Local news experts gathered at the Parmly Billings Library Tuesday for a panel discussion called Fake News Part II, One Year Later. The panel included KTVQ news director Jon Stepanek; Tim Lehman, a history professor at Rocky Mountain College; and editor of the Billings Gazette Darrell Ehrlick.

Professor Lehman defined fake news as that which is deliberately, intentionally and verifiably false. Panelists agreed that the meaning of the term has evolved to include– for some– news with which the consumer disagrees, whether accurate or not, as evidenced by President Donald Trump’s characterizations of reporting as fake, however well sourced or verified.

Stepanek said that heightened outrage at the media has caused safety concerns at KTVQ. He said President Trump calling media [quote] “enemies of the people… really hit home. It hurt to have our president say that.” [end quote]