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Wed Dec 7, 2016, 11:26 AM

Why conservatives might be more likely to fall for fake news

This week, a North Carolina man took an AR-15 rifle into DC's Comet Ping Pong pizza restaurant to "self-investigate" a fake internet conspiracy theory involving Hillary Clinton, John Podesta and a child sex ring.

It's the latest example of the impact that "fake news" -- untrue or wildly misleading stories masquerading as fact, usually to appeal to a particular worldview -- is having on the real world.

Numerous reports have highlighted how fake news creators began targeting conservative readers after finding them receptive to stories that reinforced their existing worldview. As one fake news creator told NPR, "We've tried to do [fake news with] liberals. It just has never worked, it never takes off. You'll get debunked within the first two comments and then the whole thing just kind of fizzles out."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/12/07/why-conservatives-might-be-more-likely-to-fall-for-fake-news/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.418565ec2ad2

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 11:35 AM

1. Interesting.

So people who are on the liberal side of the divide are more likely to think critically about what they read. Hmmmm.

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Response to PoindexterOglethorpe (Reply #1)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 11:46 AM

3. I think it's more of a willingness to listen to all viewpoints and possibly change course.

Conservatives only want to listen to views that support their current opinions. For them different views are a waste of time because they have been led to believe those views are inherently wrong/evil.

Liberals are more open to change, especially when presented with credible information. Conservatives are as resistant as possible to change, regardless of the facts (like climate change).

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Response to LonePirate (Reply #3)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 12:01 PM

5. I think this is most likely true. Conservatives don't like change where as liberals seem to show

more curiosity about new ideas. I also think, in general, that liberals are more fact based than conservatives.

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Response to LonePirate (Reply #3)

Thu Dec 8, 2016, 01:34 PM

13. I've had conservative college students tell me as much in my classes:

"Why do we have to talk about this? I already decided what I believe a long time ago, and nothing is going to change my mind."

And that's even when I'm including sources from their point of view.

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Response to PoindexterOglethorpe (Reply #1)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 06:28 PM

9. imagine that

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 11:42 AM

2. Lee Atwater knew this. Long ago.

"Need for cognition" is measured by assessing people's agreement with statements like, "I find satisfaction in deliberating hard and for long hours" or "thinking is not my idea of fun." A measurement of people's affinity for critical thinking, in short.

Jost reviewed 40 studies on differences in this need for cognition between liberals and conservatives. Of those, 25 showed a "significant, negative" association between need for cognition and right-wing orientation. In all but three of the others, there was a similar negative association but it wasn't statistically significant.

In other words, liberals were slightly more predisposed to think critically than conservatives. As Stefan Pfattheicher of Ulm University put it in an email to me, conservatives "are less reflective in information processing, especially when information is consistent with [their] own worldviews."

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 11:57 AM

4. There was another university study, sorry no link, that proved

self identified conservatives are not only more likely to believe false stories but become even more hardened in those beliefs when those stories are debunked.

I'll see if I can find the study--done during the Bush 43 years.

edit to add: Not the study itself but a Huff post article about it--may have link to the actual study.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dan-sweeney/theres-no-arguing-with-co_b_126805.html

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 12:10 PM

6. Exactly as I thought. Conservatives are gullible because they are stupid lazy fucks.

What a surprise.

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Response to lagomorph777 (Reply #6)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 06:30 PM

10. that pretty much sums it up

I've it myself - people who I KNOW are intelligent at work, they will forward to me the most ridiculous rightwing trash, stuff that could easily be disproved with a couple of clicks - heck, stuff you should KNOW is silly propaganda - it is very disturbing

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 01:32 PM

7. People gravitate to like people

People gravitate to the same people that they believe have the same beliefs.
A UCLA study had 50 people show up to a research study. As they showed up, they were handed blue and red hats at random. After awhile as they waited for the study to begin, they separated themselves into a blue corner and a red corner. Researchers were planted in each group just to mentally record the conversations. Each group thought that they were superior to the other group.

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 02:34 PM

8. This Is The Fox News Business Model

Slant everything right wing, docter videos, etc, while constantly branding yourself as fair and balanced. It worked so well now we have copycats like One America Nes.

Fox News has been here 20 years, a sucker is born every minute, and here we are, people believe millions voted lllegally in California and that Hillary ran a child sex ring out of a Pizzaria.

No Fox News No Orange Fraud, no millions consistently voting against their own self interest.

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Wed Dec 7, 2016, 09:47 PM

11. individuals who identified asmore conservative were more likely tobe duped by nonsense than liberals

Pfattheicher has done his own work into how conservatives and liberals process "bulls--t" -- in this case a highly technical term (yes, really) denoting statements that appear to be profound, but which are in fact meaningless.

In a small study earlier this year, Pfattheicher posed nonsensical statements like "hidden meaning transforms unparalleled abstract beauty" and "attention and intention are the mechanics of manifestation" -- to 196 supporters of various U.S. presidential candidates. He then asked them to rate how "profound" the statements were on a scale of 1 to 5, from "not at all" to "very profound."

While the study was not nationally representative, he found a significant correlation between support for Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio or Donald Trump and the favorable assessment of the meaningless statements. The relationship was the strongest for Cruz supporters in his sample. Conversely, he found no significant relationship between support for Democratic candidates and susceptibility to the nonsensical sentences.

Pfattheicher also found that individuals who identified as more conservative were more likely to be duped by nonsense than liberals.



[font size="+1"] ... Trump's base[/font]


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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Thu Dec 8, 2016, 01:32 PM

12. You should bold the last two lines of the excerpt: Conservatives NEVER fact check EVER

if it fits with their beliefs and/or comes from talk radio or Fox News.

My dad sometimes sends me those right wing viral emails, and it would take about five seconds to debunk, usually with just Snopes, a hardly lefty source.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #12)

Thu Dec 8, 2016, 01:39 PM

14. Regarding Snopes - most conservatives consider it to be a raging liberal site since

it doesn't agree with their biased misconceptions and the lies they have been told. I've been told many times that Snopes can't be trusted because it "pushes an agenda".

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Reply #14)

Thu Dec 8, 2016, 01:50 PM

15. Ironically, they seem to be fact-based conservatives to me

in one case they, they "fact-checked" a viral email sent by some vet, and checked the guys credentials but not the content of the email.

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