UBCO experts invite public to learn about the dangers of misinformation

Dangers of misinformation

The misinformation age is upon us and experts at UBC Okanagan are inviting the public to learn about the dangers of it.

According to a study from StatsCan, most Canadians say they have seen what they think is false and misleading information online related to COVID-19.

Only one-in-five Canadians say they investigate the strange information they encounter online, which sparks the question - how are the remaining four people reacting to the information they're seeing online and could these people unknowingly be spreading misinformation?

The Irving K. Barber Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences’ Department of Economics, Philosophy and Political Science is gearing up to present The Misinformation Age.

This event will feature speakers from areas of law, internet, psychology, journalism, history and science to discuss the role of misinformation in society including the COVID-19 pandemic, the recent American election and the tools used by authoritarian regimes to disseminate falsehoods.

Event organizer and associate professor of philosophy Dr. Dan Ryder says the event will give people the chance to learn about what’s driving the global surge in misinformation.

“To stave off the negative impacts of misinformation, we need to first understand it and then find a way to combat it while preserving free speech,” he explains. “It’s a complex topic, but the good news is that researchers from across disciplines have begun to make real progress in exploring the ‘why’ behind it. This is a battle that belongs to all of us, so I hope the community can join us next week to become a more effective part of it.”

This online event is free and open to the public. Pre-registration is required.

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