I guess by now we are all aware of "fake news" and what it means. Most people will associate the term with MSM and turn to the alternative news sources, such as the internet. Yet, here another danger lurks: fake persons, aka shills, who may present dangers of their own, especially if they are in the business of giving advice, outside of the sort which is general in nature. I'll give you one example of what I mean. Apparently, there used to exist a site which published erotic fiction supposedly written by a housewife and yet later, it turned out to be a man.
So how to recognise a fake? I guess if someone desires to create a fake persona online we don't really have a way to be 100% sure unless they get doxxed or self-doxx by some reason, yet, imo, there are certain signs which can betray them and their intentions. When in doubt, follow your gut feeling and stay on the safe side!
Personally I distrust everyone who will give online counselling, unless it's something general like "exercise and eat well", especially if they will go into detail discussing someone's personal situation, family conflicts, etc. Another category is the type who will always try to sell you something. It's one thing to be an affiliate and link to a product you like but it's quite another thing when someone obsessively pushes you to buy his brand of vitamins/supplements "because that's the only thing that works!"
Then you have conspiracy theorists. Sometimes they are onto something and may be even right about many things, but there is a type who will tell you that everything around you is fake and that you yourself probably don't exist, either. Generally, when the internet persona tells you that he or she alone is in the possession of (some) truth and everybody else is a shill, they are possibly a shill themselves:)
There are also fake Christians out there, which are probably the worst of all since they can promote false doctrine and that is much worse than wasting money on vitamins (which are probably harmless anyway and can even do you good). And here is an idea of mine: I may be wrong, but personally I don't trust anyone who will tell you one thing and promote another. You can't be a Bible following Christian and defend things like p0rn, for instance. You can't say that you are all for traditional family and then discourage marriage, whether directly or indirectly. You can't say that you support Biblical gender roles and then say it OK for married women to work.
I also find it rather strange when I see churches being attacked. Yes, churches aren't ideal. We aren't ideal, either. It may be that in the area where you live there is not one decent church left. It could be probably better in some situations for some people to worship at home. But to blatantly say that ALL the churches are bad and corrupted and you can only find the truth on someone's web page is a sign of a cult mentality.
If you have real life problems, please try to solve them by interacting with real life people, and not by joining an internet personality cult!
If you have any ideas, please feel free to share!