Science & Technology

Trusting Your Gut Instinct Could See You Fall for COVID Misinformation

COVID Misinformation Concept

Individuals who suppose based mostly on their first instincts usually tend to consider and share COVID-19 misinformation, in line with new analysis from The Australian Nationwide College (ANU).

The examine in contrast intuitive thinkers, those that are likely to make choices on instant intuition, with reflective thinkers, those that cease and mirror on the accuracy of knowledge offered to them.

As a part of the examine, 742 Australians had been proven a mixture of 5 already-debunked COVID-19 claims and 5 correct statements from public well being authorities. The contributors had been then requested to finish a brief check of their considering fashion.

Lead writer, ANU PhD researcher Matthew Nurse, stated Australians who offered intuitive but false solutions on the considering fashion check had been considerably worse at discerning between the correct statements and the misinformation.

“Viral misinformation about COVID-19 has unfold similar to the virus itself,” Mr. Nurse stated.

“Realizing {that a} reliance on instinct is perhaps a minimum of partly accountable for the unfold of COVID-19 misinformation provides science communicators essential clues about how to reply to this problem.

“For instance, merely reminding folks to take their time and suppose by way of dodgy claims may assist folks reject misinformation and hopefully forestall them from following ineffective or harmful recommendation.

“Encouraging folks to suppose twice earlier than sharing would possibly decelerate the unfold of false claims too.”

The analysis has been printed within the journal Reminiscence and Cognition and aligns with comparable analysis carried out in america, United Kingdom and Canada.

Reference: “Analytic considering predicts accuracy scores and willingness to share COVID-19 misinformation in Australia” by Matthew S. Nurse, Robert M. Ross, Ozan Isler and Dirk Van Rooy, 27 August 2021, Reminiscence and Cognition.
DOI: 10.3758/s13421-021-01219-5
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