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Wed Sep 28, 2022, 11:43 AM

Didn't Read The Article Before Commenting? Science Says It Really Shows

Something on my mind with social media of late. There's currently an article where . . . most people just didn't read it. Like, at all. So I was curious and wondered if there were any studies done about how much people on social media actually are reading and processing the information available.

Of course there was a study.

A little bit of knowledge can go straight to your head, and not in a good way. New research has found that those who only read snippets of their Facebook newsfeed often think they know more than they actually do.

By glancing through article previews, instead of reading the full piece, many users overestimate their understanding of an issue, and this is especially true for those whose knowledge is guided by strong emotions - and, therefore, strong opinions.

"Because most social media users only have a passing engagement with posted news, exposure to political information on social media may simply create the illusion of political learning," write the researchers at the York College of Pennsylvania . . .

Unsurprisingly, those who read the full article answered the most questions correctly, while those who read the preview scored only one more correct answer than those who were given no information at all. Additionally, the findings suggest that people who read only the previews were far too confident in their knowledge. What's more, those participants whose cognitive style is more guided by emotion, tend to be more certain of their rightness.



https://www.sciencealert.com/people-who-read-the-facebook-newsfeed-think-they-know-more-than-they-actually-do

Just something to keep in mind when scrolling along (particularly on Twitter). It's how misinformation spreads. Reading a summary or opinionated assertion about information isn't the same thing as real factual information.

22 replies, 1429 views

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Arrow 22 replies Author Time Post
Reply Didn't Read The Article Before Commenting? Science Says It Really Shows (Original post)
Sympthsical Sep 28 OP
Gaugamela Sep 28 #1
Sympthsical Sep 28 #6
GusBob Sep 28 #12
Ms. Toad Sep 28 #15
OneGrassRoot Sep 29 #18
Tomconroy Sep 28 #2
Sympthsical Sep 28 #4
HAB911 Sep 28 #3
Sympthsical Sep 28 #5
H2O Man Sep 28 #7
Behind the Aegis Sep 28 #13
H2O Man Sep 28 #14
Behind the Aegis Sep 28 #16
H2O Man Sep 29 #22
lame54 Sep 28 #8
Hortensis Sep 28 #9
msongs Sep 28 #10
Wounded Bear Sep 28 #11
OneGrassRoot Sep 29 #21
betsuni Sep 29 #17
Sympthsical Sep 29 #19
betsuni Sep 29 #20

Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:08 PM

1. To be honest, I see many comments here on DU that make it apparent

the poster didnít even read the body of the OP, let alone watch a video or click through to an article. They just respond to the OP subject line. I call it drive-by posting.

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Response to Gaugamela (Reply #1)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:33 PM

6. A personal favorite

Anywhere on social media - it's ubiquitous - is when you read a comment and realize someone didn't make it past the second or third sentence.

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Response to Gaugamela (Reply #1)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 01:53 PM

12. Yep

Happens all the time. One will ask a question that is clearly answered in the body of the story

Or, and this kills me, make a statement of fact that is directly proven untrue in the body of the story

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Response to Gaugamela (Reply #1)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 03:08 PM

15. Yup. Drives me nuts.

Especially when the content in the OP is extremely misleading (often because the OP found the article elsewhere, posted it without fact-checking), and when corrected rationalizes the mis-information rather than acknowledging the mistake - or accuses the person correcting them of supporting Republicans.

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #15)

Thu Sep 29, 2022, 05:49 AM

18. That and...

the many replies who obviously donít read other replies. I always read comments and usually glean much more information there.

We see how amplification of misinformation happens right here on DU and this is a fairly more informed community than most.

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:17 PM

2. Is it too late to disinvent the internet?

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Response to Tomconroy (Reply #2)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:30 PM

4. We need to teach internet and finance in high school

One of the first classes I took when returning to school was a research course. How academic research is done has changed a lot over the past twenty years, and I needed a good primer. Of course the big stuff was covered. Checking sources. How to laterally read. Information absorption (i.e. Did you actually read it, or did you scan the first few sentences and assumed you got it?).

