Politics

Poynter Results

  • Tweeters tend to share fact checks that confirm their partisan biases

    Drawing upon a Twitter dataset from the 2012 United States presidential election, this study examines the motives that partisan social media have to share fact checks. Researchers analyzed messages and comments related to fact checks posted on the Twitter accounts of PolitiFact, Factcheck.org and The Washington Post Fact Checker in Oct. 2012, when several debates were took place. Specifically, they looked at 93,578 comments from 55,869 unique Twitter users on 194 original fact checks, coded how each party would perceive the ratings and used a computational approach of users' past tweets to evaluate their political leanings. The study found that fact checks that were positive for the ingroup party were shared more by ingroup members than outgroup members. In short, people shared the fact checks that played into their partisan biases.

    Study Title
    Partisan Selective Sharing: The Biased Diffusion of Fact-Checking Messages on Social Media
    Study Publication Date
    Study Authors
    Jieun Shin, Kjerstin Thorson

    Keywords:

    Journal
    Journal of Communication
    Peer Reviewed
    Yes
    Sample
    Representative
    Inferential approach
    Experimental
    Number of studies citing
    6
  • Fact-checking Marine Le Pen corrected misperceptions but didn't affect voting preferences

    Researchers surveyed French individuals online in four regions where the far-right Front National party (FN) had done best in the 2016 regional elections. Respondents were put into one of four groups; the first received false claims on immigration made by Marine Le Pen, the FN's presidential candidate and the second obtained statistics on the same issues. The other two groups were given both or neither, respectively. Across all groups, the researchers tested respondents' understanding of the facts, their support for Le Pen on immigration and their voting intentions. Overall, knowledge of the facts was negatively affected when respondents only read Le Pen's claims but improved when they were offered the facts alone or both the facts and Le Pen's claims. More surprisingly, the intention to vote for Le Pen improved not just among respondents subjected to her claims but also among respondents who were offered the facts alone.

    Study Title
    Facts, Alternative Facts, and Fact Checking in Times of Post-Truth Politics
    Study Publication Date
    Study Authors
    Oscar Barrera, Sergei Guriev, Emeric Henry, Ekaterina Zhuravskaya
    Journal
    SSRN
    Peer Reviewed
    Yes
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