The internet is most people’s main source of entertainment and information, and while it is useful, it may not always be accurate. There are some topics, such as health, that require some research before going ahead to use the information. And especially in these times, it is important that you verify whatever you see on the internet before applying it in your daily life. So here are a few ideas to ensure the information your assimilating is accurate. This will also go a long way to help you prevent information overload.
1. Check the credentials
Most internet posts have the author’s name or come from an organization. And because it is the internet doesn’t mean what someone says they are is who they really are. What you can do is to research the author’s name or the organization that’s giving out that information. You can start by looking into their background, by looking through their About Us page. Also, look out for things like experience and education to determine if they have enough industry expertise to speak on the topic. Apart from that, you should also consider the URL for whether it is a commercial site or a non-profit website. This will let you know the purpose of the site so that you can decide whether or not the information will be useful to you.
2. Check the timeliness
As the world evolves, new things come out every day, and this makes it crucial that the information you’re assimilating is still relevant. There are very few things that stay the same over the years, and if you’re searching for a topic like health, then it is important that the information isn’t too outdated. So look at the publishing date on the content you’re reading to make sure that it is current.
3. Verify the links
First of all, there is some content that should not be opinion pieces. Topics on health, for example, should come with credible sources that back any claims. So whatever you’re reading, make sure that whatever information you’re getting from the internet has these sources. Take your time to go through these sources to make sure they are also from credible sources. For topics on health, it will be better if it is from industry professionals, whether individuals like Patrick Conway or organizations like the WHO.
4. Compare with other sources
If you want the best information, then you shouldn’t have to rely on one source. So whenever you’re searching for information on the internet, be sure to research elsewhere as well. Compare all other sites that also produce content on the topic you’re interested in and double-check against each other. You can go a step further and go off the internet to a library or print publications. If the information you find is consistent with others, then there is a good chance that it is accurate.
The internet can be a great source of information and knowledge, and indeed there are a lot of posts day in and day out. But it is your duty to ensure that your information you’re getting is accurate so that you don’t contribute to misleading people.