The Spread of Misinformation and Falsehoods
• Russia’s Falsehoods Linger: Of the Kremlin’s many unfounded claims, those accusing the United States of making secret bioweapons in Ukraine are the most enduring around the world.
• A Legal Remedy?: A new bill could make California the first state to punish doctors for spreading false information about Covid-19 vaccines and treatments.
• Global Threat: New research shows that nearly three-quarters of respondents across 19 countries with advanced economies are very concerned about false information online.
• Web of Lies: Researchers looked at thousands of spider news stories to study how sensationalized information spreads. Their findings could be broadly applicable.
Federal and state legislators have tried in recent years to support media literacy in public schools. Five states, including Colorado, passed language since early 2020 that required education departments to take steps such as providing literacy resources and revising learning standards, according to the nonprofit group Media Literacy Now. Many of the existing laws amount to legislative endorsements of the need for literacy education rather than actual mandates. Only one state, Illinois, requires that high school students be taught how to gain access to and analyze media messages.