Title: Helping the Public Evaluate Health Information Credibility in the Era of “Fake Health News”
Presenter: Alla Keselman, PhD
Abstract: With the emergence of new Web media platforms and the ubiquity of social media, critical evaluation of online health information has taken on a new dimension and urgency. At the same time, many established information quality evaluation guidelines address information characteristics other than the content (e.g., authority, currency) and do not address information presented via novel Web technologies. This talk will describe a research program that develops a methodological approach for analyzing diverse online health information sources. It will also present a window into the universe of non-evidence-based online health information, particularly as it pertains to the possibility of curing type 2 diabetes. The presentation will use the above evaluation criteria to describe how these sites portray complexity of type 2 diabetes, characterize healthcare establishment, use language and emotional cues, discuss medical research, and convey certainty. It will also address the potential role of technology in supporting users in the changing digital health ecosystem.