Educate yourself

False information is shared by many people who intentionally want to mislead people, and many unaware people fall for this.

In order to avoid the further spread of misinformation, we should learn the tricks they use to manipulate us.

  • Prebunking - this is a type of debunking that happens before you hear myths and lies.
  • Play games dedicated to teaching you the tricks headline baiters use.

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7 ways to avoid becoming a misinformation superspreader

ideas.ted.com

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Stand with other people

Allowing misinformation to spread only makes it more likely for people to start believing it, so when you see someone stand up against a person for sharing misinformation, join in on the conversation.

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Every post you share is not only for yourself but it will be seen by other people. Make sure to double-check your sources with other contents that have low biases and high fact ratings in order to find sources you can actually deem trustworthy.

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Research says that people who underestimate their biases are actually more vulnerable to being misled than those who acknowledge their biases.

There is a thing we call "confirmation bias" and this happened when a person is biased towards believing information that is already aligned with what they believe in may t be politically, religiously, or by ethnicity or nationality.

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Before sharing something online, consider the consequences of doing so and ask yourself whether the link you're sharing is true; has it been fact-checked? 

Misinformation is shared quickly and without much thought to be conscious of your actions and your behaviors and control your impulses.

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People share things on social media because of their emotions mindlessly all the time. Those who view their accounts in an emotional mindset, mainly anger and anxiety are the culprits, are more likely to share misinformation than those with a rational state of mind.

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  • Humans trust other humans more than they trust algorithms or bots, most especially those in our own social circle. Stand up against misinformation publicly.
  • This is not to say to aggressively argue with the person or mock them but rather to approach them firmly with specific reasoning and providing counterevidence about how the information being shared is fake.
  • The additional benefit to this is that when one publicly debunks a shared link other viewers will be discouraged to share it.

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Healthy skepticism does not mean you’re dismissing everything as false — it simply means remembering the things you hear or read in the media could be false, but they could also be true. Or they could be something in between.

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Turn Off Your Notifications

When you stop notifications from disturbing your normal routine, you might find it easier to concentrate on your daily tasks and not get distracted so easily. Notifications are a constant reminder that something is happening in the online world and you might feel like you're missing out. So to quell your FOMO, turn off your notifications. The bonus is, when you do come around to checking your social media, you may have a build up of more notifications which will make it more exciting and will make the experience more rewarding.

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Why We Have An Information Epidemic

We have a never ending stream of information coming at us, leaving our mind exhausted, with no energy left to engage, debate, analyse or refute the epistemic (epidemic of knowledge).

Uncertainty, polarization and misinformation are the three musketeers of this information overload.

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3 reasons for information exhaustion – and what to do about it

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