Trial suggests “Vaccine” to combat false news

Jan 25, 2017, 4:43 AM EST
(Source: PROHerry Lawford/flickr)
(Source: PROHerry Lawford/flickr)

A recent report published in the journal Global Challenges claimed that people can be saved from the dangers of fake news if they are “inoculated” with warnings that misinformation is circling around. The finding comes at a time when social media platforms are battling hard to devise novel tools and technologies to combat the circulation of hoaxes.

The researchers from the University of Cambridge, Yale University, and George Mason University, who conducted the experiment, found that the method of “inoculation” is more potent than correcting the misinformation after it is presented, reports Quartz.

Insertion of preemptive warning between scientifically-backed true statement and a false statement, prompted the participants in the experiment, to accept the true information over the fake one, writes Live Science. The preference grew even stronger when the fake piece of news was presented with a detailed debunking.