Consequences of Exposure

What happens when individuals are exposed to misinformation? Researchers are studying effects on the societies in which those individuals live, communicate, and make decisions. One of the biggest challenges is measuring the actual effects of misinformation. Scholars have employed ethnographic and behavioral science techniques to try to tease out the ramifications of contaminated information environments.

Live Research Review


This Live Research Review is scheduled for publication in the coming months. In the meantime, you can find articles related to this topic in our Citation Library.

Teaching & Learning

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

Latest News on Consequences of Exposure

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently revised its guidance to acknowledge that COVID-19 can be spread through tiny airborne particles, known as aerosols. It had earlier removed a similar guidance from its website, saying it was “posted in error.” Similarly, there have been conflicting messages from the Trump administration regarding the use of […]

Using conspiracy theories that include child sex traffickers and restaurants serving human flesh, QAnon has unleashed a modern-day moral panic. It is now more than 30 years since sociologists proposed moral panic as a way to understand the incitement of fear around a perceived enemy. In the opening paragraph of his canonical study of popular […]

In recent months, Facebook and YouTube have moved aggressively to interrupt the flow of disinformation, in part by banning QAnon groups and channels. More broadly, Facebook and Twitter have asserted their prerogative to slow the spread of iffy news stories and take down the musings of Holocaust deniers. But the moves against QAnon come too […]

Pew Research Center’s American News Pathways project conducted this study to understand how Americans are engaging with and perceiving news coverage of the 2020 presidential election and the COVID-19 pandemic. For this analysis, we surveyed 10,059 U.S. adults between Oct. 6-12, 2020. Everyone who completed the survey is a member of Pew Research Center’s American […]

People who receive reminders of past misinformation may form new factual memories with greater fidelity, according to an article published in the journal Psychological Science. Past research highlights one insidious side of fake news: The more you encounter the same misinformation — for instance, that world governments are covering up the existence of flying saucers […]

Featured Scholars

University of Texas-Austin: School of Journalism, Assistant Professor UT Center for Media Engagement, Program Director
Professor and Deputy Director of the Centre for Applied Criminology at Birmingham City University
Associate Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison