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  1. Epistemic vice predicts acceptance of Covid-19 misinformation.Marco Meyer, Mark Alfano & Boudewijn De Bruin - manuscript
    Why are mistaken beliefs about Covid-19 so prevalent? Political identity, education and other demographic variables explain only a part of individual differences in the susceptibility to Covid-19 misinformation. This paper focuses on another explanation: epistemic vice. Epistemic vices are character traits that interfere with acquiring, maintaining, and transmitting knowledge. If the basic assumption of vice epistemology is right, then people with epistemic vices such as indifference to the truth or rigidity in their belief structures will tend to be more susceptible (...)
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  2. Against Publishing Without Belief: Fake News, Misinformation, and Perverse Publishing Incentives.Rima Basu - forthcoming - In Sandy Goldberg & Mark Walker (eds.), Attitude in Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
    The problem of fake news and the spread of misinformation has garnered a lot of attention in recent years. The incentives and norms that give rise to the problem, however, are not unique to journalism. Insofar as academics and journalists are working towards the same goal, i.e., publication, they are both under pressures that pervert. This chapter has two aims. First, to integrate conversations in philosophy of science, epistemology, and metaphilosophy to draw out the publishing incentives that promote analogous problems (...)
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  3. Beyond belief: On disinformation and manipulation.Keith Raymond Harris - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-21.
    Existing analyses of disinformation tend to embrace the view that disinformation is intended or otherwise functions to mislead its audience, that is, to produce false beliefs. I argue that this view is doubly mistaken. First, while paradigmatic disinformation campaigns aim to produce false beliefs in an audience, disinformation may in some cases be intended only to prevent its audience from forming true beliefs. Second, purveyors of disinformation need not intend to have any effect at all on their audience’s beliefs, aiming (...)
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  4. Misinformation and disagreement.Ritsaart Willem Peter Reimann & Mark Alfano - forthcoming - In Maria Baghramian, Adam Carter & R. Rowland (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Disagreement. Routledge.
    This chapter addresses the relationship between misinformation and disagreement. We begin by arguing that one traditional bogeyman in this domain, ideological polarization, does not account for the many problems that have been documented. Instead, affective polarization seems to be the root cause of most of these problems. We then discuss the relationships between moral outrage, misinformation, and affective polarization. We next turn to the political implications of affective polarization and conclude by discussing some potential solutions to the problems that arise (...)
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  5. AI or Your Lying Eyes: Some Shortcomings of Artificially Intelligent Deepfake Detectors.Keith Raymond Harris - 2024 - Philosophy and Technology 37 (7):1-19.
    Deepfakes pose a multi-faceted threat to the acquisition of knowledge. It is widely hoped that technological solutions—in the form of artificially intelligent systems for detecting deepfakes—will help to address this threat. I argue that the prospects for purely technological solutions to the problem of deepfakes are dim. Especially given the evolving nature of the threat, technological solutions cannot be expected to prevent deception at the hands of deepfakes, or to preserve the authority of video footage. Moreover, the success of such (...)
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  6. Misinformation, Content Moderation, and Epistemology: Protecting Knowledge.Keith Raymond Harris - 2024 - Routledge.
    This book argues that misinformation poses a multi-faceted threat to knowledge, while arguing that some forms of content moderation risk exacerbating these threats. It proposes alternative forms of content moderation that aim to address this complexity while enhancing human epistemic agency. The proliferation of fake news, false conspiracy theories, and other forms of misinformation on the internet and especially social media is widely recognized as a threat to individual knowledge and, consequently, to collective deliberation and democracy itself. This book argues (...)
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  7. Conspiracy theories, epistemic self-identity, and epistemic territory.Daniel Munro - 2024 - Synthese 203 (4):1-28.
    This paper seeks to carve out a distinctive category of conspiracy theorist, and to explore the process of becoming a conspiracy theorist of this sort. Those on whom I focus claim their beliefs trace back to simply trusting their senses and experiences in a commonsensical way, citing what they take to be authoritative firsthand evidence or observations. Certain flat Earthers, anti-vaxxers, and UFO conspiracy theorists, for example, describe their beliefs and evidence this way. I first distinguish these conspiracy theorists by (...)
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  8. In Defense of (Some) Online Echo Chambers.Douglas R. Campbell - 2023 - Ethics and Information Technology 25 (3):1-11.
    In this article, I argue that online echo chambers are in some cases and in some respects good. I do not attempt to refute arguments that they are harmful, but I argue that they are sometimes beneficial. In the first section, I argue that it is sometimes good to be insulated from views with which one disagrees. In the second section, I argue that the software-design principles that give rise to online echo chambers have a lot to recommend them. Further, (...)
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  9. Capturing the conspiracist’s imagination.Daniel Munro - 2023 - Philosophical Studies 180 (12):3353-3381.
    Some incredibly far-fetched conspiracy theories circulate online these days. For most of us, clear evidence would be required before we’d believe these extraordinary theories. Yet, conspiracists often cite evidence that seems transparently very weak. This is puzzling, since conspiracists often aren’t irrational people who are incapable of rationally processing evidence. I argue that existing accounts of conspiracist belief formation don’t fully address this puzzle. Then, drawing on both philosophical and empirical considerations, I propose a new explanation that appeals to the (...)
