如何最有效地打击阴谋论

如何最有效地打击阴谋论
当时间不确定时,人们会被阴谋论社区所吸引。
M.Moira / Shutterstock.com

In the era of social media, conspiracy theories feel more prominent and prevalent than ever before.在社交媒体时代,阴谋论比以往任何时候都更加突出和流行。 Most recently, the high level of uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, combined with people's desire to make sense of a new reality, spawned a range of new conspiracy theories最近,围绕COVID-XNUMX大流行的高度不确定性,再加上人们对新现实的理解,催生了一系列新的阴谋论 同时加强现有的。 These fuelled the spread of misinformation about the virus, giving succour to这些助长了有关该病毒的错误信息的传播,为 防面具组.

QAnon关注者有 被唐纳德·特朗普默许 –谁将阴谋论视为他们的救星。

在我最近的书中, 分裂的力量,我将解释政治家如何从最激进和最残酷的立场中受益。 They can capitalise on the claims made by conspiracy theorists, to antagonise certain groups, bolster their identity and, ultimately, convert them into loyal voters.他们可以利用阴谋理论家的主张,与某些团体对抗,增强其身份,最终将他们转变为忠诚的选民。

研究表明,人们会在时代到来时买进阴谋论 压力和不确定。 In these situations people tend to make less accurate judgements about the validity of the information they are given.在这些情况下,人们倾向于对所提供信息的有效性做出较不准确的判断。 But believing in conspiracy theories also makes people feel part of something bigger than themselves, and provides them with a tribe to belong to.但是,相信阴谋论也会使人们感到比自己更大的事情的一部分,并为他们提供属于的部落。

在我 ,我将讨论可以同时解决这两个问题的潜在解决方案。 In particular, I build on Finland's recent experience of combating the spread of fake news and conspiracy theories by teaching critical thinking in school.我特别借鉴芬兰最近通过在学校教授批判性思维来打击假新闻和阴谋理论传播的经验。

在他们年轻的时候就得到他们

Lots of governments fund specific agencies to fight for the truth and try and counter the spread of conspiracy theories.许多政府为特定机构提供资金,以争取真相,并试图制止阴谋理论的传播。 The US for example, has the以美国为例, 全球参与中心,它试图通过寻找社交媒体的来源并在某些情况下发布反消息来操纵社交媒体上的意见。 But the level of information and speed with which it can spread on social media – along with a president who peddles conspiracy theories – has made their mission difficult, to say the least.但是,可以在社交媒体上传播的信息水平和速度,以及兜售串谋理论的总统,至少可以说使他们的任务变得困难。

What's more, conspiracy theories thrive on distrust of the government.此外,阴谋论因对政府的不信任而兴旺。 As a consequence, these official agencies often struggle to contain the spread of fake news.结果,这些官方机构经常努力遏制虚假新闻的传播。


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芬兰拿了 截然不同的方法。 After seeing the damage done by the fake news spread in neighbouring Russia, the Finnish government set up a plan to teach critical thinking in secondary school in 2014. It integrated media literacy into the curriculum and got students to exercise their critical thinking when collecting information on a specific topic.在看到假新闻在邻国俄罗斯传播造成的损害之后,芬兰政府于XNUMX年制定了在中学教授批判性思维的计划。该计划将媒体素养融入课程中,让学生在收集有关信息时行使批判性思维。一个特定的主题。 The source is assessed, and so is the content.评估来源,内容也被评估。

Students are also trained to critically evaluate statistics and numbers.还训练了学生批判性地评估统计数字。 These can be particularly confusing or intimidating to critique – and we naturally tend to give them legitimacy.这些批评可能特别令人困惑或恐吓-我们自然倾向于赋予他们合法性。 But the Finnish experience proves that giving citizens the confidence to debunk conspiracy theories themselves is more effective than providing them with the right information.但是,芬兰的经验证明,让公民有信心自己去揭穿阴谋论比提供正确的信息更有效。

