Inoculation theory suggests that exposing people to tactics used by those creating or circulating fake news acts as a ‘psychological vaccine’ to help protect us when we encounter misinformation. A new game released today by the UK Government is putting that theory into practice to combat COVID-19 misinformation.
Developed by researchers at Cambridge University, the Go Viral! game puts players in the shoes of a creator of false news to help them understand how misinformation is made and circulated online.
The game aims to expose players to the common techniques used by spreaders of misinformation, such as the use of emotionally charged language to stoke outrage and fear. This means they can better protect themselves when they come across these techniques in the real world. Find out more about the game in this video, and play it online here to develop your skills in spotting misinformation.