Wisdom of the crowd

Date Posted: June 1, 2019 Last Modified: June 1, 2019
Wisdom of the crowd: Multistakeholder perspectives on the fake news debate Photo: Gerd Altmann, Pixabay

Social media platforms have increasingly come to shape public discourse and accused of engineering people's behaviour in ways that affect democratic functioning. This project creates the much-needed multistakeholder approach to corrective measures against the spread of misinformation. It addresses expert perspectives experts from academia. social media, governments and the industry. 

  • The study choose three democratic countries who have implemented counter-misinformation measures: India, Brazil and Germany. It found tow major shortcoming shared by the three countries. Firstly, there was common ambiguity regarding the definition of the term 'fake news'. Second, there was limited knowledge among legislators in the three countries about the role of algorithms and automation as well as solutions to content regulation.
  • The majority of the experts interviewed held the view that fake news was a social problem exacerbated by technology. Fake news is also fuelled by a clickbait-friendly economy driven by advertisement-based business models.
  • The experts suggested that only a bottom-up, multistakeholder dialogue could produce effective, shared and lasting solutions which respect the rights of users. This is the only viable approach to addressing fake news as the complexity of the issue required a shared solution.