rvenkat + journalism   59

Real Solutions for Fake News? Measuring the Effectiveness of General Warnings and Fact-Check Tags in Reducing Belief in False Stories on Social Media | SpringerLink
Social media has increasingly enabled “fake news” to circulate widely, most notably during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign. These intentionally false or misleading stories threaten the democratic goal of a well-informed electorate. This study evaluates the effectiveness of strategies that could be used by Facebook and other social media to counter false stories. Results from a pre-registered experiment indicate that false headlines are perceived as less accurate when people receive a general warning about misleading information on social media or when specific headlines are accompanied by a “Disputed” or “Rated false” tag. Though the magnitudes of these effects are relatively modest, they generally do not vary by whether headlines were congenial to respondents’ political views. In addition, we find that adding a “Rated false” tag to an article headline lowers its perceived accuracy more than adding a “Disputed” tag (Facebook’s original approach) relative to a control condition. Finally, though exposure to the “Disputed” or “Rated false” tags did not affect the perceived accuracy of unlabeled false or true headlines, exposure to a general warning decreased belief in the accuracy of true headlines, suggesting the need for further research into how to most effectively counter false news without distorting belief in true information.

--That Nyhan could get his seminar class to write a paper is applause worthy!
brendan.nyhan  misinformation  disinformation  intervention  political_psychology  networked_public_sphere  journalism 
8 days ago by rvenkat
Fake News as Discursive Integration: An Analysis of Sites That Publish False, Misleading, Hyperpartisan and Sensational Information: Journalism Studies: Vol 0, No 0
After the 2016 US presidential election, the concept of fake news captured popular attention, but conversations lacked a clear conceptualization and used the label in elastic ways to describe various distinct phenomena. In this paper, we analyze fake news as genre blending, combining elements of traditional news with features that are exogenous to normative professional journalism: misinformation, sensationalism, clickbait, and bias. Through a content analysis of stories published by 50 sites that have been labeled fake news and the engagement they generated on social media, we found that stories employed moderate levels of sensationalism, misinformation and partisanship to provide anti-establishment narratives. Complete fabrications were uncommon and did not resonate well with audiences, although there was some truth-stretching that came with genre blending. Results suggest that technocentric solutions aimed at detecting falsehoods are likely insufficient, as fake news is defined more by partisanship and identity politics than misinformation and deception.

-- Finally, a concrete potentially measurable definition of fake of news. If reframed, a potential hypothesis on content virality.
journalism  media_studies  misinformation  disinformation  natural_language_processing  text_mining  via:nyhan 
5 weeks ago by rvenkat
Mic shuts down, a victim of management hubris and Facebook’s pivot to video - Columbia Journalism Review
--something similar happens in some universities where tech industry coercion decides specifics of tenure lines, courses and their content, etc.
fb  journalism  monopoly  market_microstructure  platform_economics 
8 weeks ago by rvenkat
Coverage of maternal health threats overlooks black expertise - Columbia Journalism Review
Minor quibble
-- I still am confused about the use of the term *lived experience*; here they seem to be mean simple ecological rationality but use *-studies argot. Also, disappointing to see CJR use misleading click-bait. But if they seriously imply that only black experts can diagnose or prognosticate about black health, then _I am getting off the train_
journalism  social_construction_of_knowledge  inequality  race  health  expert_judgment 
8 weeks ago by rvenkat
Bots increase exposure to negative and inflammatory content in online social systems | PNAS
Social media can deeply influence reality perception, affecting millions of people’s voting behavior. Hence, maneuvering opinion dynamics by disseminating forged content over online ecosystems is an effective pathway for social hacking. We propose a framework for discovering such a potentially dangerous behavior promoted by automatic users, also called “bots,” in online social networks. We provide evidence that social bots target mainly human influencers but generate semantic content depending on the polarized stance of their targets. During the 2017 Catalan referendum, used as a case study, social bots generated and promoted violent content aimed at Independentists, ultimately exacerbating social conflict online. Our results open challenges for detecting and controlling the influence of such content on society.
bots  misinformation  disinformation  networked_public_sphere  journalism  via:nyhan 
november 2018 by rvenkat
Social Media, Political Polarization, and Political Disinformation: A Review of the Scientific Literature
The Hewlett Foundation commissioned this report to provide an overview of the current state of the literature on the relationship between social media; political polarization; and political “disinformation,” a term used to encompass a wide range of types of information about politics found online, including “fake news,” rumors, deliberately factually incorrect information, inadvertently factually incorrect information, politically slanted information, and “hyperpartisan” news.