Imagine if people were taught to use the internet in this way rather than just being released into the cyber wilds. "Behold this land of fantasy where whatever you want to be true can be!"

I read pretty much everything before I make a comment about it. The full article is like the bare minimum. Usually, if it's a heated subject, I'll scan across to other sources, check who's doing the reporting, what kind of bias or credibility we're dealing with, etc. Correction should be a perpetually self-critical act rather than a gauntlet thrown from perceived opposition.

"I saw it on Twitter!" is just teeth grinding. Just. Everyday with this shit. "No, wrong. Not true. Did you read it? Literally the opposite of what was written." If I weren't a naturally laid back, unbothered person, I'm pretty sure I would've stroked out years ago.

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:29 PM

3. Our teachers were always testing us this way

broke me of the habit of not reading to the end. 10 instructions would tell you what to do, number 10 would say ignore instruction 1-9, and put down your pencil. too funny

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Response to HAB911 (Reply #3)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:31 PM

5. I had a teacher in 4th grade who did that

Wrote a long list of instructions on the board. We did each one as she wrote them. Then got to the end.

Felt like an idiot. "I stood up and spun around just like you wrote, and it was all for nothing!"

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:36 PM

7. Just like the printing press.

Some people read the great works, others comic books.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #7)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 01:57 PM

13. Some read both.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #13)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 03:03 PM

14. True.

I count myself among them. My late brother had a huge comic collection, from the 1950s through the flood of 2004, that destroyed them & his home.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #14)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 11:14 PM

16. So sorry to hear that.

Huge loss on both accounts. Some comics from the 50's could buy several homes depending on the title.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #16)

Thu Sep 29, 2022, 01:02 PM

22. If I remember correctly,

never a sure thing at my age, he had a mint copy of the original Tarzan comic, which I think was published by Dell. He had thousands of them, kept in perfect order on a large shelf. Likewise, in the same room, he had boxing magazines going back to the days of Joe Louis, all in perfect condition and order. He didn't live in the flood plain, but rivers being curious things while flooding, ended up with about six feet of water in his home.

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:38 PM

8. Very simple explanation for that...

If you read the article before posting you'll be comment #72 and your informed insight wil get buried and read by a few

Skip the article you'll be in the top 10 where more people will see your uninformed dribble

Example: I didn't read this article and I'm post #8. I hope didn't miss anything important

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 12:39 PM

9. :) And an old study says 59% of links shared on social media weren't

clicked on before sharing. But we know this one was.

Agree it's often pretty obvious when posters haven't either, that excessive confidence in what they know they know, typically fitting on their title line.

Headline: Poliovirus Found in Waste Water Near New York City"
Post: "Republicans all want to kill children!"

That said, I admit I've done it. For me normally knee-jerk aggravation from what I assume is some agitprop returned for another round of hits. ("Tell a lie often enough..." )

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 01:37 PM

10. what % of links on DU lead to login required wasting huge amts of time. discourages reading nt

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Wed Sep 28, 2022, 01:41 PM

11. So, only reading headlines and summaries increase the Dunning-Krueger effect...

I kind of gathered that over the past few years.


Been guilty of it a few times, too.

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Response to Wounded Bear (Reply #11)

Thu Sep 29, 2022, 06:23 AM

21. That's a great point...

I didn't consider how many DO consider themselves informed by simply skimming headlines and reading 140 character summaries.

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Response to Sympthsical (Original post)

Thu Sep 29, 2022, 05:26 AM

17. Neoliberal insult: Implying Democrats are same as Republicans, against regulated capitalism, wrong.

We know what neoliberal means and Democrats are not neoliberals. As if reading yet another article about neoliberalism is going to convince us that both sides are the same.

What this OP is about:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/100217202212

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Response to betsuni (Reply #17)

Thu Sep 29, 2022, 05:54 AM

19. My OP has absolutely zero to do with that thread or article

Literally zero, lol.

I can't even makes sense of how A to B was arrived at in the comparison. Just . . whut?

Well, I suppose it's an improvement over haranguing grieving people. Always good to have a new project, I guess?

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Response to Sympthsical (Reply #19)

Thu Sep 29, 2022, 06:12 AM

20. LOL.

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