on ili-l) a Washington Post story:
Dewey, C. (2016, ). 6 in 10 of you will share this link without reading it, a new, depressing study says. Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-intersect/wp/2016/06/16/six-in-10-of-you-will-share-this-link-without-reading-it-according-to-a-new-and-depressing-study/#
I felt I ought to, ahem, read the story before sharing it here. It highlights a spoof article in Science Post in which only the first paragraph was actual meaningful text, but which nevertheless was shared widely, often by people who evidently hadn't realised most of the article was "ipsem lorum" (meaningless filler text in latin). Dewey then goes on the discuss findings in an ACM paper. Since the very topic of the article was "sharing without reading" I thought I should at least skim this article too.
Interestingly, I would say that, whilst Dewey doubtless had read the paper, I would not say that she gives an unbiased picture of its message. It is late at night and I haven't read the stats properly, but I think the ACM paper compared the number of shares of a URL (on Twitter) with the number of times the URL itself was clicked. Although this implies that some people shared without clicking or reading, it does not actually make that claim. However (as the title of her article implies) Dewey's focus is on people who share links without having clicked them themselves, which she sees as part of the "oft-demoralizing cesspool that is Internet culture" (she also mentions "the utter lack of intelligent online discourse around any remotely complicated, controversial topic").
In fact this could make it an interesting article for information literacy discussion from several angles: how people treat spoof articles; the issue of sharing web links that you haven't investigated at all; the way in which mass media simplify and possibly distort the findings of scientic papers.
It did make me reflect: I do share items on this blog that I haven't read in full (you may be shocked to learn) but I have always checked the link and skimmed enough of it to tell whether I think it is worth looking at. However, I may sometimes share a link on Twitter without reading it, if it's from someone I trust and I think my followers might find it interesting. I would imagine that some people might share my tweets of these blog posts similarly (do reply if you have any comments on this - though bear in mind that I moderate comments - as otherwise I have loads of spam - so there will be a delay before it appears).
Photo by Sheila Webber: trees, June 2016