Why Fact Checking Does Not Work!

I admit I was harsh in my headline, the truth is a bit more complex!

"Observations indicate that although extreme implausibility is a boundary condition of the illusory truth effect, only a small degree of potential plausibility is sufficient for repetition to increase perceived accuracy. As a consequence, the scope and impact of repetition on beliefs is far greater than perceived in the past."


Basically, take a lie, make it big and repeat it often! Yes someone really infamous said this, In fact many infamous men over the years have used this same strategy.

Got it? Well it took me a couple of reading as well of this study. So lets deep dive into what does it really mean.

"... this 'illusory truth effect' for fake news headlines occurs despite a low level of overall believability, and even when the stories are labeled as contested by fact-checkers or are inconsistent with the reader’s political ideology. These results suggest that social media platforms help to incubate belief in blatantly false news stories, and that tagging such stories as disputed is not an effective solution to this problem."

And while fact checking is a solution many social media platforms are investing in, sadly the outcome is not at all effective. The human mind tends to believe what we see, or at least if we have seen it, its good enough to create a doubt in our mind.

In the current flood of #FakeNews it's not enough to flag content as being #Fake, as once the user has viewed it, the damage has been done, and more often one views it the stronger is the misinformation narrative.

Though this is bordering censorship, we need to ensure social media platforms follow a stricter more efficient policies when it comes to political fake news. Keeping the content on is actually very harmful for our country.

The most shocking part is that even the young and most educated are unable to differentiate between real and fake online, as shown by this research done by stanford.