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What Do You Meme That Isn't True?: Home

Did Mark Twain Actually Say This?

A photo of Mark Twain. Quote says, "If voting made a difference, they wouldn't let us do it. Mark Twain""If voting made a difference, they wouldn't let us do it." Did Mark Twain think this way about voting?

If you have news, memes, or a hot button topic you want to know more about, below are questions to ask yourself and strategies to try while investigating what is true, false, or somewhere in between.  One strategy will work better than the others depending on your topic. Finding more than one source will strengthen your case.

Click each tab button below to try them all. Good luck!

Click the Tabs Below to Investigate

1. Whether it is a website, an image, or just a quote someone posted, find answers to as many of the below questions as you can!

Image of a question mark AUTHORITY

Image of a question mark ACCURACY

Image of a question mark PURPOSE


How many answers did you find (Click the check boxes)?

2. Here is a list of fact-checking websites.  See what others have uncovered about your image, information or article.

3. Here are three tips to use in a search engine like Google more efficiently.

a. Include "site:" to your search. This searches your keywords (ex. Mark Twain voting) through websites you are interested in.  Note, delete http://, www., and any content after your core URL including the / .

Image of a bright lightbulbTip: A colon symbol is after the word "site" in the search.

Google logo



b. Search what other people are saying about a website. Include "-site:" to your search. This brings back hits about your website that excludes the website itself. 

Google logo



c. Search for more reliable sites.  Websites ending with .edu are educational sites, .org are organizations, .gov are government websites. Using "site:" will filter what populates in your results.

Google logo

4. Like Twain's quote, memes usually have text with it. Search the quote and see if a website, video or blog has spoken about it. You can also describe the image in keywords.

Image of a bright lightbulbTip: Putting quotation marks around two or more words searches them as an exact phrase.  Do this when you want the words next to each other in the exact order.

Google logo


Find the most reliable source from the results. For example, a newspaper or college website would be more reliable than a blog post.

Google Images Logo

5.  Do a reverse image lookup at  Upload an image, paste the image's URL, or drag and drop an image onto the search box.

For both reverse image lookup and searching text, find the earliest occurrence of it on the internet.  If it isn't obvious in your results, try limiting the date it was published.  You will have to play around with the dates to see when your image or text first popped up.

After pressing search, go to Tools -> Time -> Custom Range.

screen shot of Google image search results. Cursor pointing on custom range found after clicking on Tools, then Time.

6. Good library databases to use while investigating your fake news, memes and hot button topics.

Note, use your Lobo Apps Username & Password to get access to these databases.


If you are interested to learn more on strategies to evaluating resources, my sources were:

Caulfield, M. A. (n.d.). Web literacy for student fact checkers. Retrieved from
Meriam Library. (2010). Evaluating information: Applying the CRAAP test. Retrieved from