A large-scale analysis reveals that the identity of conspiracy theories on the net is not a strange person but an `` ordinary person ''



Past research suggests that `` conspiracy theorists may be associated with schizophrenia trends '', but a new survey of a total of 11 billion posts written on the online bulletin board reddit It turns out that there is no big difference between reddit users who post about conspiracy theory and other reddit users.

Pathways to conspiracy: The social and linguistic precursors of involvement in Reddit's conspiracy theory forum

Don't (just) blame echo chambers. Conspiracy theorists actively seek out their online communities

Study shows there's nothing wacky about conspiracy theorists


Research groups such as Colin Klein, who studies philosophy and psychology at the Australian National University, wrote in 224,625 reddit sub-forums in about eight years from October 2007 to May 2015 We analyzed the users who liked the conspiracy theory from about 11 billion posts from 1,149,406 users who did. Klein and colleagues first identified 466 bots by examining users who post too frequently, and excluded them from the analysis.

Next, submit at least 3 submissions to r / conspiracy , a sub-forum on the theme of conspiracy , and any one of the 6 months before posting to r / conspiracy for the first time In the meantime, we defined users who posted to sub-forums other than “r / conspiracy” at least four times as “r / conspiracy users” and started writing at the same time, but were involved in “r / conspiracy” Compared with no reddit users.

As a result, it turned out that “r / conspiracy users” frequently used sub-forums on politics, drugs, and Internet culture before becoming conspirators. Klein et al. 'Conspiracy theorists' self-selection 'seeking a community that shares the same opinions as their own, from the state that' r / conspiracy users 'followed a fixed path to' r / conspiracy ' I think it is. ”

by dotshock

However, even after examining the post about politics of “r / conspiracy users”, the content of the opinions was disjoint, and it was said that we could not obtain evidence that “r / conspiracy users” supported specific political opinions That. In addition, when we analyzed the style of “r / conspiracy users” in the sub-forum related to politics using a technique called sentiment analysis, it was almost the same as the style of ordinary reddit users, and there was little difference.

In particular, in contrast to past research results that conspiracy theorists claim that there are many words about “hostility” in past studies , in terms of words related to “compensatory” emotions such as “anger” and “frustration” There was no difference. From this result, Mr. Klein said, “There was no evidence to support previous studies that pointed out psychiatric problems and personality characteristics of conspiracy theorists.”

As for the reason why “r / conspiracy users” tend to be conspiracy theories, “The echo process in which conspiracy theory occurs is that certain beliefs are amplified or strengthened by communication in a closed space. The existence of the chamber phenomenon has been pointed out, but in fact, it is the result of seeking people who have the same idea as themselves, and such movement is not limited to conspiracy theory but is often seen on the Internet. '' Even if the contention of the conspiracy theorist is strange, he indicated that the process of forming such an assertion is the same as that of ordinary people.

in Note, Posted by log1l_ks