[M|D]isinformation Reading List
First Draft uses cookies to distinguish you from other users of our website. They allow us to recognise users over multiple visits, and to collect basic data about your use of the website. Cookies help us provide you with a good experience when you browse our website and also allows us to improve our site. Check our cookie policy to read more. Cookie Policy.

This website is hosted in perpetuity by the Internet Archive.

[M|D]isinformation Reading List

A list of non-academic readings related to different aspects of the "fake news" debate, covering the impact of advertising, its role in the US election, the growing awareness of disinformation campaigns aimed at upcoming European elections, and some of the psychological theories that help explain why our brains can be so easily fooled.

[Last updated: February 5, 2017]

I put this post together as an accompaniment to some of the talks about misinformation I’ve been asked to give recently. It is not comprehensive by any stretch, but rather a list of the articles I reference in my talks. It also does not include the academic and theoretical literature that is so relevant to this debate. (If someone knows of one, let me know as I would love to link out to that. Otherwise, I’ll create a separate post that includes those readings).

History and Overviews
David Uberti, The Real History of Fake News, Columbia Journalism Review, December 15, 2016

Brooke Borel, Fact Checking Won’t Save Us From Fake News, FiveThirtyEight, January 4, 2017

Daniel Swislow,  The distributed denial of democracy: Coming together to address anti-democratic trolling and disinformation online, Medium, November 9, 2016

Claire Wardle, Timeline: Key Moments in the Fake News Debate, First Draft News, (Sept 30 – Dec 1, 2016)

Role of Advertising
Davey Alba, Meet the Ad Companies Ditching Breitbart and Fake News, Wired, December, 15, 2016

Jon Brotherhood, While We’re Going After Fake News, How About Ad Scams, Too?  AdWeek, December 28, 2016

Lucia Moses, Study: Mainstream sites have almost double the ad tech as fake news sites, Digiday, Jan 4, 2017

Adam Mosseri, News Feed FYI: Addressing Hoaxes and Fake News, Facebook Newsroom, December 15, 2016.

Sapna Maheshwari, Advertising’s Moral Struggle: Is Online Reach Worth the Hurt? New York Times, December 26, 2016

Charles Warner, Google Increases Regulation Of False Ads And Fake News, Forbes, January 25, 2016

Psychological Explanations and Other Research
Maria Konnikova, Trump’s Lies vs. Your Brain, Politico Magazine, January/February 2017
[This article summarizes a number of psychological theories and explanations so I have not listed them separately in this reading list]

On the Media, The Rise and Fall of Fake News: Interview with Craig Silverman, January 27, 2017

Brooke Donald, Stanford researchers find students have trouble judging the credibility of information online, Stanford News Center, November 22, 2016

Elia Powers, How to Fight Fake News and Misinformation? Research Helps Point the Way, MediaShift, December 2016.

Nausicaa Renner, Memes trump articles on Breitbart’s Facebook page, Columbia Journalism Review, January 30, 2017

Jonathan Stray,  Defense Against the Dark Arts: Networked Propaganda and Counter-Propaganda, Medium, February 27, 2017

In addition see this piece for useful explanation of key psychological explanations of how propaganda works.

Emily Bell, Facebook drains the fake news swamp with new, experimental partnerships, Columbia Journalism Review, December 15, 2016

Matt Burgess  Hive mind assemble! There is now a crowdsourcing campaign to solve the problem of fake news, Wired, November 25, 2016

Eli Pariser & many others, Design Solutions for Fake News, [November 2016 ongoing]

Craig Silverman, Facebook Must Either Innovate Or Admit Defeat At The Hands Of Fake News Hoaxsters, Buzzfeed News, August 30, 2016

Ben Smith, How Tech and Media can Fight Fake News, Columbia Journalism Review, November 17, 2016

Zeynep Tufekci Mark Zuckerberg is in Denial, New York Times, November 15, 2016

Fake News and the US Election
Hunt Allcott, and Matthew Gentzkow, Social Media and Fake News in the 2016 Election, Stanford University

Channel 4 News [VIDEO], Fake Online News from Macedonia, Who is Behind it? November 24, 2016

First Draft News, Collection of 9 Articles on ‘Fake News’, First Draft News, 2016

Craig Silverman et al., Hyperpartisan Facebook Pages Are Publishing False And Misleading Information At An Alarming Rate, Buzzfeed News, October 20, 2016

Craig Silverman, How Teens In The Balkans Are Duping Trump Supporters With Fake News, Buzzfeed News, November 3, 2016

Craig Silverman This Analysis Shows How Viral Fake Election News Stories Outperformed Real News On Facebook, Buzzfeed News, November 16, 2016

Samantha Subramanian, Inside the Macedonian Fake News Complex, Wired, February 15, 2017

Dan Tynan, How Facebook powers money machines for obscure political ‘news’ sites, The Guardian, August 24, 2016

Disinformation, Europe and Upcoming Elections
Laurence Alexander, Social Network Analysis Reveals Full Scale of Kremlin’s Twitter Bot Campaign, Global Voices, April 2, 2015

Ryan Broderick, Trump Supporters Online Are Pretending To Be French To Manipulate France’s Election, Buzzfeed News, January 24, 2017

Sebastien Dullien and Jeremy Shapiro, How to Avoid a Post-Truth World, European Council on Foreign Relations, 16th January, 2017

EU East StratCom Task Force, Means, Goals and Consequences of the Pro-Kremlin Disinformation Campaign, Italian Institute for International Political Studies (ISPI), January 19, 2017

Yevhen Fedchenko, Kremlin Propaganda: Soviet Active Measures by Other Means, StopFake.org, March 21, 2016

Julie Lenarz, Russia has made fake news into a weapon that threatens democracy in Europe, The Telegraph, January 26, 2017

Louise Lief, Disinformation with a Silicon Valley Ethos, Columbia Journalism Review, January 18, 2017

Christopher Paul & Miriam Matthews, The Russian ‘Firehose of Falsehood’ Propaganda Model: Why It Might Work and Options to Counter It, Rand Corporation, July 2016.

The Future
Nick Bilton, Fake News is About to Get Even Scarier Than You Ever Dreamed, Vanity Fair,  January 26, 2017

danah boyd, The Information War Has Begun, apophenia, January 27, 2017

Emma Grey Ellis, Fake Think Tanks Fuel Fake News—And the President’s Tweets, Wired, January 24, 2017

Margaret Sullivan, It’s time to retire the tainted term ‘fake news’, Washington Post, January 8, 2017

Ethan Zuckerman, Stop Saying ‘Fake News’ It’s Not Helping, EthanZuckerman.com, January 30, 2017

Global Case Studies

Chay F. Hofileña, Inside Martin Andanar’s man cave, Rappler, January 26, 2017

Jason Patikin, How To Use Facebook And Fake News To Get People To Murder Each Other, Buzzfeed News, January 15, 2017

Maria Ressa, Propaganda war: Weaponizing the internet, Rappler, October 3, 2016

Therese Reyes, At the center of the Philippines’ battle with fake news is a pop star with a legion of Duterte fans, Quartz, January 15, 2017


Leave a Reply