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Thorson quoted in Scientific American article on fake news, elections

March 3, 2020

Scientific American

Stuart Thorson

Stuart Thorson


During the 2016 election cycle, certain Web sites spread false information across the Internet. But a new study suggests they did not have as much impact as some have feared. Emily Thorson, assistant professor of political science, says she is not surprised that these sites did not have a huge effect. A single piece of information rarely changes anyone’s opinion, "whether it’s true-or false," says Thorson, who was not involved in the study. "That’s a good thing." The idea that a handful of unreliable outlets were going to substantially alter views or behaviors "is pretty far-fetched, given what we know about the stability of people’s political attitudes," she says. Thorson was interviewed for the Scientific American article "'Fake News' Web Sites May Not Have a Major Effect on Elections." 03/03/20


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