Lies, spies and big data: How fake news is rewriting political landscapes

Date Posted: May 28, 2019 Last Modified: May 28, 2019
Lies, spies and big data: How fake news Is rewriting political landscapes Photo: Darron Birgenheier

The aftermath of the 2016 US Presidential election saw an increasing concern in the rise of fake news and its effect on political landscapes. This policy brief provides and overview on the changing nature of the gathering and dissemination of news in a globalised digital world. It also attempts to define 'fake news' and the extent to which it might have influenced the US election results. 

  • The recent election in the US and the UK were overshadowed by misinformation and disinformation campaigns. The researchers find that while media manipulation may have affected election results, it did not change opinions but rather amplified the voice of the opposition.
  • Social media activity might have influenced the election results but it is the traditional media that keeps the government in check.
  • The US elections have brought up multiple opportunities to establish mutual trust between the US and Russia. Both countries need to address major security issues with these conversations acting as a key to building trust in "Brand Russia" as it prepares for the World Cup.
  • While major news outlets highlight fake news with a big red stamp, there needs to be a demand for correction or clarification from media editors in order to better highlight and understand falsification.