Can journalists give a "jab" against misinformation?
Misinformation is like a virus that spreads quickly from person to person, making some people "sicker" than others. Like viruses, misinformation has a source, needs a means of transmission, and will affect the most vulnerable in particular. Epidemiologists know that to stop an infection they need to block one of these elements.
Lies, half-truths, and manipulation of information have probably existed since humans live socially, communicate with each other and establish relationships. Silencing those who promote misinformation or controlling the bad quality information circulating on social media (and beyond) seems an impossible task. The solution might lie in making people less vulnerable to infection.
Fact-checking is like a treatment that has been used against the disinformation virus, but this treatment does not reach all the people who have been infected — it does not spread as widely as misinformation, and some people simply choose not to engage with this corrected information. On the other hand, like viruses and the diseases caused by them, inoculation may be the best way to prevent infection.
How can science journalists inoculate people against misinformation, what results can be achieved, what is the role of treatments (such as fact-checking) and how can they be applied, will be some of the topics to be discussed in this session.
- Day: March 29, 2023
- Time: from 2:00pm to 3:15pm
- Room: Salon Restrepo Salon 3
Moderator: Purple Romero, Vera Novais
Speakers: Juliane von Reppert-Bismarck, Rakoen Maertens