Michela Del Vicario

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The spreading of unsubstantiated rumors on online social networks (OSN) either unintentionally or intentionally (e.g., for political reasons or even trolling) can have serious consequences such as in the recent case of rumors about Ebola causing disruption to health-care workers. Here we show that indicators aimed at quantifying information consumption(More)
The wide availability of user-provided content in online social media facilitates the aggregation of people around common interests, worldviews, and narratives. However, the World Wide Web (WWW) also allows for the rapid dissemination of unsubstantiated rumors and conspiracy theories that often elicit rapid, large, but naive social responses such as the(More)
According to the World Economic Forum, the diffusion of unsubstantiated rumors on online social media is one of the main threats for our society. The disintermediated paradigm of content production and consumption on online social media might foster the formation of homogeneous communities (echo-chambers) around specific worldviews. Such a scenario has been(More)
Despite the enthusiastic rhetoric about the so called collective intelligence, conspiracy theories – e.g. global warming induced by chemtrails or the link between vaccines and autism – find on the Web a natural medium for their dissemination. Users preferentially consume information according to their system of beliefs and the strife within users of(More)
Social media enabled a direct path from producer to consumer of contents changing the way users get informed, debate, and shape their worldviews. Such a disintermediation might weaken consensus on social relevant issues in favor of rumors, mistrust, or conspiracy thinking-e.g., chem-trails inducing global warming, the link between vaccines and autism, or(More)
Recently a simple military exercise on the Internet was perceived as the beginning of a new civil war in the US. Social media aggregate people around common interests eliciting a collective framing of narratives and worldviews. However, the wide availability of user-provided content and the direct path between producers and consumers of information often(More)
Users online tend to select information that support and adhere their beliefs, and to form polarized groups sharing the same view-e.g. echo chambers. Algorithms for content promotion may favour this phenomenon, by accounting for users preferences and thus limiting the exposure to unsolicited contents. To shade light on this question, we perform a(More)
The wide availability of user-provided content in online social media facilitates the aggregation of people around common interests, worldviews, and narratives. Despite the enthusiastic rhetoric on the part of some that this process generates " collective intelligence " , the WWW also allows the rapid dissemination of unsubstantiated conspiracy theories(More)
Online users tend to select claims that adhere to their system of beliefs and to ignore dissenting information. Confirmation bias, indeed, plays a pivotal role in viral phenomena. Furthermore, the wide availability of content on the web fosters the aggregation of likeminded people where debates tend to enforce group polarization. Such a configuration might(More)
Facebook is flooded by diverse and heterogeneous content , from kittens up to music and news, passing through satirical and funny stories. Each piece of that corpus reflects the heterogeneity of the underlying social background. In the Italian Facebook we have found an interesting case: a page having more than 40K followers that every day posts the same(More)