Misinformation in Times of Crisis

Toni G.L.A. van der Meer (PI) and Yan Jin (Co-PI). “Misinformation in Times of Crisis,” funded by the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (€3,080), University of Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2017.

Abstract: In times of crisis, when information spreads fast and the public need for information is at its highest, misinformation can play a crucial role in the understanding of a crisis and how it develops. This raises questions about the challenge of correcting opinions and beliefs based on misinformation and how these incorrect perceptions can intensive the crisis and its impact. So far, crisis communication research and research on misinformation have not yet found common ground. This study aims to bridge these two fields of research by experimentally testing the effect of misinformation and corrective information. To test the role of multiple actors (e.g., organization central to the crisis, news media, members of the public), this empirical study compares the effect of the source of information in combination with type of misinformation and corrective information in the context of a crisis and aims to expose the cognitive and affective mechanisms behind the effect of misinformation.

Yan Jin 

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