Social media is increasingly used to spread false information (mis/disinformation) at scale, with potentially broad-reaching societal effects. The Facebook data made available via Social Science One gives us a unique opportunity to observe how such content spreads and how users share or interact with it. In this work, we will leverage the Facebook URL Shares and CrowdTangle datasets to conduct formative research at the foundation of the current mis/disinformation phenomenon. Specifically, we will study (1) user behaviors on Facebook (e.g., reactions and clicks) in response to mis/disinformation or related content and (2) potential behavior differences between different groups or types of users. In addition to being of independent scientific and societal interest, our results will support the development of interventions (e.g., user interface designs or user education efforts) to help people interact thoughtfully with potential mis/disinformation and ultimately to curb its spread.
Associate Professor, University of Washington