Defining “Disinformation”

What are dis- and misinformation? What about propaganda and “fake news?” How are researchers and activists defining these terms, and how are those definitions evolving? This introductory literature review addresses both contemporary and historical examples of disinformation and misinformation in mass media, and discusses the importance of a unified set of definitions in the social sciences. 

Live Research Review

What are dis- and misinformation? What about propaganda and “fake news?” How are researchers and activists defining these terms, and how are those definitions evolving? This introductory research review discusses the importance of a unified set of definitions in the social sciences.

Latest News on Defining "Disinformation"

The University of Washington Information School seeks a truly outstanding scholar to broaden and deepen our research and scholarship in areas including, but not limited to: studies of misinformation and disinformation, including computational, mixed-methods approaches, etc.; information access and data literacy; information flow in sociotechnical systems; the role of information in the formation and dynamics […]

Given trends towards misinformation, weaponized communications, information overload, and polarization in our online information ecosystem, what are potential solutions for promoting truth and trust online? Over the course of two days in October, groups actively working in this space convened to present their findings and trade tips. Organized by a diversity of researchers and practitioners […]

The promise of the digital age encouraged us to believe that only positive changes would come when we lived in hyper-connected communities able to access any information we needed with a click or a swipe. But this idealised vision has been swiftly replaced by a recognition that our information ecosystem is now dangerously polluted and […]

The language surrounding misinformation seems to change as fast as the tactics used by the people who spread it. Terms that once meant one thing — “fake news,” for example — now mean something else, or are used so differently by different people that they have lost a common meaning. For people like us, who write about […]

On July 22, 2019, Knight made a $50 million investment to develop a new field of research around technology’s impact on democracy, including a $5 million investment in The George Washington University (GW) to create the Institute for Data, Democracy, and Politics. GW president Thomas J. LeBlanc shares details below.  As a computer scientist, I like data. […]

Featured Scholars

Colorado State University
Harvard Kennedy School, Technology and Social Change Research Project
Associate Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison