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Fact-checking website cracks down on Christian satire site Babylon Bee

by Tola Mbakwe

Snopes recently published an article entitled "Too Many People Think Satirical News Is Real".

In it, the writers talk about a survey they conducted on what Americans' views are on high-profile political issues.

They said: "We identified news stories - both true and false - that were being shared widely on social media.

"We discovered that many of the false stories weren't the kind that were trying to intentionally deceive their readers; they actually came from satirical sites and many people seemed to believe them."

The Ohio State University researchers asked a sample of 800 Americans whether they believed 120 "widely shared falsehoods."

The study revealed that "stories published by The Bee were among the most shared, factually inaccurate content in almost every survey we conducted".

It also found that Republicans were more likely to think that Babylon Bee articles were not satire.

The writers added: "Of the 23 falsehoods that came from The Bee, eight were confidently believed by at least 15 percent of Republican respondents."

Kyle Mann, editor-in-chief of the Babylon Bee, criticised the research on Twitter, saying the study was not conducted in a way that would produce accurate results.

Conservative news website Red State also backed Babylon Bee, claiming Snopes is attacking the site because of the kind of satire it produces.

"It appears that Snopes' real problem with The Babylon Bee is not that they don't understand satire, but that The Babylon Bee's particular brand of satire - coming from a Christian, conservative perspective - annoys them.

"They haven't engaged in a vigorous, scorched-earth fact-checking of Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, or Real Time with Bill Maher, or any number of liberal-leaning comedy shows and websites."

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