Causes and consequences of mainstream media dissemination of fake news: literature review and synthesis

Yariv Tsfati*, H.G. Boomgaarden, J. Strömbäck, R. Vliegenthart, A. Damstra, E. Lindgren

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Research indicates that the reach of fake news websites is limited to small parts of the population. On the other hand, data demonstrate that large proportions of the public know about notable fake news stories and believe them. These findings imply the possibility that most people hear about fake news stories not from fake news websites but through their coverage in mainstream news outlets. Thus far, only limited attention has been directed to the role of mainstream media in the dissemination of disinformation. To remedy this, this article synthesizes the literature pertaining to understand the role mainstream media play in the dissemination of fake news, the reasons for such coverage and its influences on the audience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-173
Number of pages17
JournalAnnals of the International Communication Association
Volume44
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • disinformation
  • fact checking
  • Fake news

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