False and misleading information is a major threat to social and political stability. It is implicated in the resurgence of vaccine-preventable diseases, efforts to undermine the political process, and the amplification of social divisions. Yet, online disinformation is a complex problem with many contributing factors. In response, many countries have provided additional funding for media and information literacy.
This citizen-focussed approach is also championed by the Provenance project, a large European research project led by DCU FuJo. The aim is to help citizens evaluate content while they browse the web or social media. An iconographic ‘Verification Indicator’ provides contextual information about pieces of online content. For example, it provides information about the origin of the content, its similarity to other content, the quality of the writing including the use of loaded or highly emotional language, and the degree of visual manipulation if any.