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  10. Advancing the debate on the consequences of misinformation: clarifying why it’s not (just) about false beliefs.Maarten van Doorn - 2023 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 1.
    The debate on whether and why misinformation is bad primarily focuses on the spread of false beliefs as its main harm. From the assumption that misinformation primarily causes harm through the spread of false beliefs as a starting point, it has been contended that the problem of misinformation has been exaggerated. Its tendency to generate false beliefs appears to be limited. However, the near-exclusive focus on whether or not misinformation dupes people with false beliefs neglects other epistemic harms associated with (...)
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  11. Machine Learning, Misinformation, and Citizen Science.Adrian K. Yee - 2023 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 13 (56):1-24.
    Current methods of operationalizing concepts of misinformation in machine learning are often problematic given idiosyncrasies in their success conditions compared to other models employed in the natural and social sciences. The intrinsic value-ladenness of misinformation and the dynamic relationship between citizens' and social scientists' concepts of misinformation jointly suggest that both the construct legitimacy and the construct validity of these models needs to be assessed via more democratic criteria than has previously been recognized.
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  12. Inconvenient Truth and Inductive Risk in Covid-19 Science.Eli I. Lichtenstein - 2022 - Philosophy of Medicine 3 (1):1-25.
    To clarify the proper role of values in science, focusing on controversial expert responses to Covid-19, this article examines the status of (in)convenient hypotheses. Polarizing cases like health experts downplaying mask efficacy to save resources for healthcare workers, or scientists dismissing “accidental lab leak” hypotheses in view of potential xenophobia, plausibly involve modifying evidential standards for (in)convenient claims. Societies could accept that scientists handle (in)convenient claims just like nonscientists, and give experts less political power. Or societies could hold scientists to (...)
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  13. Wrong on the Internet: Why some common prescriptions for addressing the spread of misinformation online don’t work.Isaac Record & Boaz Miller - 2022 - Communique 105:22-27.
    Leading prescriptions for addressing the spread of fake news, misinformation, and other forms of epistemically toxic content online target either the platform or platform users as a single site for intervention. Neither approach attends to the intense feedback between people, posts, and platforms. Leading prescriptions boil down to the suggestion that we make social media more like traditional media, whether by making platforms take active roles as gatekeepers, or by exhorting individuals to behave more like media professionals. Both approaches are (...)
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  14. Everybody lies: deception levels in various domains of life.Kristina Šekrst - 2022 - Biosemiotics (2).
    The goal of this paper is to establish a hierarchical level of deception which does not apply only to humans and non-human animals, but also to the rest of the living world, including plants. We will follow the hierarchical categorization of deception, set forth by Mitchell (1986), in which the first level of deception starts with mimicry, while the last level of deception includes learning and intentionality, usually attributed to primates. We will show how such a hierarchy can be attributed (...)
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  15. Misinformation and Intentional Deception: A Novel Account of Fake News.Michel Croce & Tommaso Piazza - 2021 - In Maria Silvia Vaccarezza & Nancy Snow (eds.), Virtues, Democracy, and Online Media: Ethical and Epistemic Issues. Routledge.
    This chapter introduces a novel account of fake news and explains how it differs from other definitions on the market. The account locates the fakeness of an alleged news report in two main aspects related to its production, namely that its creators do not think to have sufficient evidence in favor of what they divulge and they fail to display the appropriate attitude towards the truth of the information they share. A key feature of our analysis is that it does (...)
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  16. Online Misinformation and “Phantom Patterns”: Epistemic Exploitation in the Era of Big Data.Megan Fritts & Frank Cabrera - 2021 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 60 (1):57-87.
    In this paper, we examine how the availability of massive quantities of data i.e., the “Big Data” phenomenon, contributes to the creation, spread, and harms of online misinformation. Specifically, we argue that a factor in the problem of online misinformation is the evolved human instinct to recognize patterns. While the pattern-recognition instinct is a crucial evolutionary adaptation, we argue that in the age of Big Data, these capacities have, unfortunately, rendered us vulnerable. Given the ways in which online media outlets (...)
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  17. Sharing (mis) information on social networking sites. An exploration of the norms for distributing content authored by others.Lavinia Marin - 2021 - Ethics and Information Technology 23 (3):363-372.
    This article explores the norms that govern regular users’ acts of sharing content on social networking sites. Many debates on how to counteract misinformation on Social Networking Sites focus on the epistemic norms of testimony, implicitly assuming that the users’ acts of sharing should fall under the same norms as those for posting original content. I challenge this assumption by proposing a non-epistemic interpretation of (mis) information sharing on social networking sites which I construe as infrastructures for forms of life (...)
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  18. Three contextual dimensions of information on social media: lessons learned from the COVID-19 infodemic.Lavinia Marin - 2021 - Ethics and Information Technology 23:79–86.
