I hate that this is a thing but I can’t not agree. Most of the friends I have on Facebook over age 65 shares some of the most fake, false and weird political stuff – and this is coming from a conservative Republican!
A new study of American Facebook users suggests that older generations were most likely to share “fake news” stories during the 2016 presidential election.
More than 90 percent of Facebook users in the study did not share misinformation to their friends’ feeds, according to the research. Of those that did, however, the study found that age was the most significant factor. The study found that “the oldest Americans, especially those over 65, were more likely to share fake news to their Facebook friends.” This was true even when holding other factors like ideology and partisanship constant.
The researchers also found that conservatives were more likely to share fake news than liberals, but note that this may be due to an overall pro-Trump slant in fake news and not an inherent quality of conservatives.
The analysis was conducted by politics researchers at Princeton University and New York University. Their results were published on Wednesday in Science Advances, and underscore the benefits of looking at middle-age and elderly user behavior on Facebook and other platforms—especially considering the outsized influence of social media around the world.