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Elections & Voting

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Elections & Disinformation

Green and blue infographic on elections and disinformation. Title: Identifying false narratives and conspiracy theories. Steps include Is the Source Credible? What are Credible Sources Saying? What Are Fact Checkers Saying? Is Your Investigation Neutral? Is this an AI-Enabled  Deepfake? Does It Evoke a Strong Emotional Reaction?Elections and Disinformation: Identifying False Narratives and Conspiracy Theories

Journalists Tiffany Hsu, Stuart A. Thompson and Steven Lee Myers cover the crucial issue of election-related disinformation in the article "Elections and Disinformation Are Colliding Like Never Before in 2024."

In the New York Times special feature, the authors note that this cycle of elections coincides with decreased social media protections, advances in artificial intelligence, a global wave of extremism, and multiple sources of information operations/warfare. 

More than ever, we're being subjected to false narratives and conspiracy theories about candidates and issues related to the 2024 presidential election--and it's critical that we be able to identify it in our information ecosystems.  

Here are questions to ask yourself: 

Is the source credible?

Check the "About" page of a website to see if it contains detailed information, such as its value, ownership, funding, location, and contact information. 

What are credible sources saying? 

Search the issue on trustworthy sites--this process is called lateral reading. If the facts reported by credible sources don't align with the content you're reviewing, don't share it. 

What are fact checkers saying? 

It's easy to believe things that confirm our views. If a claim seems too good to be true, see whether a trustworthy fact-checking organization has evaluated it and provided additional context. 

Is your investigation neutral? 

Make sure you are using unbiased search language and remain open-minded to evidence that might contradict your beliefs. 

Is this video a deepfake?

How well can ordinary people tell the difference between a deepfake (video manipulated by AI) and a normal, non-altered video? There are many subtle signs that a video has been algorithmically manipulated. With practice, people can build intuition for identifying what is fake and what is real. You can practice trying to detect DeepFakes at Detect Fakes

Does the information evoke a strong emotional reaction?

If the content makes you feel shocked, angry, or sad, consider that its purpose may be to get you to respond emotionally and share it without confirming its accuracy. 

By using these steps to quickly assess controversial news, videos, or images, you can avoid sharing with others and help combat the problem of corrosive online content. 

Find Information at the Library

Find Information on the Web

You will find a lot of political and elections news on the Web. Here are some reliable sources for you to use:

Election 2024 Coverage: Google Feed

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