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PLoS ONE ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 17 (1) ◽  
pp. e0261535
Johanna Abendroth ◽  
Peter Nauroth ◽  
Tobias Richter ◽  
Mario Gollwitzer

Readers use prior knowledge to evaluate the validity of statements and detect false information without effort and strategic control. The present study expands this research by exploring whether people also non-strategically detect information that threatens their social identity. Participants (N = 77) completed a task in which they had to respond to a “True” or “False” probe after reading true, false, identity-threatening, or non-threatening sentences. Replicating previous studies, participants reacted more slowly to a positive probe (“True”) after reading false (vs. true) sentences. Notably, participants also reacted more slowly to a positive probe after reading identity-threatening (vs. non-threatening) sentences. These results provide first evidence that identity-threatening information, just as false information, is detected at a very early stage of information processing and lends support to the notion of a routine, non-strategic identity-defense mechanism.

2022 ◽  
pp. 16-34
Mary Aiken ◽  
Ruby Farr ◽  
Doug Witschi

Humans are adapting to and increasingly relying on technology particularly in times of global crisis. As online audiences increase, so does the risk of cybercrime. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is discussed in the context of health anxiety, the infodemic and cyberchondria, along with cybercriminal exploitation of pandemic-induced human anxiety and psychological vulnerability. Health anxiety, uncertainty, social isolation, changes to work-life practices, information seeking, mistrust of public health organisations, and the spread of false information all arguably intersect – leading to a global state of human vulnerability and therefore presenting opportunities for cybercriminals. There is a requirement for global agencies such as the United Nations, the WHO, INTERPOL, and governments to take action. Police agencies worldwide need to extrapolate learnings regarding the current pandemic and attendant increase in cybercrime and based on those findings move to form a global coalition with industry partners to investigate, predict, and prevent a potential future cybercrime pandemic.

2022 ◽  
pp. 31-51
Aleksandra E. Mirek-Rogowska ◽  
Krzysztof Gajdka

The COVID-19 pandemic brings challenges not only to health systems and governments around the world, but also to the media. One of them is to provide the public with information about the virus, healthcare. However, if there is not enough knowledge regarding the virus it might be a good base for false information flowing all over the media. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the COVID-19 pandemic should be called ‘infodemic', which is as dangerous as the virus pandemic. In order to prevent the dangerous consequences of false information, wide collaboration between different groups of experts, authorities, media, and media users is required, as well as very good media and information management.

2022 ◽  
pp. 91-115
Kriti Aggarwal ◽  
Sunil K. Singh ◽  
Muskaan Chopra ◽  
Sudhakar Kumar

Today, social networks and media have become an integral part of everyone's daily existence. The rising popularity of social media has increased tenfold during the times of COVID-19 when people were forced to isolate following social distancing norms. Between July 2020 and July 2021, active social users grew to 520 million. The COVID-19 crisis has resulted in the usage of digital platforms not only for entertainment purposes but also for educational and corporate reasons. Hence, the spread of information has increased excessively on every social media platform. This has resulted in an equal rise of false information. The term infodemic was widely introduced during COVID-19 to explain the harmful effects of misinformation through social media. The chapter, hence, argues that the advantages of social media surpasses the dangers of misinformation. It discusses the role of COVID-19 in digitalization and how social media has helped in provision of various industries.

2022 ◽  
Vol 8 (1) ◽  
pp. 205630512110690
Kelley Cotter ◽  
Julia R. DeCook ◽  
Shaheen Kanthawala

During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, various officials flagged the critical threat of false information. In this study, we explore how three major social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube) responded to this “infodemic” during early stages of the pandemic via emergent fact-checking policies and practices, and consider what this means for ensuring a well-informed public. We accomplish this through a thematic analysis of documents published by the three platforms that address fact-checking, particularly those that focus on COVID-19. In addition to examining what the platforms said they did, we also examined what the platforms actually did in practice via a retrospective case study drawing on secondary data about the viral conspiracy video, Plandemic. We demonstrate that the platforms focused their energies primarily on the visibility of COVID-19 mis/disinformation on their sites via (often vaguely described) policies and practices rife with subjectivity. Moreover, the platforms communicated the expectation that users should ultimately be the ones to hash out what they believe is true. We argue that this approach does not necessarily serve the goal of ensuring a well-informed public, as has been the goal of fact-checking historically, and does little to address the underlying conditions and structures that permit the circulation and amplification of false information online.

