The Ineffectiveness of Fact-checking Labels on News Memes and Articles

Anne Oeldorf-Hirsch, Mike Schmierbach, Alyssa Appelman, Michael P. Boyle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


With most Internet users now getting news from social media, there is growing concern about how to verify the content that appears on these platforms. Two experiments tested the effects of fact-checking labels (confirmed vs. disputed) by source (peer vs. third-party) on credibility, virality, and information seeking of news posted on social media. Study 1 (N = 312) tested the effects of these labels on memes, and Study 2 (N = 452) tested the same effects on news articles. Results indicate that, although fact-checking labels do not seem to have a beneficial effect on credibility perceptions of individual news posts, their presence does seem to increase judgments of the site’s quality overall. This presents key implications for theory and design in fact-checking and news consumption on social media.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalMass Communication and Society
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication


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