Why we believe fake news
We often feel overwhelmed when we are exposed to a large volume of information. We also rely on secondary knowledge that does not come from any external source.
To put it another way: rightly or wrongly, we think what other people think. The digital culture has taken this reliance on social information to a new level, with new sets of hazards, anxieties, manipulation and influence.
This is a professional note extracted from an online article.
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Infostorms are like actual storms: they are a product of climatic conditions. Different climates can produce different results.
The more we understand the chain of events that led to a particular view, the better we are equipped to appreciate it if we are skeptical or take into account other perspectives.
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There is a fundamental paradigm shift in our relationship to knowledge from 'information age', moving towards the 'reputation age'.
This shift involves valuing information only if it has already been filtered, evaluated and commented upon by others. From this perspective, reputation has become a central pillar or gatekeeper of collective intelligence. We become reliant on biased judgments of other people.
If you are asked why you believe in, for instance, the big changes in climate, you might answer that:
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When you encounter a new claim, look for conflicts of interest. Ask: Do they stand to profit from what they say? Are they affiliated with an organization that could be swaying them? Other questions to consider: What makes the writer or speaker qualified to comment on the topic? What statements have they made in the past?
Is a cognitive bias that makes our feeling towards someone affect how we judge their claims. If we dislike someone, we are a lot more likely to disagree with them; if we like them, we are biased to agree.
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