Web Only: the best of the blogs

The five must-read posts from today, on Amnesty, the Taliban and Northern Ireland.

1. "Scum-sucking pig" -- how it compares with the great political insults

Following the Labour MP David Wright's foolhardy description of the Tories as "scum-sucking pigs", Andrew Sparrow of the Guardian looks at how it stacks up against the great political insults.

2. This campaign to undermine Amnesty is shameful

Over at Pickled Politics, Sunny Hundal revisits the evidence and defends the human rights group's decision to work with Moazzam Begg and suspend Gita Sahgal.

3. The sting in the tail of the fight against the Taliban

Channel 4's Alex Thomson says the arrest of the Taliban's Mullah Baradar is a significant coup for Nato, but warns that defeating the Taliban remains a formidable challenge.

4. Mo Mowlam and the politics of private lives

Daniel Finkelstein argues, in opposition to David Aaronovitch, that the example of Mo Mowlam strengthens the case for greater disclosure about politicians' health.

5. Recognising the role of Irish Londoners

Ken Livingstone looks back at the Northern Ireland peace process in a guest blog on Left Foot Forward, ahead of a debate at the TUC on Saturday.

 

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Quiz: Can you identify fake news?

The furore around "fake" news shows no sign of abating. Can you spot what's real and what's not?

Hillary Clinton has spoken out today to warn about the fake news epidemic sweeping the world. Clinton went as far as to say that "lives are at risk" from fake news, the day after Pope Francis compared reading fake news to eating poop. (Side note: with real news like that, who needs the fake stuff?)

The sweeping distrust in fake news has caused some confusion, however, as many are unsure about how to actually tell the reals and the fakes apart. Short from seeing whether the logo will scratch off and asking the man from the market where he got it from, how can you really identify fake news? Take our test to see whether you have all the answers.

 

 

In all seriousness, many claim that identifying fake news is a simple matter of checking the source and disbelieving anything "too good to be true". Unfortunately, however, fake news outlets post real stories too, and real news outlets often slip up and publish the fakes. Use fact-checking websites like Snopes to really get to the bottom of a story, and always do a quick Google before you share anything. 

Amelia Tait is a technology and digital culture writer at the New Statesman.