Algorithms and Automation

Automation is a crucial tool of many disinformation campaigns, while algorithms are the complex sets of rules that affect what we see online. Because algorithms are designed by humans, they may reproduce biases and ideologies while making those biases seem naturalResearchers are also exploring how algorithms and automation can be used to study misinformation or counter malicious uses of the same kinds of tools. 

Live Research Review

Automated devices permeate our lives, from our toasters to Siri. The promise has been that automation and algorithms will make our lives simpler, and help us find the things we want in an increasingly connected world. But we now realize that on social media platforms, algorithms and automation can be used to spread disinformation further and faster.

Teaching & Learning

Explore course modules, handouts, teaching tools and syllabi about dis- and misinformation.

Latest News on Algorithms and Automation

One of the growing problems today is misinformation: the proliferation of fake news and misleading content across social media platforms. While artificial intelligence (AI) helps in its spread, there has been growing proof of how it can be used to curb this problem. However, more than just the daily news article, misinformation has far-reaching – […]

I am a former Facebook employee who was fired in September 2020, after working for over two and a half years as a member of the fake engagement team. I became a whistleblower earlier this year. While my work at Facebook protecting elections and civic discourse has been widely reported on, that was conducted in […]

The dangers of misinformation spreading on social media during the COVID-19 pandemic are known. However, software that allows individuals to generate automated content and share it via counterfeit accounts (or “bots”) to amplify misinformation has been overlooked, including how automated software can be used to disseminate original research while undermining scientific communication. We analyzed conversations […]

If you use such social media websites as Facebook and Twitter, you may have come across posts flagged with warnings about misinformation. So far, most misinformation – flagged and unflagged – has been aimed at the general public. Imagine the possibility of misinformation – information that is false or misleading – in scientific and technical […]

Facebook-owned Instagram has made changes to its algorithm after a group of its employees reportedly complained that pro-Palestinian content was not viewable for users during the conflict in Gaza. Instagram typically surfaces original content in its stories before reposted content, but will now begin to give equal weighting to both, the company confirmed to The […]

Featured Scholars

Lecturer in Data Analytics in Social Sciences at the Department of Government and IR (School of Social and Political Sciences) at the University of Sydney
Research Program Manager at the Microsoft Learning Innovation Lab
Professor and Deputy Director of the Centre for Applied Criminology at Birmingham City University
Harvard Kennedy School, Technology and Social Change Research Project