Misinformation and Factual Corrections: The Case of the 2020 U.S. Election

March 30, 2022

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Beginning in September 2020 and concluding at the end of November, researchers conducted eight panel experiments to measure the effects of election-related misinformation and factual corrections. In total, they evaluated twenty-one highly-trafficked pieces of misinformation, as well as corresponding fact-checks. Three of the false items tested advanced fraudulent claims aboutthe election and were widely circulated on social media after election day. This document describes the findings related to these three pieces of election-related misinformation andcorresponding fact checks.

All experiments proceeded as follows. After providing background information, including their approval of President Trump, individuals participated in three independently-randomized experiments, each relating to a separate topic of misinformation. For each topic, respondents were assigned to one of three conditions: pure control, misinformation only, or misinformation followed by a fact-check. Participants were then asked about their belief in the false claim. The researchers estimate the effects of our treatments by comparing group averages.

You can access the full report here.