Contexts of Misinformation

Dis- and misinformation are not created and spread in a vacuum. While concerns over information quality have rocketed to prominence in recent years, those concerns have been fueled by political, social, and technological changes decades in the making. We address some of the contexts of misinformation, beginning with political polarization, and the twin concepts of echo chambers and filter bubbles. 

Live Research Review

Terms such as “fake news,” misinformation, disinformation, propaganda, polarization, and networked harassment have rocketed to prominence in recent years. This literature review addresses some of the contexts of misinformation, beginning with political polarization and the twin concepts of ideological echo chambers and filter bubbles.

Teaching & Learning

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

Latest News on Contexts of Misinformation

ABUJA, Nigeria—Journalists and citizens in the Central African Republic (CAR) have increasingly become targets for Russian mercenaries in the country, according to an investigation by The Daily Beast. Eyewitnesses to Russian aggression in CAR say the violence has continued since the 2018 killings of three Russian journalists who were investigating the local activities of the […]

There’s been a lot of debate recently about “Facebook’s Top 10,” a Twitter account that lists “the top-performing link posts by U.S. Facebook pages in the last 24 hours,” managed by The New York Times’ Kevin Roose. Given that conservative pages tend to dominate the results, the lists have been used to argue that Facebook […]

Over the next week, the phrase “Stop the Steal” was used to promote dozens of rallies that spread false voter fraud claims about the U.S. presidential elections. New research from Avaaz, a global human rights group, the Elections Integrity Partnership and The New York Times shows how a small group of people — mostly right-wing […]

Democrats and Republicans alike have been eagerly grilling the CEOs of social media companies lately about their complicity in spreading disinformation. This is being done under the implied threat that if they don’t do something, Congress will do it for them. I have a problem with this. Two problems, actually. First, everyone would be outraged […]

The largest collection of public internet censorship data ever compiled shows that even citizens of what are considered the world’s freest countries aren’t safe from internet censorship. The University of Michigan team used its own Censored Planet tool, an automated censorship tracking system launched in 2018, to collect more than 21 billion measurements over 20 […]

Featured Scholars

University of Kansas
Assistant Professor of Politics and Public Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs at Princeton University
Harvard Law School, Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society
University of Texas-Austin: School of Journalism, Assistant Professor UT Center for Media Engagement, Program Director