Pick ANY existing and active conspiracy theory OR fake news story (current or past) AND in a complete academic essay of 1,750 words (not including direct quotations or Works Cited materials) investigate and debunk your conspiracy theory OR fake news story. Some questions you might want to consider are: does the theory/story make sense and/or is it reasonable? Is there a means or motive available? Is there enough evidence to support the theory/story? Does the theory/story actually explain what happened? Your essay should contain 6-7 CREDIBLE, ACADEMIC sources (preferably from the Mt. SAC database). Blogs, Wikis, op-eds (editorials), Reddit threads, and other questionable sources will NOT be accepted as valid ACADEMIC sources, though you may include them.

Any last words of advice?
In order to help build your paragraphs, try answering journalistic questions:

  1. Who created this theory/story and what was its purpose?
  2. How did this theory/story spread (by what means?) and what rhetoric was used to help it gain attention?
  3. What persuasive strategies made this theory/story seem to be true?
  4. What details were included (or purposely excluded) in order to help make it convincing?
  5. What news source or sources ultimately proved this theory/story to be fake?
    *Other things to think about: diction used, visuals used, money/”clicks” generated

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