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Why we're susceptible to fake news, how to defend against it

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posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 06:48 AM
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Source: American Psychological Association

Summary:Thought processes and belief systems that people develop early in life to help protect against the anxiety and stress of an uncertain world may help explain why some individuals fall victim to what has come to be known as fake news, but psychologists can offer some strategies to defend against it.

Thought processes and belief systems that people develop early in life to help protect against the anxiety and stress of an uncertain world may help explain why some individuals fall victim to what has come to be known as fake news, but psychologists can offer some strategies to defend against it, according to a series of presentations at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association.

[Edit for brevity. We all know what "confirmation bias" is. --DJW001]

Parents commonly encourage young children to engage in pretend play. Through this pretend play, children often practice little life scenarios, like playing house, that help to reinforce cultural norms and beliefs and aid in assimilation as they age. The flip side is that children also learn that sometimes it's OK to make believe things are true, even though they know they are not, according to Eve Whitmore.

In adolescence, people develop critical thinking skills and some begin to question what they were taught as children, perhaps religious beliefs or even the belief that authority figures such as parents or government leaders are always right. But going against one's parents' beliefs can cause friction within the family, and, despite evidence to the contrary, some are willing to rationalize those false beliefs in order to avoid upsetting their parents, she said.

[Edit for brevity. --DJW001]

Psychology offers a few evidence-based strategies for defending against the pull of fake news, according to Mark Whitmore. One key to avoiding the pull of confirmation bias is reducing the anxiety that makes it so appealing.

"One positive defense strategy is humor. Watching late night comedy or political satire, while not actually altering or changing the source of the stressor, can help reduce the stress and anxiety associated with it," he said. "Another is sublimation, where you channel your negative feelings into something positive, such as running for office, marching in a protest or volunteering for a social cause."

He also recommends that people cultivate an open mind by deliberately exposing themselves to different points of view. This can help them moderate their viewpoints and make them less extreme, he said.

Critical thinking is also key. People must learn to question what they are told and this should begin in childhood, said Mark Whitmore.

"Developing a greater degree of skepticism in children, by encouraging them to ask why and to question, diminishes confirmation bias," he said. "All of these strategies have substantial research supporting their beneficial effects."


Full article here.

In other words, there are two paths to accepting "fake news." Childhood make-believe is rewarded by parents because it reinforces social norms. Adolescents acquire critical thinking and may reject some of those norms. If you cling to parental approval, you reject the fruit of your critical thought and are susceptible to "conservative fake news." If you remain stuck in adolescent rebellion, you are inclined to accept "liberal fake news." The only cure? Genuine open mindedness, an ability to let go of false assumptions, and above all, critical thinking. (Humor helps.)




posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 07:06 AM
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Turn off your TV and turn on your computer or phone...with TV you are a CAPTIVE at least onine you HAVE A CHANCE to FIND THE TRUTH using your own judgement...on MSM you are FED BULLSPIT...100% controlled fully paid for BULLSPIT...this means you are fed LIES...and it means you are then a BOON to society you have been jumped into a gang and you don't even know it.



posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 07:12 AM
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a reply to: one4all

Please explain why commercial media is worse than, say, attending a mega-church where political rants substitute for religious preaching? What techniques do you use to determine whether what you read online is true, or merely confirms your bias?
edit on 11-8-2018 by DJW001 because: (no reason given)

edit on 11-8-2018 by DJW001 because: Edit to polish style. --DJW001



posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 07:59 AM
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originally posted by: DJW001
a reply to: one4all

Please explain why commercial media is worse than, say, attending a mega-church where political rants substitute for religious preaching? What techniques do you use to determine whether what you read online is true, or merely confirms your bias?



The techniques I use are simple....lie to me once and you screw your credibility with me forever which means you no longer get my time or viewership....the group dynamics found in all Churches are complicated and are willfully engaged in....these people create a status quo based agreed upon reality which they share......MSM lies to us on our TV sets as they try to endgender us into this exact same dynamic on a greater scale.....they are trying to HERD us into developing what WE THINK ARE FREE-WILL group status quo based realities.....in short yes the same methods are used to control people by many big groups....in fact ALL BIG GROUPS use these same methods because they are based upon the core values of the human mind and body.

