NPR did some snooping and tracked down one of prime creators of fake news web sites, Jestin Coler. Coler owns a company appropriately named Disinfomedia.
"The whole idea from the start was to build a site that could kind of infiltrate the echo chambers of the alt-right, publish blatantly or fictional stories and then be able to publicly denounce those stories and point out the fact that they were fiction," Coler says.
He was amazed at how quickly fake news could spread and how easily people believe it.
One site, nationalreport.com, is still active. I've seen it before and you don't have to look at it for more than two seconds before realizing it's obviously fake.
I noticed. Hence I stopped following a bunch of people on Facebook who kept parroting this crap. On the bright side, my news feed doesn't get me riled up any more.
Coler says his writers have tried to write fake news for liberals — but they just never take the bait.
There's little comfort in knowing that many people didn't fall for the fake crap when you consider how many did.