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RubyConf 2018 Psychology of Fake News

045d790f605ea8d482380c5075d802d5?s=47 Cecy C.
November 13, 2018

RubyConf 2018 Psychology of Fake News

Fake news spread six times faster in social media than true stories. As technologists, our industry has built the tools that enable the spread of disinformation across social, the web, and beyond. But fake news is nothing new, it has been a part of each advancement in the technology that powers the spread of information, from the printing press to blogging. What makes fake news so appealing? Is it a tech problem or a human problem? In this talk, I will explain the psychology that makes fake news appealing to our brain, and what technology can learn about this psychology to build better tools.

045d790f605ea8d482380c5075d802d5?s=128

Cecy C.

November 13, 2018
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Transcript

  1. PSYCHOLOGY OF FAKE NEWS [@cecycorrea // RubyConf // 2018] AND

    WHAT TECH CAN DO ABOUT IT
  2. ORSON WELLES, WAR OF THE WORLDS, 1938

  3. None
  4. THAT WAS THEN...

  5. THIS IS NOW.

  6. None
  7. FUTUREOFFAKENEWS.COM

  8. [ethics checkpoint]

  9. THIS CREATES A SOCIETY WHERE NO ONE CAN BELIEVE ANYTHING.

  10. WELCOME TO THE POST-TRUTH WORLD

  11. WHY DO PEOPLE BELIEVE FAKE NEWS?

  12. THE PSYCHOLOGY BEHIND FAKE NEWS

  13. HOW BELIEFS ARE FORMED HOW WE EXPERIENCE KNOWLEDGE

  14. THINKING FAST AND SLOW, DANIEL KAHNEMAN HOW BELIEFS ARE FORMED

  15. SYSTEM 1 fast, automatic, intuitive (FAST)

  16. SYSTEM 1 fast, automatic, intuitive (FAST)

  17. SYSTEM 2 Analytical (SLOW)

  18. WE USE SLOW MIND (SYSTEM 2) TO FORM BELIEFS, OUR

    ACTIONS ON THOSE BELIEFS ARE INSTINCTUAL
  19. FAKE NEWS SITES COVERING THE SAME ‘STORY’ SOURCE: BUZZFEED

  20. YELLOW JOURNALISM EST. 1890s

  21. SENSATIONALISTIC HEADLINES WORK BECAUSE THEY APPEAL TO OUR FEELINGS

  22. WHERE DO FEELINGS FIT WITH BELIEFS AND KNOWLEDGE?

  23. “WHEN FACED WITH A DIFFICULT QUESTION, WE ANSWER AN EASIER

    ONE INSTEAD”
  24. HOW WE ANSWER QUESTIONS WITH FEELINGS “How should financial advisors

    who prey on the elderly be punished?” “How much anger do I feel when I think of financial predators?”
  25. WE CAN OFTEN CONFUSE FEELINGS FOR KNOWLEDGE

  26. KNOWLEDGE THE KNOWLEDGE ILLUSION

  27. EXERCISE: DRAW A BIKE

  28. KNOWLEDGE IS SHALLOW “BY DESIGN”

  29. OUR BRAINS COULD NOT FUNCTION IF WE WERE AWARE OF

    HOW MUCH WE DON’T KNOW
  30. THE KNOWLEDGE ILLUSION THE KNOWLEDGE ILLUSION “...strong feelings about issues

    do not emerge from deep understanding... but it deepens as more people believe this together”
  31. BELIEVING (FEELING) TOGETHER

  32. FAKE NEWS SPREAD SOURCE: THE ATLANTIC

  33. “It seems to be pretty clear that false information outperforms

    true information,” said Soroush Vosoughi, a data scientist at MIT who has studied fake news since 2013 and who led this study. “And that is not just because of bots. It might have something to do with human nature.”
  34. None
  35. NOT TRUE

  36. “The supposed panic was to tiny as to be immeasurable”

  37. “The supposed panic was to tiny as to be immeasurable”

    “As the show receded in time and became more infamous, more and more people claimed to have heard it.”
  38. FAKE NEWS STORIES ELICIT A STRONG EMOTIONAL RESPONSE

  39. CAN WE DISPROVE FAKE NEWS?

  40. EXERCISE: DRAW A BIKE EXPLAIN POLICY

  41. GREAT! LET’S DO THAT!

  42. TURNS OUT PEOPLE DON’T LIKE FEELING DUMB

  43. None
  44. “For some of our participants, checking out the other bubble

    only confirmed their commitment to staying inside their own.”
  45. “A GOOD LEADER MUST BE ABLE TO HELP PEOPLE REALIZE

    THEIR IGNORANCE WITHOUT MAKING THEM FEEL STUPID”
  46. THIS IS WHERE TECH COMES IN!

  47. EDUCATION

  48. EDUCATION DESIGN

  49. EDUCATION DESIGN ENGINEERING

  50. EDUCATION

  51. “...if we have STEM education without the humanities, or without

    ethics, or without understanding human behaviour, then we are intentionally building the next generation of technologists who have not even the framework or the education or vocabulary to think about the relationship of STEM to society or humans or life... SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
  52. ...understand how code intersects with human behaviour, privacy, safety, vulnerability,

    equality.”
  53. TEACHING OTHERS ABOUT COMPUTER SAFETY

  54. None
  55. DESIGN FOR A POST-TRUTH WORLD [@marisamorby @AJDavis_]

  56. NATIVE ADS

  57. None
  58. A POST-TRUTH WORLD NEEDS MORE HONEST DESIGN

  59. ENGINEERING

  60. FUTUREOFFAKENEWS.COM

  61. SOURCE: CNN

  62. SOURCE: @arsduo

  63. TECH + HUMAN

  64. None
  65. None
  66. None
  67. None
  68. None
  69. None
  70. “You can’t tell your advertisers that you can target users

    down to the tiniest pixel but then throw your hands up before the politicians and say your machines can’t figure out if bad actors are using your platform.” —Jessica Powell
  71. PSYCHOLOGY ETHICS EDUCATION DESIGN ENGINEERING SOLUTION

  72. None