Misinformation vs Disinformation

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In the past couple of years, disinformation has been widespread in the American society to influence public opinion. This has been amplified by the major social media networks like Twitter, Facebook and Google.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines Misinformation as “incorrect or misleading information“.

Disinformation: false information deliberately and often covertly spread (as by the planting of rumors) in order to influence public opinion or obscure the truth.

Merriam-Webster Dictionary

The Hill opinion contributor Steve Krakauer has an interesting article “in defense of misinformation” which deep-dives into misinformation vs disinformation.

In a perfect world, misinformation would not exist. Misinformation is certainly not preferable to correct information. Instead, what I worry about is the rush to correct misinformation and not just correct it but to actively seek it out. There’s a push now to spotlight it, and the end result allows the punishment to become far more severe than the crime.

Krakauer writes: “Misinformation is the cost of freedom. Misinformation is the tax we all pay for the freedom to say what we think, and the freedom to have unfettered access to as much information as possible — to engage independently, with little to no limitation from gatekeepers. [..] There’s only one way to counter misinformation in a responsible way — with more and better information.”

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