When Do Details Matter? Source Rating Summaries and Details in the Fight against Fake News on Social Media

45 Pages Posted: 14 Sep 2019

See all articles by Antino Kim

Antino Kim

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Operation & Decision Technologies

Patricia Moravec

University of Texas at Austin - Red McCombs School of Business; Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Operation & Decision Technologies

Alan R. Dennis

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Operation & Decision Technologies

Date Written: September 6, 2019

Abstract

The rise of fake news has become a major concern for social media platforms and their users. One possible solution is to attach a rating of the source that produced the article (based on past fact-checking results) to every article when it is first published (as opposed to a rating for each article individually). We conducted two online experiments to investigate the effects of a summary indicator of source rating (an icon) and detailed source rating information (a descriptive label) on user’s belief in news articles on social media. We found that negative summary indicators reduced social media users’ beliefs in the articles, but positive summary indicators had little influence. In contrast, the detailed rating information both increased and decreased belief, with positive rating details increasing belief and negative rating details decreasing belief. We also found confirmation bias to be prominent; users were more likely to believe articles that aligned with their prior opinions. Users were more likely to exert cognitive effort to examine the rating details when the articles aligned with their pre-exiting opinions, but the nature of the summary indicator (positive or negative) had no effect on this choice.

Keywords: Fake news, disinformation, social media, source rating, rating details, dual process cognition

Suggested Citation

Kim, Antino and Moravec, Patricia and Dennis, Alan R., When Do Details Matter? Source Rating Summaries and Details in the Fight against Fake News on Social Media (September 6, 2019). Kelley School of Business Research Paper No. 19-52. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3448932 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3448932

Antino Kim (Contact Author)

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Operation & Decision Technologies ( email )

Business 670
1309 E. Tenth Street
Bloomington, IN 47401
United States
812.855.2905 (Phone)

Patricia Moravec

University of Texas at Austin - Red McCombs School of Business ( email )

Austin, TX 78712
United States

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Operation & Decision Technologies ( email )

Business 670
1309 E. Tenth Street
Bloomington, IN 47401
United States

Alan R. Dennis

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Operation & Decision Technologies ( email )

Business 670
1309 E. Tenth Street
Bloomington, IN 47401
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
98
Abstract Views
405
rank
289,691
PlumX Metrics