Category: fake news

Between fast science and fake news: Preprint servers are political

Preprints servers have become a vital medium for the rapid sharing of scientific findings. This has been made clear by the speed with which researchers have developed new knowledge about the Covid-19 pandemic. However, this speed and openness has also contributed to the ability of low quality preprints to derail public debate and feed conspiracy … Continued

Don’t Just Debunk Covid-19 Myths. Learn From Them

The spread of Covid-19 across the globe has gone hand in hand with the spread of rumours and myth about the virus. In this repost, Anita Makri, discusses how social science research has played a vital role in responding to previous epidemics and argues that rather seeing Covid-19 myths as a problem of information deficit, they … Continued

Book Review: This Is Not Propaganda: Adventures in the War Against Reality by Peter Pomerantsev

In This Is Not Propaganda: Adventures in the War Against Reality, Peter Pomerantsev takes readers on a gripping journey through the disinformation age, drawing on his own family history as well as encounters with numerous figures positioned on both sides of the information spectrum: those working to manipulate our perceptions and those engaged in the struggle for a more facts-based public sphere. Ignas Kalpokas highly […]

Do social media companies undervalue the expertise of online communities?

Type vaccines into twitter and under a new initiative you will be prompted towards information supplied by expert institutions such as the NHS or US Department of Health and Human Services. However, by directing audiences to these sources, do social media companies overlook the important role played by online communities of lay experts? In this post Stefania Vicari explores how […]

For a Civil Internet – How the tone of online conversations can build trust

The internet is a challenging environment for those looking to engage in enlightened public discourse. In this repost, Fabio Sabatini and Tommaso Reggiani present evidence showing how, although incivility has become the default setting for online conversations, where debate is civil it has a corresponding effect on levels of trust. Suggesting that an appropriate policy response to the incivility of the internet, […]

Establishing trust between researchers, government and the public: proposing an integrated process for evidence synthesis and policy development

The journey from evidence to policy is inevitably complex and frequently becomes divisive as arguments rage about the validity and worth of the evidence presented. This is especially true in the “post-truth” era, where the opinions of experts are viewed with scepticism, opposing views (and evidence) are dismissed as “fake news”, and social media algorithms have fostered an “echo chamber” […]

There is a large disparity between what people see in social media about health research and the underlying strength of evidence

Our social media feeds are full of articles shared by friends and family that make claims about how something can prevent a particular health condition. But how robust is the scientific evidence base underpinning these claims? Noah Haber, Alexander Breskin, Ellen Moscoe and Emily R. Smith, on behalf of the CLAIMS team, report on a systematic review of the state of […]

Three ways in which digital researchers can shed light on the information politics of the “post-truth” era

Digital media played a prominent role in the recent US presidential election, with social media platforms channelling previously fringe universes of political culture, rooted in populism and post-truth politics, right into the mainstream of US political discourse. Meanwhile, traditional mechanisms, from polling to mainstream media, failed to adequately capture public sentiment around political events. Are new instruments needed to understand […]