whether the news are credible, and if the publisher is to be relied upon. It also reminds users, on a day to day basis, to keep being critical towards news on social media.
The implementation of existing functions.