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India’s Top Source of Social Media Misinformation About Covid-19: Study

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India produced the largest amount of social media misinformation about Covid-19 due to the country’s higher internet penetration rate, increasing social media consumption and lack of internet literacy among users, according to a new study.

The study “Prevalence and source analysis of Covid-19 misinformation in 138 countries” was published in the journal “International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions” by Sage.

Also read: Biden: Social media platforms “kill people” with misinformation

The study analyzed 9,657 misinformation from 138 countries. They were fact checked by 94 organizations to understand the prevalence and sources of misinformation in different countries.

“Of all countries, India (18.07 percent) produced the largest amount of misinformation on social media, perhaps thanks to the country’s higher internet penetration rate, increasing social media consumption and poor internet literacy of users,” it says the study.

The results also showed that India (15.94 percent), the United States (9.74 percent), Brazil (8.57 percent) and Spain (8.03 percent) are the four countries most affected by misinformation. Based on the results, according to the study, it is suspected that the prevalence of Covid-19 misinformation may have a positive relationship with the pandemic situation.

Also read: AI is the key to detecting fake news

“Social media (84.94 percent) produces the largest amount of misinformation, and the internet (90.5 percent) as a whole is responsible for most of the Covid-19 misinformation. In addition, Facebook alone produces 66.87 percent of the misinformation on all social media platforms, ”it says.

The World Health Organization had previously warned that false information about Covid-19 was spreading and putting people at risk. WHO had asked people to check everything they hear with trusted sources.

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