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Voters urged to be cautious of misinformation heading into the election

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Posted: Monday, October 19, 2020. 3:03 pm CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: As the election season nears Decision Day 2020 in Belize and the United States of America, political campaigns continue to produce and publish videos, flyers and more in an attempt to garner votes.

Political campaigns have intensified with more political advertisements on social media, some even with deceptive information.

But, how can we counter misinformation heading into an election?

Co-Founder of FactCheck.org, Dr. Kathleen Hall Jamieson says that the public can identify troll campaigns by scrutinizing carefully accounts that endorse any political candidate or party. There are many questions to ask including if the information seems legitimate or not.

Jamieson also advises to look at the accounts and news sites and comparing it with trusted news sites in the country.

Often times, politicians use data and information out of context in an attempt to misconstrue or misrepresent the facts. This has mostly been detected in debates.

“When message imbalance occurs, when there is more negative information about one candidate than the other, that message imbalance can affect votes… votes on the margin,” Jamieson said.

Readers can examine information by checking other credible news sources and doing their own research. Voters can verify the information being shared on social media by checking news sources to make well-informed decisions before going to the polls.

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