• A quick google search produced the following definitions for 'factoid': 1. An invented fact that is taken to be true because of its appearance in print. Through persistent misuse, a new meaning is taking over: a brief news item that is factual but usually trivial. Either avoid the word or be sure to convey which meaning is intended. 2. something resembling a fact; unverified (often invented) information that is given credibility because it appeared in print a brief (usually one sentence and usually trivial) news item 3. Factoid originally meant a wholly spurious "fact" invented to create or prolong public exposure or to manipulate public opinion and was coined by Norman Mailer in his 1973 biography of Marilyn Monroe. Mailer himself described a factoid as "facts which have no existence before appearing in a magazine or newspaper". Mailer created the word by combining the word "fact" and the ending "-oid" to mean "like a fact". So the difference between fact and factoid will depend on your preferred definition of factoid. Either a factoid is a piece of invented 'fact' or it is a small fact, in other words, a piece of trivia - a 'factette', you might say.

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