    The COVID-19 pandemic has been accompanied on social media by an explosion of information disorders such as inaccurate, misleading and irrelevant information. Countermeasures adopted thus far to curb these informational disorders have had limited success because these did not account for the diversity of informational contexts on social media, focusing instead almost exclusively on curating the factual content of user’s posts. However, content-focused measures do not address the primary causes of the infodemic itself, namely the user’s need to post content (...)
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  19. Misinformation and the Limits of Individual Responsibility.Boyd Millar - 2021 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 10 (12):8-21.
    The issue of how best to combat the negative impacts of misinformation distributed via social media hangs on the following question: are there methods that most individuals can reasonably be expected to employ that would largely protect them from the negative impact that encountering misinformation on social media would otherwise have on their beliefs? If the answer is “yes,” then presumably individuals bear significant responsibility for those negative impacts; and, further, presumably there are feasible educational remedies for the problem of (...)
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  20. Consequences of a Functional Account of Information.Stephen Francis Mann - 2020 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 11 (3):1-19.
    This paper aims to establish several interconnected points. First, a particular interpretation of the mathematical definition of information, known as the causal interpretation, is supported largely by misunderstandings of the engineering context from which it was taken. A better interpretation, which makes the definition and quantification of information relative to the function of its user, is outlined. The first half of the paper is given over to introducing communication theory and its competing interpretations. The second half explores three consequences of (...)
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  21. Bilgi Kirliliği ve Bireysel Sorumluluk: Salgın Deneyimimiz.Alper Yavuz - 2020 - MSGSÜ Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi 2 (22):203-217.
    Özet: Bilgi kirliliği eski bir sorun olsa da sosyal medya ve Internet tabanlı mesajlaşma uygulamalarının yaygınlaşmasıyla daha sık gündeme gelmeye başladı. Salgın hastalık gibi kriz dönemlerinde kirli bilginin etkinliğinin tehlikeli olabilecek boyutta arttığı görüldü. Bu yazıda bilgi kirliliği sorununu felsefi açıdan inceleyeceğim. Bilgi kirliliğinin ne olduğu sorusunu tartıştıktan sonra bilgi kirliliğinin üç türü arasındaki ayrımları ele alacağım. Son olarak bilgi kaynağı ve bilgi aktarıcısı olarak bir öznenin sorumluluklarının neler olduğu konusunu inceleyeceğim. Tartışmanın pratik sonuçlarını salgın hastalık konusuyla bağlantılı örnekler seçerek (...)
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  22. Deception: a functional account.Marc Artiga & Cédric Paternotte - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (3):579-600.
    Deception has recently received a significant amount of attention. One of main reasons is that it lies at the intersection of various areas of research, such as the evolution of cooperation, animal communication, ethics or epistemology. This essay focuses on the biological approach to deception and argues that standard definitions put forward by most biologists and philosophers are inadequate. We provide a functional account of deception which solves the problems of extant accounts in virtue of two characteristics: deceptive states have (...)
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  23. Propaganda, Misinformation, and the Epistemic Value of Democracy.Étienne Brown - 2018 - Critical Review: A Journal of Politics and Society 30 (3-4):194-218.
    If citizens are to make enlightened collective decisions, they need to rely on true factual beliefs, but misinformation impairs their ability to do so. Although some cases of misinformation are deliberate and amount to propaganda, cases of inadvertent misinformation are just as problematic in affecting the beliefs and behavior of democratic citizens. A review of empirical evidence suggests that this is a serious problem that cannot entirely be corrected by means of deliberation.
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  24. Deconstructing climate misinformation to identify reasoning errors.John Cook, Dave Kinkead & Peter Ellerton - 2018 - Environmental Research Letters 3.
    Misinformation can have significant societal consequences. For example, misinformation about climate change has confused the public and stalled support for mitigation policies. When people lack the expertise and skill to evaluate the science behind a claim, they typically rely on heuristics such as substituting judgment about something complex (i.e. climate science) with judgment about something simple (i.e. the character of people who speak about climate science) and are therefore vulnerable to misleading information. Inoculation theory offers one approach to effectively neutralize (...)
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  25. Propositional Content in Signalling Systems.Jonathan Birch - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 171 (3):493-512.
    Skyrms, building on the work of Dretske, has recently developed a novel information-theoretic account of propositional content in simple signalling systems. Information-theoretic accounts of content traditionally struggle to accommodate the possibility of misrepresentation, and I show that Skyrms’s account is no exception. I proceed to argue, however, that a modified version of Skyrms’s account can overcome this problem. On my proposed account, the propositional content of a signal is determined not by the information that it actually carries, but by the (...)
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  26. Firefly Femmes Fatales: A Case Study in the Semiotics of Deception.Charbel N. El-Hani, João Queiroz & Frederik Stjernfelt - 2010 - Biosemiotics 3 (1):33-55.
    Mimicry and deception are two important issues in studies about animal communication. The reliability of animal signs and the problem of the benefits of deceiving in sign exchanges are interesting topics in the evolution of communication. In this paper, we intend to contribute to an understanding of deception by studying the case of aggressive signal mimicry in fireflies, investigated by James Lloyd. Firefly femmes fatales are specialized in mimicking the mating signals of other species of fireflies with the purpose of (...)
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