Princeton Research on Covid-19 Misinformation Fuels Partnership with Microsoft Research

Wednesday, Apr 22, 2020

'Open Facebook or Twitter on any given day during the Covid-19 global pandemic, and it takes just moments before a questionable claim about the coronavirus appears — 5G technology causes people to succumb to the virus; inhaling steam will cure it; the virus is a bioweapon gone wrong. From the origins of the virus or potential treatments to what the U.S. federal government is or is not doing in response, misinformation abounds.

Last month, Jacob N. Shapiro, co-director of Princeton University’s Empirical Studies of Conflict Project (ESOC), asked ESOC research specialist Jan Oledan to look at misinformation narratives concerning the coronavirus. Since then, the effort has grown into a full-fledged research project and collaboration between ESOC and Microsoft Research.

“Our ultimate goal is to contribute ground truth on narratives so that researchers can develop better knowledge about who shares misinformation and its impact. This also will help industry partners like Microsoft develop better tools to prevent their systems from spreading it,” said Shapiro, professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.'

Read this story, reported by The Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.