Conservatives are likely to believe misinformation | Science and Ecology | DW

Conservatives in America are less able than liberals to distinguish between facts and lies in politics, mainly due to an overabundance of disinformation on the part of the right wing. According to a study published on Wednesday (02/06/2021) in the journal Science Advances.

A group of researchers from Ohio State University (OSU) concluded that while both sides of the political spectrum tend to believe statements that reinforce their views, conservatives are more accepting of lies and rejecting facts.

The analysis, which ran for six months, found that this occurs “because there is a lot of misinformation that supports conservative attitudes,” according to study author Kelly Jarrett, professor of communications at Ohio State University.

The group led by Jarrett came to these conclusions after analyzing the results of an online survey of 1,204 American adults between January and June 2019.

Every two weeks, researchers identified viral political news stories, 10 true and 10 false, and asked participants to rate 20 sentences based on those stories.

One of the main problems identified in the study was that, according to Garrett, these widely shared truths and lies “have different implications for liberals and conservatives.”

“We have seen that pervasive political lies tend to benefit conservatives, while facts tend to favor liberals. This makes it more difficult for conservatives to avoid misperceptions,” Garrett said.

The results showed that even when the environment was taken into account, conservatives were slightly more likely to have misperceptions than liberals.

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Aileen Morales

"Beer nerd. Food fanatic. Alcohol scholar. Tv practitioner. Writer. Troublemaker. Falls down a lot."

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