Wedge Issues

Some disinformation is obviously political, such as that targeting opposing parties. But other disinformation campaigns attempt to take political advantage of other rifts in societies, such as those rooted in ethnicity, religion, social class, and other markers of identity. This literature explores case studies on those wedge issues, including climate change, U.S. race tensions, and the anti-vaccine movement. 

Live Research Reviews

The pandemic moment has unleashed contagions of stigmatization and health misinformation, compounding the adverse health and socioeconomic effects of Covid-19 on marginalized communities. In this Live Research Review, Jonathan Corpus Ong discusses emerging findings on racially targeted disinformation and opportunistic legislation.

Vaccine refusal poses a major public health risk, especially in light of the Covid-19 pandemic. Even though vaccines are safe and effective, there have been undercurrents of distrust for decades. However, the affordances of interactive media have allowed hesitant parents to encounter misinformation, and producers of anti-vaccine disinformation to reach new audiences.

Teaching & Learning

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

Latest News on Wedge Issues

From an app that allows users to swap images of women and men into pornographic videos to the use of computer-generated faces in online fraud, deepfake videos are an increasingly visible manifestation of the dark side of artificial intelligence. As their use grows, legislators and policymakers are struggling to come up with appropriate solutions and […]

Top Republicans in the Senate are advancing a campaign of disinformation over the debt ceiling as they seek to distort the reasons for needing to raise the nation’s borrowing cap, after they dropped their blockade on averting a US debt default in a bipartisan manner. The Senate on Thursday passed a bill to allow the […]

When Facebook was down for most of the day on Oct. 4, 2021, did you miss it, were you relieved or some of both? Social scientists have compiled an expansive body of research that shows how people have come to develop a love-hate relationship with the social media giant with nearly 3 billion users. Many […]

Mark Zuckerberg has hit back at the testimony of the Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, saying her claims the company puts profit over people’s safety are “just not true”. In a blogpost, the Facebook founder and chief executive addressed one of the most damaging statements in Haugen’s opening speech to US senators on Tuesday, that Facebook […]

Estherina Bewintara, a 29-year-old mother and designer in Jakarta, normally processes orders for her online furniture shop once her baby is asleep, typically between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m. But on Monday night, as she was coordinating a stock update over a WhatsApp call, she noticed something was wrong. “I thought it was the Wi-Fi,” […]

Featured Scholars

University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Associate Professor in the School of Journalism and the Department of Sociology (by courtesy), University of Texas at Austin
Director, Research and Knowledge Dissemination, The Jed Foundation
University of North Carolina