ERIC Number: EJ1086956
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Jan
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 42
The Continued Influence of Implied and Explicitly Stated Misinformation in News Reports
Rich, Patrick R.; Zaragoza, Maria S.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v42 n1 p62-74 Jan 2016
The piecemeal reporting of unfolding news events can lead to the reporting of mistaken information (or misinformation) about the cause of the newsworthy event, which later needs to be corrected. Studies of the "continued influence effect" have shown, however, that corrections are not entirely effective in reversing the effects of initial misinformation. Instead, participants continue to rely on the discredited misinformation when asked to draw inferences and make judgments about the news story. Most prior studies have employed misinformation that explicitly states the likely cause of an outcome. However, news stories do not always provide misinformation explicitly, but instead merely imply that something or someone might be the cause of an adverse outcome. Two experiments employing both direct and indirect measures of misinformation reliance were conducted to assess whether implied misinformation is more resistant to correction than explicitly stated misinformation. The results supported this prediction. Experiment 1 showed that corrections reduced misinformation reliance in both the explicit and implied conditions, but the correction was much less effective following implied misinformation. Experiment 2 showed that implied misinformation was more resistant to correction than explicit misinformation, even when the correction was paired with an alternative explanation. Finally, Experiment 3 showed that greater resistance to correction in the implied misinformation condition did not reflect greater disbelief in the correction. Potential reasons why implied misinformation is more difficult to correct than explicitly provided misinformation are discussed.
Descriptors: Experimental Psychology, News Reporting, Misconceptions, Error Correction, Resistance (Psychology), Barriers, Statistical Analysis, Multivariate Analysis, Undergraduate Students, Questionnaires, Memory
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A