MSM is privately owned so you see NOTHING THAT IS NOT VETTED....you have no hope of finding truth...online it is open season on lies and on truths....there you can AT LEAST have a CHANCE to find the truth using your own judgement....MSM has cornered the market on your brain by having complete control over what goes on your TV set...and what goes on your so-called NEWS.


I just watched an Apartment complex 100 feet away from me burn to cinders....I watched the fire work its way out of a suite and begin to consume the building from the outside.....the official storyline is a cigarette butt in a balcony planter which officially makes it an accident.....over 20 million in damages....the woman who was in the suite didn't smoke and didn't have plants on her balcony.She has been my neighbor for nearly a decade....the Caretaker of the damaged Building also knows her and concurs she does not nor ever did smoke or have plants on her balcony.....are you catching my drift here pal....I GAVE the lead investigator video and stills of the fire AS IT WAS EVOLVING AND GROWING FROM THE INSIDE TO THE OUTSIDE....the burn pattern shows the same thing on the outside of the building...and he blew me off and told me to just send my info to the Fire Dept like everyone else.....the MSM storyline taken from the Fire Investigators was a cigarette butt in a planter.....this is IMPOSSIBLE....and I WATCHED IT LIVE as it grew and grew and then blew its way out of her Apt. balcony doors and then it was like a MASSIVE BLAST FURNACE...….I have video and stills....but the MSM/Fire Investogator storyline is completely different...…. we have recently been bombarded with massive repeats of MSM data saying that over 50 fires have been started in our City by cigarettes being put into planters....here is the catch....the con-jobs wish to force us to voluntarily ASK THEM to expedite by-laws to protect ourselves from this BIG DANGER by----- which they will surely do by outlawing plants in rental units smoking is already policed so this leaves only the plants that can be policed ......….right now the idea of allowing Canadians to grow MJ plants legally in their homes is being decided upon by different constituencies....some are denying the right and some are allowing it...there are BIG PUSHES IN BOTH DIRECTIONS......on one side we have the Real Estate Boards who have worked with the Insurance companies to RIPP OFF HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS from people by claiming that ALL HOUSES WITH ANY MJ GROWN IN THEM ARE POISONED GROW HOUSES WHCH NEED TO BE REMEDIATED OR TORN DOWN WITH TORN DOWN BEING CHEAPER IN MOST CASES.....this was a part of the big MJ lie that was told for decades and they got caught up in it......hundreds of millions of dollars worth of overvalued homes were paid out under insurance scams like this.....buy a dump...overvalue then insure it...rent it to a grow op....make lots of money then when you are ready make an Anonymous call to your Police Dept. and then let them do the rest as you NOW COLLECT A FAT LUMP SUM FROM YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY......because some druggy ruined your 600,000 dollar rental house growing 3 million worth of MJ.....lol....lol..and now regular people will be able to legally cultivate plants in their own homes and will immediately learn that this was a huge load of BS that every house with MJ illegally grown in it was a write-off or was poisoned.....lol...lol...there is hundreds of millions of dollars worth of explaining to do...…..so ….of course it is in the best interests of the collusive agencies who work together to do everything they can to prevent people from learning this truth from growing in their own homes legally and coming to the eventual conclusion that they have all been lied to...by an ORGANISED GROUP....so we see the MSM and Canadian Real Estate Board and Fire Invest. and Insurance Companies working together to build and embedd sympathetic dynamics which support their overall goals....some people call this collusion.

As usual the MSM is the lynchpin of their actions.....it literally POUNDS into peoples brains whatever lies they wish to propogate....but its ALWAYS FOR A REASON...never ever random.


They want US to ask THEM to give us a by-law to stop their imaginary scare tactics....then they will modify said by-laws to benefit themselves and push them through in an expedited manner.They don't want people execrcising their Federally stated and supported RIGHT to grow MJ in their own homes....because they don't people to learn the lies they have been told about what happens to homes MJ is grown inside of...they do not want their Canadian Real Estate Board and Insurance Company and Civic Investigators to be OUTED for their collusionary actions.

So the MSM is a con-job from top to bottom....yes they present excuses that are teflon and they pretend to be non-biased....lol...for goodness sakes TV stations commonly hire Actors and Actresses which is what Broadcasters really are......

