Professor in Political Science and Computer and Information Science

David Lazer

Fake news on Twitter during the 2016 U.S. presidential election

Publication date: 
01/2019
Authors: 
Nir Grinberg
Kenneth Joseph
Lisa Friedland
Briony Swire Thompson
David Lazer
Fake news on Twitter during the 2016 U.S. presidential election

The spread of fake news on social media became a public concern in the United States after the 2016 presidential election. We examined exposure to and sharing of fake news by registered voters on Twitter and found that engagement with fake news sources was extremely concentrated. Only 1% of individuals accounted for 80% of fake news source exposures, and 0.1% accounted for nearly 80% of fake news sources shared. Individuals most likely to engage with fake news sources were conservative leaning, older, and highly engaged with political news. A cluster of fake news sources shared overlapping audiences on the extreme right, but for people across the political spectrum, most political news exposure still came from mainstream media outlets.

Research Areas TOC

Computational Social Science, Collective Cognition

Computational Social Science, 21st Century Democracy, Political Networks, Collective Cognition, Networked Governance, Regulation, DNA and the Criminal Justice System

Computational Social Science, 21st Century Democracy, Political Networks

DNA and the Criminal Justice System