Only 1% of non-critical people or robot Spreading rumors automatically makes it spread faster: time can be reduced by 20% to cover half of the population connected to social networks such as WhatsApp. This is the result of a study conducted by researchers from the Polytechnic University of Madrid and other centers, taking into account the polarization of individuals in news dissemination.
The spread of ideas on social media is an increasingly important phenomenon, and it plays a vital role in understanding how social media proliferates. False news or False news, And its impact on the democratic process.
In situations such as the covid-19 pandemic, in many cases, social networks have been used to disseminate unverified information and even associate the disease with 5G networks, which highlights the importance of considering the role of social networks . The network is in the dissemination of information, especially in the dissemination of information.
Now, researchers Jesús San Martín of the Polytechnic University of Madrid (UPM), Fátima Drubi of the University of Oviedo and Daniel Rodríguez Pérez of UNED have jointly developed a research result. mathematical model Analyze the possibility of rumors spreading more or less quickly in social networks and the influence of personal polarization on the process.The research was published in the journal Mathematics and computers in simulation.
“spread False news Through social networks and its impact on today’s society is obvious. He explained that the 2016 U.S. election or the Brexit referendum, as well as the biased news campaigns discovered in Catalonia in 2018, are just some examples of how these procedures are reshaping society and affecting democracy. ” Jesus Saint Martin, From UPM Engineering and Industrial Design Higher Technical School.
“Having a tool like the one we developed can infer the dissemination mechanism of this news and compare it with False news He added that deliberate spread to attack our society is of greater social importance than ever before.
Three parameters of social networks
Taking into account the differences based on the intention of spreading fake news, the author simulated the spread of rumors based on three characteristic parameters of social networks: Everyone knows the rumors of leaving, The polarized people receiving news will likely Share with your contacts And its group, and The proportion of the population Composed of polarized people (not critical of news content) or robot (A computer program that automatically performs repetitive tasks) spreads automatically as soon as the rumor spreads.
“Our goal is twofold. On the one hand, we want to find the laws governing the evolution of the spread of rumors in the network, and find out how long the rumors will reach a given score of individuals connected to the network. Aspect, for us, detecting whether there is robot Or non-critical people, they automatically forward a certain rumor in a coordinated way and see how they affect the spread of news,” the researcher said.
“With the social network model as a starting point, we started from WhatsApp student groups, The results show that the presence of only 1% of bots or non-critical people can reduce the time required for news to reach half of the population connected to the social network by 20%,” he added.
The researchers also used their model to fit published empirical data about the spread of hoaxes on WhatsApp.In the case of analysis, your model can predict A news item will cover half of the population in less than 6 days, And cover 99% of the network within 3.5 months.
For the team, the importance of these results is that they provide a analyzing tool In this way, we can infer what is happening in the social network based on the development of the rumor and the personal behavior related to the spread.
Jesús San Martín and so on. “Non-critically polarized groups: the influence of the spread of false news on social networks as facts”. Mathematics and computers in simulation, 2020.