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  • The inconvenient truth about why the truth rarely gets that far
  • The inconvenient truth about why the truth rarely gets that far
    Sergio Gonzalo Cuellar Mansilla, Creative Commons (2014) ©
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Why does misinformation spread online?

Trump’s Presidential win left half the world aghast, and the other half saying ‘I told you so’, raising all kinds of questions about the flow of information online. And it's led to a call for social platforms and media outlets to take some responsibility. But is it too little, too late?

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Some theories suggest that the sophistication of the human language evolved in order for us to gossip. Whether or not this is true, it’s undeniable that we’re social creatures. But the way information spreads from person to person – whether via Chinese whispers or clickbait headlines – means that the truth doesn’t always get that far. And in the wake of some polarising decisions that have been made at the hands of democracy over 2016, this in itself is an inconvenient truth.

The internet has enabled the truth to be twisted beyond recognition. Echo chambers (or ‘filter ...

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