Most Americans think they can watch fake news. They can’t, study finds

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A study of surveys involving 8,200 people published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences also showed that Republicans were more likely to fall for fake news than Democrats.

The team, led by Ben Lyons, a professor of communications at the University of Utah, presented the headlines of the study volunteers in a format for how news articles would look if they appeared in a Facebook feed. They were also asked to evaluate their ability to determine if the stories were true.

“We show that highly confident individuals are more likely to visit untrusted websites in behavioral data; for failing to successfully distinguish between true and false claims about current events in survey questions; and in particular To report a greater willingness to like or share false content on social media when it is politically favorable, ”the team wrote.

“Overall, these results present a worrisome picture: individuals who are least equipped to identify false news content are also the least aware of their limitations and, therefore, believe in it and call it Are susceptible to further spread, ”he said.

“Ultimately, Republicans are more confident than Democrats, which is not surprising given the lower levels of media trust they report.”

About 90% of the participants told the researchers that they believed they were above average in their ability to smell fake stories.

Lyons said in a statement, “Although Americans believe the confusion is widespread due to false news, relatively few people have seen or shared it.”

“If people wrongly see themselves as highly skilled at identifying false news, they are more likely to inadvertently consume, believe and share it, especially if it suits their worldview. “

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