You probably had enough of fake news in your social media feed, but they just keep on being circulated around by people around you. Fake news being sent to you on a daily basis might already made you numb and unaffected, but have you ever wondered which among your circle of family and friends spent the most time in sharing them? Your guess might just be the same with the result of a recent study on the Facebook situation during the 2016 US elections. According to this study, older people above the age of 65 are more fond of patronizing fake news compared to other age groups.
Fake News Convince Older People More Than The Young Ones
Researchers from Princeton University and New York University found out that Facebook users age 65 and higher shared more fake news than the younger generations during the last presidential elections. This age group shared seven times the amount of fake news contents shared by the young ones.
The exact figures from the study show that out of 3,500 US-based participants, 11 percent of this number are people at or older than 65 who had shared fake news during the last election. This is higher than only 3 percent of the respondents that age from 18 to 29. However, even if this figure is small, it tells us that the younger generation has a chance of being fooled by fake news. Thus, we should also be wary of the things we read online. If you’re on Instagram and purchased volgers kopen, chances are many people have already seen the content that you posted. and it might be a little too late to delete it. Still, you can always admit that you are a victim of fake news.
People’s Political Stand Doesn’t Matter
Putting politics and ideologies aside, it is interesting to note from this study that there is stronger correlation when the number of incidents of fake news sharing is linked with age, compared to a person’s political affiliation (whether he supports the Republicans or Democrats).
With the result of the study, one could easily blame the baby boomers for the proliferation of fake news, not only during the 2016 presidential elections but also up to this point in time where fake news continues to hide under the guise of credible and unbiased reports.
Why Do Older People Fall Prey Into Fake News
While the research pinpoints the age group that turned out to be the biggest peddler of fake news, it did not offer any explanation why. However, if you think about it, older people tend to suffer from deterioration of cognitive skills, which probably makes it harder for them to distinguish actual news from fake news. Their lack of experience in the digital world compared to the younger generation also does not help.
There are many reasons people join the social media, but there is a fraction of them which is more likely to believe that everything they see in the social media are correct. In this case, we should not be too critical of our older relatives that sent us countless of fake news reports.