The video above describes the process of lateral reading. Lateral reading is a type of verification process you can use to move beyond the specific site, object, or text you have found to see how others talk about that site/object/text, and how they talk about the credibility of the author, the authoring body, or about the topic itself.
Let's put lateral reading to the test with a nifty method for assessing the variety of information we may encounter as we prepare our speeches: SIFT. Here's what SIFT entails:
A note about bias:
Having a perspective does not in and of itself mean that the information someone is conveying is unreliable; rather, it suggests a point of view within a given reality. Understanding different points of view can be valuable to learning about your topic and conveying information in your speech.
However, if a particular perspective or bias distorts reality or facts, and you choose to share that information because it aligns with your perspective or argument, that becomes dangerous to your research and to the ethical use of information.
An example: We see a variety of perspectives in political news magazines. Different magazines might report on the same incident with a different tone or position, without distorting the reality of an event. For example, an article on gun legislation published in The New Republic (a liberal/progressive publication) or The National Review (a conservative publication) might offer differing points of view but similar reporting of the facts surrounding the legislation.
You may be asked to use peer reviewed articles to inform yourself on your speech topic, What are peer-reviewed articles (also known as "refereed" articles)?
Not sure if the journal article you've found is peer-reviewed?
Are sites that end in .org credible? What about .gov? The answer is, "It depends." Check out this video to learn more.
Top-Level Domains from Imagine Easy Solutions on Vimeo.
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