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Update - Oregon Disinformation Index
A look at the first data refresh & newest version of the ODI
Hey Folks! Based on some feedback and just plain ol’ common sense, we made some changes to the Oregon Disinformation Index. So it will look a little different than the previous version.
Perhaps more interesting, we actually did our first data refresh on the ODI! So that means we can actually start to see some trends developing in the Oregon disinformation landscape.
So, each time we refresh data (2x month) we’ll send a note to subscribers to highlight meaningful takeaways and insights. It’ll go something like this…
ODI January 2022 Insights
One of the dangers of disinformation is the pipeline aspect - folks often graduate from light disinformation into more hardcore, more dangerous disinformation. Digital rabbit holes that you’ll find across the digital landscape.
Based on this early set of ODI data, we can start to see some news “personalities” and media organizations popping up far more frequently than others. For example:
Gregg Gutfield - Fox News host who sprays his audience with well-washed lies and conspiracies. He purports to have a background in comedy, but I’ve never heard him say anything funny. But the Fox News crowd loves him. They think he’s clever, charming even.
In terms of disinformation, here’s what Politifact has collected on this guy.
Steven Crowder - Another “comedian”-turned-right-wing douchebag that makes a living for being terrible on YouTube. Racism. Homophobia. Election conspiracies. And, again, not even in the same neighborhood as anything remotely funny.
Here’s what he’s been up to over the past couple years.
And we can also start to see larger trends across channels
ODI looks at disinformation trends across three channels: social media, podcasts, and YouTube. I kinda though social media was going to be the most tame of the three, and that YouTube would source the most extreme content.
With the data we have so far, it actually looks like podcasts is where folks go for the most extreme types of disinformation. YouTube is infamous for it’s algorithm-fueled content rabbit holes, but even the more extreme segment of Oregon’s disinformation audience tends to consume relatively normal content there. The weird thing is, though, the audiences we’re tracking also consume some super-mild right-wing podcasts. Podcasting as a disinformation channel is just a big ball of weird at this point.
Ever hear of the Northwest Observer?
ODI is mostly an index of national media sources piping disinformation into Oregon. But a local media organization popped up in this last refresh - the Northwest Observer. They are rising in popularity among a more extreme right-wing audience.
Next update - around Jan 20th. Thanks!
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