The review of the literature is provided in six separate sections, each of which can be read individually but that cumulatively are intended to provide an overview of what is known—and unknown—about the relationship between social media, political polarization, and disinformation.

social_media  polarization  misinformation  disinformation  journalism  report  brendan.nyhan 
march 2018 by rvenkat
The science of fake news | Science
The rise of fake news highlights the erosion of long-standing institutional bulwarks against misinformation in the internet age. Concern over the problem is global. However, much remains unknown regarding the vulnerabilities of individuals, institutions, and society to manipulations by malicious actors. A new system of safeguards is needed. Below, we discuss extant social and computer science research regarding belief in fake news and the mechanisms by which it spreads. Fake news has a long history, but we focus on unanswered scientific questions raised by the proliferation of its most recent, politically oriented incarnation. Beyond selected references in the text, suggested further reading can be found in the supplementary materials.
review  report  misinformation  disinformation  contagion  journalism  news_media  networks  dmce  teaching 
march 2018 by rvenkat
How Newspapers Reveal Political Power* | Political Science Research and Methods | Cambridge Core
Political science is in large part the study of power, but power itself is difficult to measure. We argue that we can use newspaper coverage—in particular, the relative amount of space devoted to particular subjects in newspapers—to measure the relative power of an important set of political actors and offices. We use a new dataset containing nearly 50 million historical newspaper pages from 2,700 local US newspapers over the years 1877–1977. We define and discuss a measure of power we develop based on observed word frequencies, and we validate it through a series of analyses. Overall, we find that the relative coverage of political actors and of political offices is a strong indicator of political power for the cases we study. To illustrate its usefulness, we then apply the measure to understand when (and where) state party committees lost their power. Taken together, the paper sheds light on the nature of political news coverage and offers both a new dataset and a new measure for studying political power in a wide set of contexts.
news_media  political_science  natural_language_processing  text_mining  journalism  via:nyhan 
january 2018 by rvenkat
Misinformation and Mass Audiences Edited by Brian G. Southwell, Emily A. Thorson, and Laura Sheble
Lies and inaccurate information are as old as humanity, but never before have they been so easy to spread. Each moment of every day, the Internet and broadcast media purvey misinformation, either deliberately or accidentally, to a mass audience on subjects ranging from politics to consumer goods to science and medicine, among many others. Because misinformation now has the potential to affect behavior on a massive scale, it is urgently important to understand how it works and what can be done to mitigate its harmful effects.

Misinformation and Mass Audiences brings together evidence and ideas from communication research, public health, psychology, political science, environmental studies, and information science to investigate what constitutes misinformation, how it spreads, and how best to counter it. The expert contributors cover such topics as whether and to what extent audiences consciously notice misinformation, the possibilities for audience deception, the ethics of satire in journalism and public affairs programming, the diffusion of rumors, the role of Internet search behavior, and the evolving efforts to counteract misinformation, such as fact-checking programs. The first comprehensive social science volume exploring the prevalence and consequences of, and remedies for, misinformation as a mass communication phenomenon, Misinformation and Mass Audiences will be a crucial resource for students and faculty researching misinformation, policymakers grappling with questions of regulation and prevention, and anyone concerned about this troubling, yet perhaps unavoidable, dimension of current media systems.
book  misinformation  disinformation  media_studies  public_sphere  contagion  social_psychology  journalism  dmce  networks  teaching 
november 2017 by rvenkat
The Conversation
At the inferface of scientific blogging and science journalism
new_media  magazine  journalism 
march 2017 by rvenkat
The Sparrow Project | The Sparrow Project
The Sparrow Project is a nonprofit grassroots public interest newswire focused on amplifying stories from struggles for social, economic, racial, and environmental justice. Stories that appear on this site are also serviced as distributions to the press, providing source material for top-tier outlets across the US and internationally. Since 2010 The Sparrow Project has placed tens of thousands of stories in top outlets including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Associated Press, and Agence France Presse.

--like propublica?
journalism  united_states_of_america  non-profit 
march 2017 by rvenkat
Study: Breitbart-led right-wing media ecosystem altered broader media agenda - Columbia Journalism Review
--Interesting, their main argument is that the extreme-right media participated in a concerted strategy and changed the mainstream media's agenda while simultaneously sealing their base's information access.
us_elections  us_politics  polarization  social_media  social_networks  algorithms  right-wing_populism  us_conservative_thought  journalism  report  data  ?  networks  teaching 
march 2017 by rvenkat
Gun Violence Spiked — And Arrests Declined — In Chicago Right After The Laquan McDonald Video Release | FiveThirtyEight
-- Is this the best a data savvy publication can do? The least they could have done is to utter 'change-point detection' and be explicitly half-hearted in their purported attempt.
pop_data_science  journalism  i_remain_skeptical  causality  causal_inference  teaching  dmce 
april 2016 by rvenkat
Bad Science
Ben Goldacre's blog on Bad Science.
blog  journalism  bad_science  people 
august 2015 by rvenkat

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