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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: 2) by Thexalon on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:34PM (3 children)

    by Thexalon (636) on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:34PM (#635053)

    That is certainly an improvement, but the fact of the matter is that nobody fits into a neat little box, and it often depends a lot on who's getting paid and who's doing the paying.

    For instance, everybody whose local economy does not depend on military spending is, when asked about it, likely to say something along the lines of "Grr, why should I have to pay all this money so the Air Force can get planes that don't fly, and the Army can get tanks they didn't ask for?" Whereas everybody whose local economy does depend on military spending is pretty universally in favor of it, even if they know it serves no actual government purpose but does keep themselves or their family members employed.

    In short, it's not "All politics is local" but "All politics is personal".

    --
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:53AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:53AM (#635348)

    A great example is my dad.

    He never served in the military. He was an industrial PhD scientist who worked for food companies that were not military suppliers. He never lived in a town with a military base.

    He wants a bigger military. He has wanted more nukes since at least when he was in college in the 1960s, probably earlier. He wants more soldiers, more sailors, and more airmen. He wants bombers, submarines, and aircraft carriers. He especially wants space-based weapons and anti-ICBM systems.

    He isn't rich, but he's willing to pay. He donated over $1000 to Trump, and has spent quite a bit supporting the NRA. Although he isn't fond of taxes, he sees the military as the most important expense of the federal government.

    ...

    I'm a slightly less-good example, due to my employer selling bombs, but I didn't randomly choose my career. It's not like I would have been happy making phone apps and web pages. I love making things to harm America's enemies. Even before I got employed this way, I agreed with my dad.

    My brother is also a slightly less-good example, in his case due to a military base near his house. Thing is, he had his opinions before he moved there.

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @05:10AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @05:10AM (#635388)

      I love making things to harm America's enemies

      USA.gov's enemies are almost exclusively of its own making.

      In 1853, USAian Commodore Perry sailed a fleet with 61 cannons into Tokyo Bay and told the Japanese in no uncertain terms that they would open themselves to trade.

      In 1896, USAian Marines invaded and occupied Hawaii and USA.gov never left.

      In 1898, yellow journalism took USA.gov into a war of Imperialism against Spain.

      WWI was a European matter. USA.gov had no business getting involved.

      ...and as soon as WWI was over, USA.gov (and a dozen other Capitalist countries) invaded the newborn USSR (and never bothered to tell USAians it was doing that).

      In the 1930s, USA.gov sent a fleet to blockade Japanese trade in the Malaccan Strait.
      Pearl Harbor was payback.

      The coup which deposed the democratically-elected prime minister of Iran in 1953 and installed a brutal monster was directed by CIA.

      The USAian invasion and occupation of Vietnam was overt Imperialism.
      ...and USA.gov murdered civilians by the millions in that.

      ...and we could go all the way back to "the shores of Tripoli" (the Mediterranean coast of Libya, 1803) or "the halls of Montezuma" (Mexico City, 1845).

      -- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @06:47AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @06:47AM (#635423)

        You can't help the brainwashed, those events are too far removed for them. If nothing else they wave them away with "all countries do the same shit" and therefore they might as well look out for their own.