2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (3) ◽  
pp. 2399-2408
Zainul Djumadin

Political participation means we will talk about the activities or activities of people as citizens in political life. Every citizen is required to participate in the process of making and formulating all state political policies. Students are intelligent individuals who are significant assets for a country. Students' political participation will feel more meaningful because they are considered and know that they are also idealistic and have not been contaminated by various destructive ideas. Therefore, this study aims to determine student political participation and the future of democracy in Indonesia. This study uses a qualitative approach with descriptive methods in analyzing research data. Political participation of students in democracy can be seen by their participation in democratic elections as novice voters, with the participation of students in elections will provide political sensitivity and stimulation to students to be more actively involved in politics, with them being more actively involved in politics will be able to develop social character so that they have independence in determining their desires and are not easily influenced by persuasion and invitations from certain parties. In this study, there is also a need for political education for students. It is not easy to swallow false information that specific individuals do not truly create due to the lack of experience and knowledge in the field of politics in Indonesia.

2021 ◽  
Vol 3 (1) ◽  
pp. 27-39
Juliana Teixeira ◽  
Allysson Martins

This article, which integrates broader research, aims to identify the fake news patterns propagated in the process of disinformation about COVID-19 that were evaluated by the Brazilian fact-checking agencies Fato or Fake and Lupa. Aiming at this goal, we considered the strategies for spreading false information about the disease from January to September 2020. As a methodology, we used part of the procedures associated with media framing, focusing on the themes and labels of the checked information. Politics and death were the two main issues in misinformation assessed by the agencies, closely followed by themes related to cure and prevention. Personalities were particularly relevant at Lupa. The high frequency of the political issue reveals the ideological polarization that Brazil is experiencing, leading to global health crises such as the new coronavirus pandemic.

2021 ◽  
pp. 000276422110660
Celeste Campos-Castillo ◽  
Stef M. Shuster

Despite growing research on false information, a theoretical framework to organize findings is lacking. We use affect control theory to fill this need and introduce the affect-based credibility rating for interpreting the effectiveness of rhetorical strategies in discrediting the source of falsehoods. The rating quantifies the difference in connotations between the labels used to characterize the source and an ideal, credible source. Successful discrediting amplifies the difference. We use the rating to compare rhetorical strategies for discrediting opponents as sources during rival information campaigns about the Equal Rights Amendment. We show claiming the opponent is spreading disinformation rather than misinformation (stating the opponent is spreading falsehoods deliberately, rather than unwittingly) appears more effective at discrediting, particularly when disinformation claims allege more sinister motives for lying. The new rating helps organize findings by enabling direct comparisons between strategies, thereby contributing toward efforts to detect and discredit falsehoods in media.

Ta dib ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 24 (2) ◽  
pp. 87
Iredho Fani Reza

This study aims to find out hoaxes on social media and how the form of tabayyun and its implementation can be a method of preventing hoaxes spread on social media. Using this type of research mixed methods with the design of the Sequential Exploratory Strategy. The subjects in this study N Total = 514 who were Muslim students at universities in Palembang City which were determined using purposive sampling technique. The data collection method used an online survey. Data analysis using coding techniques (open coding, axial coding and selective coding) version 9 of the Atlas.ti program and product moment analysis and testing for level categorization of the IBM SPSS version 24 program. This study found, first, the form of hoaxes on social media: 1) News lie; 2) False information; 3) Does not match the facts. Second, students have not implemented tabayyun optimally in responding to news on social media. The form of the application of tabayyun is to seek the truth by thinking critically, observing and confirming the news and information obtained.

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