During an unfolding crisis, information may not be available, and even when it does become available, it needs to be verified before being released. When the demand for speedy information is not met, it is natural for some individuals to try and fill the void by pushing out a story or social media post that may be factually inaccurate, or worse, incorrect.
As many instances have shown, much of what has been posted by individuals, well-meaning or otherwise, has not been verified. Since smartphones allow individuals to be both information creators and broadcasters, misinformation will inevitably be generated and widely disseminated.
Putting out such misinformation can adversely impact the management of an ongoing crisis.
…Damien D. Cheong is a Research Fellow in the National Security Studies Programme at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies of Nanyang Technological University.
Last updated on 03/04/2018