If this is the effect of debunking...


There is only one way out, really.

And is always the same.

If this is the effect of debunking... /img/debunkers-be-like.jpg

A prominent approach to combating online misinformation is to debunk false content. But, says a paper just published, its authors found

“causal evidence that being corrected [on Twitter] decreases the quality, and increases the partisan slant and language toxicity, of the users’ subsequent retweets (but has no significant effect on primary tweets). This suggests that being publicly corrected by another user shifts one’s attention away from accuracy.”

Or, as the paper subtitle puts it, even 100% accurate, good faith correction of social media users who posted false political news can have the perverse consequence of [INCREASING] Subsequent Sharing of Low Quality, Partisan, and Toxic Content”.

If that study is correct…

If that study is correct (and anybody who ever spent more than 30 minutes on social media already knew that it must be at least partly correct…) then there is only one way out of this mess, and is not individual, personal digital detox strategies. It is regulation of social media that makes them:

Image source: Debunking Chemtrails, at Imgur

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