iSchool Research Symposium: Jin Ha Lee
Title: Misinformation & Popular Culture
Abstract: Misinformation is a critical challenge for society. Much of the growing body of research on misinformation focuses exclusively on crisis or high-stress contexts such as natural disasters, terrorism, pandemic, or elections. While this body of work contributes to advancing our understanding of the spread of misinformation, the crisis-related scope limits our knowledge of how people encounter and deal with misinformation in their daily lives, when they are less likely to be making time-sensitive, emotionally-charged, safety-critical, and/or rushed decisions. The context of popular culture is a fertile ground for studying misinformation in more everyday scenarios. Popular culture also provides novel opportunities for engaging the general public with regards to misinformation education.
In this talk, I will present two projects that showcase connections between popular culture and misinformation research: 1) a study on popular culture fandom, specifically BTS ARMY, to better understand how misinformation spreads in an everyday context and how people deal with misinformation, and 2) a project on developing and implementing misinformation escape rooms as an opportunity to use games and other play-based approaches for addressing misinformation. These projects highlight the unique role of popular culture in misinformation education in terms of the power to reach a wide and diverse audience to influence individuals’ perspectives related to misinformation.
Bio: Jin Ha Lee is a Professor and the Founder/Director of the GAMER Group at the University of Washington Information School. Her research focuses on exploring new ideas and approaches for organizing and providing access to popular music, multimedia, and interactive media, understanding user behavior related to the creation and consumption of these media, and using these media for informal learning in venues such as libraries and museums.