Fake news ‘casts wide net but has little effect’

A new US study has found that while so-called “fake news” may have had a far reach during the country’s 2016 presidential election, but that its impact was relatively shallow.

The study,  published on Wednesday as a collaboration between Princeton, Dartmouth and the University of Exeter, also maintains that some 60 percent of visits to “fake news” sites came from a core group of ultra-conservative media consumers and were not widely seen by a vast swath of the electorate.

As the researchers point out, although the “new form of political misinformation features prominently in journalistic accounts” of the election, “little is known scientifically about the consumption of fake news, including who read it.”

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