指出错误信息。指出错误信息。 泰勒·奥尔森/ Shutterstock

普世价值观的互补作用

But another challenge is looming – and critical thinking is not enough.但是另一个挑战迫在眉睫-批判性思维还不够。 Followers of conspiracy theories, whether they believe in QAnon or that the world is flat, are often drawn to the community element of conspiracy theories.密谋理论的追随者,无论他们相信QAnon还是相信世界是平坦的,常常被密谋理论的社区元素所吸引。 They feel like they belong to a select group, which makes them feel unique and special.他们觉得自己属于一个选定的群体,这使他们感到独特和特殊。 They believe they have access to exclusive and well-guarded knowledge, which makes them feel distinctive.他们相信自己可以获得专有且保护良好的知识,这使他们感到与众不同。

这些想法是 社会认同理论 in psychology research.在心理学研究中。 This is the idea that our perception of ourselves as individuals is driven by the groups we belong to and the identity that they have.这是一个想法,即我们对自己的个人看法是由我们所属的群体和他们的身份所驱动的。 A group of conspiracy theorists is attractive because it is seen as holding a superior truth against others – effectively,一群阴谋理论家很有吸引力,因为它们被视为拥有超越他人的优越真理-有效地, 知识高地.

Finnish authorities understood this.芬兰当局对此理解。 Their secondary school programme also focused on reminding pupils of the important universal values他们的中学课程还侧重于提醒学生重要的普遍价值观 芬兰社会坚持。 These include fairness, the rule of law, respect for others' differences, openness and freedom.其中包括公平,法治,尊重他人的差异,开放和自由。 Together, these are a powerful lens to exercise their critical thinking – students are called to make sense of information with these values in mind.总之,这些是锻炼批判性思维的有力镜头–要求学生牢记这些价值观来理解信息。

Ultimately, students are reminded of all the good things about being Finnish and that they already belong to group with a positive identity.最终,让学生们想到了成为芬兰人的所有美好事物,他们已经属于一个具有积极性的群体。 This throws the identity benefits of believing in conspiracy theories into question.这使人们相信相信阴谋论的身份利益。 Plus, their Finnish identity becomes more salient as they question and identify fake news.另外,当他们质疑并识别假新闻时,他们的芬兰身份变得更加突出。 Critical thinking and countering misinformation is what makes them part of a group they can be proud of.批判性思维和对付错误信息的原因使他们成为了他们引以为傲的一群人的一部分。

Of course, this is difficult to measure but the evidence so far suggests Finland's approach is working.当然,这很难衡量,但是迄今为止的证据表明芬兰的方法正在奏效。 A一种 2019年研究发现 that Finnish pupils are much better at identifying fake news than their US counterparts.芬兰的学生比美国的学生更能识别假新闻。 But the real benefits will take years to study, not least because Finland's programme only really ramped up in the last couple of years.但是要想真正获得收益,将需要花费数年的时间研究,尤其是因为芬兰的计划仅在最近几年才真正扩大。

The spread of conspiracy theories will not be stopped by simply giving younger generations the right training to engage in fact-checking, or collect evidence-based information.仅通过对年轻一代进行正确的事实核查或收集循证信息的正确培训,就不会阻止阴谋理论的传播。 The reality of conspiracy theory groups is that they represent fragmented parts of our society – their very existence is made possible by social exclusion.阴谋理论团体的现实是,他们代表了我们社会中分散的部分–社会排斥使他们的存在成为可能。 So we must teach critical thinking alongside ensuring people feel part of a broader community.因此,我们必须在教授批判性思维的同时,确保人们感到自己成为更广泛社区的一部分。谈话

关于作者

吉顿学院组织理论高级讲师,社会学研究员Thomas Roulet, 贾吉商学院

本文重新发表 谈话 根据知识共享许可。 阅读 原创文章.

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