Fake news has been the buzzword for quite some time now, and for good reason too. Pandemics, throughout history, seem to be fertile grounds for the breeding of fake news. And with the internet at its disposal, we have a new ‘genetically enhanced’ variant of this digital virus threatening the existence of our civilisation.
But if you are tired of the constant volley of conspiracy theories and suspicious articles that your friends and family send you, and are hoping against hope that, at some point, they’d realise that they have to vet the information they pass on, then here’s something that might interest you: https://www.getbadnews.com/#intro
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Bad News, the video game, was produced by the Dutch media platform “DROG” in collaboration with University of Cambridge scientists. It was designed to be the “fake news vaccine”. This browser-based game lets you take on the mantel of a fake news producer who has to take a series of actions to increase your following while maintaining your credibility on the virtual platform. You have to choose between options that are presented to you and your virtual followers respond to the actions you take. Your objective is to build your news empire.
The actions that you take and the subsequent reactions the virtual people in the game have to them are designed to get you to understand how misinformation and tactics employed by fake news outlets work in the real world. The underlying psychological concept is called inoculation theory – exposure to such tactics is thought to create resistance or psychological immunity to fake news.
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So what are you waiting for? Go give this game a try, pass the link on to all your acquaintances and maybe, just maybe, there will be a reduction in the numbers of bogus articles/videos/posts that get throw at you.
Here’s the link again: https://www.getbadnews.com/#intro
P.S. let’s make this a competition. Share your high score in comments! 😉