Apple CEO calls for 'massive campaign' to battle fake news

Apple CEO calls for 'massive campaign' to battle fake news

Apple CEO Tim Cook is calling for a “massive campaign” against fake online news stories.

In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, Cook said governments need to fund the “modern version of a public service announcement” in order to fight the phenomenon and called for education campaigns in schools.

“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,” Cook said. “It’s killing people’s minds in a way.”

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Tech companies, most notably Facebook, have been accused in recent months of allowing fake news to spread. In a Senate hearing last month, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper blamed false news stories for influencing the 2016 presidential race, saying it was part of Russia’s plan to interfere in the election.

The concept of fake news became a widely discussed topic during the 2016 presidential election, describing stories that presented readers with attractive content without being rooted in fact.

But the Trump administration has latched onto the term, using it frequently to describe news stories that are not favorable to President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Democrat slams Donald Trump Jr. for ‘serious case of amnesia’ after testimony Skier Lindsey Vonn: I don’t want to represent Trump at Olympics Poll: 4 in 10 Republicans think senior Trump advisers had improper dealings with Russia MORE or his policies.

Cook said tech companies needed to take charge in fighting fake news, urging fellow industry leaders to develop tools to reduce the presence of non-credible news stories on the internet.

“All of us technology companies need to create some tools that help diminish the volume of fake news,” he told the Daily Telegraph.

"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.”

The result, Cook said, would be a boost in readership for credible journalism.

“The outcome of that is that truthful, reliable, non-sensational, deep news outlets will win,” he said.