We are suceptible to fake news because our Governments allow private ownership of MSM and they allow TV to be a Monopoly owned by private interests.....they allow direct lies to be beamed into our homes...the most non-humanitarian thing possible.
edit on 11-8-2018 by one4all because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 09:46 AM
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edit on 11-8-2018 by stormcell because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 11:58 AM
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a reply to: DJW001

Nice post dj. I found myself agreeing throughout the post and read the article. It explains a lot.

A few paragraphs that struck me from the article that were not brought up in your quotes are



"In this way, childhood beliefs persevere throughout a person's life and serve as a framework for processing information in adulthood," he said. "In attempting to confirm preconceived ideas, a person may resort to both fiction and reality in order to preserve these beliefs."

The rise of the internet and social media has only compounded the problem of fake news, according to Mark Whitmore, upending the traditional news model where an individual receives information from a small number of outlets.

"In today's media environment, the channels are multiple, and the messages are often simultaneous and contradictory," he said. "The receiver is often faced with paradoxical and seemingly absurd messages. It becomes easier to cling to a simple fiction than a complicated reality."


First this notion that a person may resort to both fiction and reality is freeking huge if you ask me. Fiction abounds in two forms, art and lies. And if what this psychological theory holds to be true, then the immaturity of people trying to process this information is likely not up to the task of determining one from the other.

Second, the idea that the internet compounds the problem is again, freeeeking huge. It used to be that young maturing people had only the one story of the tribe, or later the civilization from which to receive information and that information was for the most part a unified story or narrative. As we can see this is no longer the case. Maybe there was some varience as information would filter in from other tribes or national story lines but those were easily rejected as the need to blend with ones more homogeneous local interpretations.

Maybe I missed the part suggesting the difference between those who are susceptible to right wing fake news and left wing fake news. Are you saying that people who are stuck in childhood approval needs are more likely to become believers in conservative fake news and others who have managed to get by that childhood approval need and entered into a teenage ''rebellion'' phase are more likely to be susceptible to left wing fake news?

It's almost like traps are set up against maturity. That maturity is something that does not just happen to us but rather something that needs conscious direction to navigate the treacheries of abandoning previously held beliefs that served us only for brief periods of development.

Any way DJ, this is a good OP and I am glad to have found it. Unfortunate that it at this point at least has found little light on our boards.



posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 04:50 PM
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a reply to: DJW001

I don't see this as all that helpful. To apply it you would have to explain it to a preadolescent or at least an adolescent and hope they can use it. Anything later is not helpful except maybe to correct errors by giving insight. At that point, they have already developed wrong approaches and will likely not understand this properly as well.

I grew up during the Vietnam era and believed pretty much all the fake news of that time. When you are young, that is pretty much all you have to go on. It wasn't until I gained experience in the real world that I was able to see the reality of it. Continued learning about whatever I was interested in didn't hurt either.

So I believe the best ways to not be fooled are to acquire experience and maturity. Yes, humor helps also.
edit on 11-8-2018 by toms54 because: spelling



posted on Aug, 11 2018 @ 09:15 PM
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Complete garbage.



posted on Aug, 12 2018 @ 10:32 AM
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originally posted by: coffeebeernsmokes
Complete garbage.


What, exactly, is "complete garbage?" Please explain. Use references where necessary.



posted on Aug, 12 2018 @ 10:35 AM
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a reply to: toms54


I don't see this as all that helpful. To apply it you would have to explain it to a preadolescent or at least an adolescent and hope they can use it.


This is actually a useful guide for parents. You should reinforce independent thought by your children, rather than making approval conditional on their obedience to your authority.



posted on Aug, 12 2018 @ 11:20 AM
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a reply to: one4all


MSM is privately owned so you see NOTHING THAT IS NOT VETTED.


If the government "vets" something it is censorship. Sorry about your distress over the fire. I do not know what your local politics is like, but when there is a major fire, there is a lot of insurance money on the line. The building's owner might prefer that a fire be due to a tenant's negligence rather than the owner's failure to meet building code. Local media may or may not investigate stories beyond reporting the official explanation. That is not a "lie," it is sloppy journalism.



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