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De-platforming disinformation: conspiracy theories and their control

Innes, Helen ORCID: and Innes, Martin ORCID: 2021. De-platforming disinformation: conspiracy theories and their control. Information, Communication and Society 10.1080/1369118X.2021.1994631

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Informed by two case studies of de-platforming interventions performed by Facebook against two high profile conspiracy theorists who had been messaging about Covid-19, this article investigates how de-platforming functions as an instrument of social control, illuminating the intended and unintended effects it induces. To help interpret the patterns in the data, two novel conceptual innovations are introduced. The concept of ‘minion accounts’ captures how following a de-platforming intervention, a series of secondary accounts are set up to continue the mission. Such accounts are part of a wider retinue of ‘re-platforming’ behaviours. Overall, the empirical evidence reviewed suggests that whilst de-platforming can constrain transmission of conspiratorial disinformation, it does not eradicate it.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: In Press
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Crime and Security Research Institute (CSURI)
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1369-118X
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 7 December 2021
Date of Acceptance: 8 October 2021
Last Modified: 02 May 2023 14:38

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