Follow and spread the word: the effects of avatars and message framing in promoting fact checking posts on social media

Jian Ren Hou, Sarawut Kankham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: Fact-checking is a process of seeking and displaying facts to confirm or counter uncertain information, which reduces the spread of fake news. However, little is known about how to promote fact-checking posts to online users on social media. Through uncertainty reduction theory and message framing, this first study examines the effect of fact-checking posts on social media with an avatar on online users' trust, attitudes, and behavioral intentions. The authors further investigate the congruency effects between promotional message framing (gain/loss/neutral) and facial expressions of the avatar (happy/angry/neutral) on online users' trust, attitudes, and behavioral intentions in the second study. Design/methodology/approach: The authors conducted two studies and statistically analyzed 120 samples (study 1) and 519 samples (study 2) from Facebook users. Findings: Results showed that including the neutral facial expression avatar in fact-checking posts leads to online users' greater trust and more positive attitudes. Furthermore, the congruency effects between loss message framing and the angry facial expression of the avatar can effectively promote online users' trust and attitudes as well as stronger intentions to follow and share. Originality/value: This study offers theoretical implications for fact-checking studies, and practical implications for online fact-checkers to apply these findings to design effective fact-checking posts and spread the veracity of information on social media.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInformation Technology and People
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Library and Information Sciences

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Follow and spread the word: the effects of avatars and message framing in promoting fact checking posts on social media'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this