Berkman Klein Center analyzed 55,000 news stories, five million tweets, and 75,000 public Facebook posts to discover that it's "Trump, the Republican National Committee, and Fox News — not Facebook spammers and Russian trolls — who are the primary drivers of misinformation around mail-in voting fraud", taking advantage of three standard journalistic practices:
Democracy relies on journalism, but journalism relies on politicians respecting democracy. When politicians don't, these journalistic practices propagate harm. What's new about this analysis is GP's planning:
"Throughout the first six months of the disinformation campaign, the Republican National Committee (RNC) and staff from the Trump campaign appear repeatedly and consistently on message at the same moments... supported by the right-wing media ecosystem, primarily Fox News and talk radio functioning ... as a party press ".
Paper also analyses “three competing conceptions of how public opinion is shaped”:
Only around 30% of Americans — "people who rely on local TV for news, who aren’t die-hard Fox News viewers or New York Times subscribers" — are persuadable one way or another. Traditional media has a huge responsibility here - with "the mass media model ... the primary driver of information disorder, it will not be cured by more fact checking on Facebook".
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