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Google’s search results often misidentify controversial characters, potentially contributing to the spread of misinformation. (Nathana Rebouças/Unsplash)

Language matters when Googling controversial people

Google search algorithms often pull up misleading descriptors for controversial people, and results can differ across languages. Understanding how these algorithms function can address misinformation.
The legacy of the Sandy Hook shootings in 2012 continues to reverberate nine years later, including in how conspiracy theories have changed since the tragedy. Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/AFP via Getty Images

How conspiracy theories in the US became more personal, more cruel and more mainstream after the Sandy Hook shootings

The Sandy Hook school shooting continues to reverberate in the US nine years later, marking a new age of misinformation.
A man holding a Q sign, a reference to a conspiracy theory group, waits to enter a campaign rally with President Trump, Aug. 2, 2018, in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. AP/Matt Rourke

Something’s going on here: Building a comprehensive profile of conspiracy thinkers

Some people are habitual conspiracy thinkers – there’s a plan behind everything, and it’s usually malevolent. One scientist set out to understand who is likely to ascribe to these theories.
Alex Jones speaks during a rally for candidate Donald Trump near the Republican National Convention in July 2016. Reuters/Lucas Jackson

Audiences love the anger: Alex Jones, or someone like him, will be back

Confrontational characters spouting conspiracy theories and fringe ideas have been around since American broadcasting began. With Alex Jones banished from the web, someone else will take his place.
Funeral services took place for Benjamin Andrew Wheeler, one of the students killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, while a hearse with another shooting victim drives by. AP Photo/Julio Cortez

Falsehoods, Sandy Hook and suing Alex Jones

Family members of Sandy Hook victims sued media personality Alex Jones over his claims that the killings were a hoax they participated in. Current law makes their lawsuit unnecessarily hard to prove.

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