Facebook makes it relatively easy to find the trail of fake news making its way around the social sharing website, and Google News makes it even easier to discern the fake news from real news. For example, the headline titled “JUST IN: Trump Announces Social Security Recipients Will Now Receive THIS Amount Monthly” enjoyed a pretty large percentage on the “hot” scale tracked by Story Tide, which reveals the stories getting the most traction online, including those articles with lots of Facebook shares or overall online attention.
According to Facebook, the article “JUST IN: Trump Announces Social Security Recipients Will Now Receive THIS Amount Monthly” by www.truthmonitor.com appeared to explode on Facebook and garner at least 3,123 shares in three hours. The top reports displayed on Facebook when a Facebook user searches for information about President Trump and Social Security also includes the article with a similar title, ” BREAKING: Trump Just Announced EVERY Social Security Recipient Will Now Get THIS Much Monthly.” That article was published by conservativefighters.com and received a whopping 7,468 shares on Facebook in 18 hours.
The similarly titled “JUST IN: Trump CONFIRMS Social Security Recipients Will Now Get THIS Each Month,” also from TruthMonitor.com, appeared on Facebook 23 hours ago, and received 6,071 shares on Facebook. Another report, titled “REPORT: Trump Just Announced ALL Social Security Recipients Will Now Receive THIS MUCH Monthly,” featured on Proud Patriots at www.proud-patriots.com appeared on Facebook on Monday, with 1,018 shares Facebook.
All of the above articles seem to stem from an article with a similar title, “BREAKING: Trump Announces ALL Social Security Recipients Will Now Receive THIS Much Monthly.” That article came from smeltis.com on Sunday, and only received 316 shares on Facebook; a lot fewer shares than the similarly titled articles that were published after it. What they all have in common is the language about President Trump allegedly making an announcement about Social Security payments, claiming recipients of Social Security will experience increased monthly payments.
For example, a section of the fake article from truthmonitor.com claims that Mr. Trump is now delivering on his promise to strengthen Social Security, even though the latest news reports about President Trump and Social Security claim the opposite. As reported by The Atlantic, President Trump’s promises on the campaign trail are in direct opposition to the Trump-approved Obamacare replacement plan.
“Trump once pledged ‘insurance for everybody,’ but this plan will result in 24 million fewer people covered by insurance, perhaps the largest single social-welfare cut in American history. The president promised to ‘save Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security without cuts,’ but the plan cuts $880 billion from Medicaid over the next 10 years.”
The fake truthmonitor.com report claims that Mr. Trump announced an “increased” monthly Social Security payment.
“President Trump has reportedly announced that monthly payment is increased to $1,360 for single recipients, and $2,260 for married couples, and in addition to that, Social Security recipients which are still working will be able to earn more this year, without being penalized. This means that, thanks to President Trump, recipients under 65 can earn up to $16,920, and those that are turning 66 can earn as much as $44,880, which is $3,000 more from last year when Obama was in charge.”
However, according to CBS News, “the typical retiree’s Social Security payment of $1,360 per month” is already a fact, not an increase announced by President Trump. The publication also notes that “the average married couple receives $2,260 per month in Social Security benefits,” therefore, the above articles that have been shared about 18,000 times on Facebook thus far, crediting President Trump with some kind of increase in Social Security benefits, are not true.
Trump said no Medicaid or Social Security cuts— Rantt (@RanttNews) March 14, 2017
The CBO reports from 2017-2026:
Medicaid ⬇️ $880 billion
Social Security ⬇️ $3 billion pic.twitter.com/WRZiIaQmqf
[Featured Image by Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Images]