Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: A new study has revealed that official twitter accounts can help in putting an end to rumours.
The research claims that tweets from “official accounts” like emergency responders, government agencies or media companies can can bring down the pace of rumours on Twitter and correct misinformation.
The researchers documented the spread of two online rumors that initially spiked on Twitter, alleged police raids in a Muslim neighbourhood during a hostage situation in Sydney, Australia, and the rumored hijacking of a WestJet flight to Mexico, that were successfully quashed by denials from official accounts.
The case studies also offer lessons for organisations that may have plans in place to deal with an actual crisis, but haven’t considered how to handle online rumors and communicate before they have complete information or know what is true.
The researchers found that the vast majority of the tweets both affirming and denying the tworumours were retweets of a small number of Twitter accounts, demonstrating that a single account can significantly influence how information spreads.
Much of the online rumoring behaviour was driven by “breaking news” accounts that offer the veneer of officialdom but don’t necessarily follow standard journalistic practices of confirming information.
(With ANI inputs)