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posted by martyb on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:20AM   Printer-friendly
from the it's-a-right-wing-thing dept.

Fake News Sharing in US is a Right-Wing Thing, Says Study

A study by researchers at Oxford University concluded that sharing fake and junk news is much more prevalent amongst Trump supporters and other people with hard right-wing tendencies.

From the Guardian:

The study, from the university's "computational propaganda project", looked at the most significant sources of "junk news" shared in the three months leading up to Donald Trump's first State of the Union address this January, and tried to find out who was sharing them and why.

"On Twitter, a network of Trump supporters consumes the largest volume of junk news, and junk news is the largest proportion of news links they share," the researchers concluded. On Facebook, the skew was even greater. There, "extreme hard right pages – distinct from Republican pages – share more junk news than all the other audiences put together.

Polarization, Partisanship and Junk News Consumption over Social Media in the US

What kinds of social media users read junk news? We examine the distribution of the most significant sources of junk news in the three months before President Donald Trump's first State of the Union Address. Drawing on a list of sources that consistently publish political news and information that is extremist, sensationalist, conspiratorial, masked commentary, fake news and other forms of junk news, we find that the distribution of such content is unevenly spread across the ideological spectrum. We demonstrate that (1) on Twitter, a network of Trump supporters shares the widest range of known junk news sources and circulates more junk news than all the other groups put together; (2) on Facebook, extreme hard right pages—distinct from Republican pages—share the widest range of known junk news sources and circulate more junk news than all the other audiences put together; (3) on average, the audiences for junk news on Twitter share a wider range of known junk news sources than audiences on Facebook's public pages.

http://comprop.oii.ox.ac.uk/research/polarization-partisanship-and-junk-news/

[Ed. note: page is loading very slowly; try a direct link to the actual report (pdf). --martyb]


Original Submission #1Original Submission #2

 
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DeathMonkey on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:17PM (3 children)

    by DeathMonkey (1380) on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:17PM (#635034) Journal

    Surely it depends on what you define as fake news?

    Things that are objectively false, yet reported as news.

    See, it's not that hard!

    Starting Score:    1  point
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:20PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:20PM (#635240)

    It's the "objectively false" part that gets them. Actually, many people out there don't believe that such a thing exists. An unnamed White House aide during the Bush Administration was famously quoted [nytimes.com]:

    The aide said that guys like me were "in what we call the reality-based community," which he defined as people who "believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality." ... "That's not the way the world really works anymore," he continued. "We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors ... and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @12:10AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @12:10AM (#635299)

    Things that are objectively false, yet reported as news.

    See, it's not that hard!

    Correct. Trump has a 4% higher approval rating than Obama did at this time in his presidency. What would that number be without the massive fake news smear campaign courtesy of the FBI, the DOJ, Soros, Clinton, Brock, McCain and Fusion GPS?

    • (Score: 2) by Joe Desertrat on Monday February 12 2018, @10:34PM

      by Joe Desertrat (2454) on Monday February 12 2018, @10:34PM (#636855)

      Correct. Trump has a 4% higher approval rating than Obama did at this time in his presidency. What would that number be without the massive fake news smear campaign

      Obama's approval rating was the result of an even more aggressive and highly financed "massive fake news smear campaign". The sort of campaign that had people claiming they loved the ACA but hated "Obamacare", Obama was not born in the US, Obama is a Muslim, etc., etc.