Experts are warning that there is a large amount of misinformation and disinformation circulating in the campaign for the Australian referendum on the Indigenous Voice to Parliament. Misinformation refers to false or misleading content spread without the intent to deceive, while disinformation is intentionally false information spread to deceive people. Differentiating between the two can be complicated as it requires understanding the intent of the person spreading the information. The issue of misinformation and disinformation is particularly prevalent in the debate surrounding the Indigenous Voice to Parliament. When encountering content on social media, it’s important to consider the source and the way the information is presented. Misleading content often uses emotive language to elicit strong emotional reactions, making people less likely to critically analyze the information. Other techniques include oversimplified arguments, scapegoating individuals, and false dichotomies. It is crucial to verify sources and consider the nature of the person or organization making a claim. Engaging in deliberation and seeking information from trusted news sources or official websites can help in evaluating the validity of the information. When encountering misinformation, it’s generally not recommended to engage directly with it, as this can inadvertently promote its visibility. Instead, it may be more effective to report the misinformation to the platform and engage in one-on-one discussions with individuals if necessary. The Australian Electoral Commission has set up a website to address and counter disinformation related to the Indigenous Voice referendum.
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