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The bad information of Dictionary.com was the word of the year 2018 false truth

NEW YORK Misinformation, as opposed to misinformation, was chosen on Monday as the word of the year for Dictionary.com in the tatters of "toxic", chosen earlier this month for the same honor of the Oxford Dictionaries in these tumultuous times.

Jane Solomon, a linguist in residence at Dictionary, said in a recent interview that her site's choice of "mis" over "dis" was deliberate, intended to serve as a "call to action" to be alert in the battle against false news, flat terraces Y anti-vaxxers, among other conduits.

It is the idea of ​​intention, whether inadvertently cheating or doing it on purpose, what the company based in Oakland, California, wanted to emphasize. The company decided that it would be high when others spent much of 2018 in low.

"The unbridled spread of misinformation is really providing new challenges to navigate life in 2018," Solomon told The Associated Press before the news of the year. "Misinformation has been around for a long time, but during the last decade or so, the rise of social networks has really changed the way information is shared, and we believe that understanding the concept of misinformation is vital to identify the wrong information as we find it in The Wild, and that could ultimately help to slow down its impact. "

When studying searches on the site that had a tendency this year, Dictionary noted that "our relationship with the truth is something that came up again and again," he said.

For example, the word "mainstream" appeared a lot, appearing in January as the term "mainstream media," or MSM, grew to gigantic proportions, exerted as an insult by some of the political right. Other words that revolved around the same problem included a sudden search increase in February for "reasonable lie" After Hope Hicks, the then director of communications at the White House, admitted to saying a few about President Trump.

The word "Orwellian" appeared in the exhaustive searches in May, after a statement attributed to the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, accused the Chinese government of: "Orwellian nonsense" in trying to impose its views on US citizens and private companies when it stated that United Airlines, American Airlines and other foreign companies should refer to Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao as part of China on public guidance materials, such as their sites Web.

The misinformation, said Solomon, "frames everything we have gone through in the last 12 months." In that sense, the site with 90 million monthly users has been busy adding new word entries to "filter bubble" "false news", "post-fact" "post-truth" and "homophily", among others. Other word entries on the site have been updated to reflect new timely meanings, such as "echo chamber".

The finalists of the company for the highest honor include the "representation", driven by the popularity of the films. "Black Panther" Y "Mad Asian rich people" along with the victories during mid-term elections in the United States for Muslim women, Native Americans and LGBTQ candidates.

But the rise in misinformation, said Solomon, extends far beyond the borders of the United States and the role of Facebook in spreading false news and propaganda in the United States. Cambridge Analytica scandal. The use of Facebook and other social networks to incite violence and conflict were documented around the world in 2018, he said.

"The hate speech and the rumors published in Facebook facilitated violence against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, riots began In Sri Lanka, after the false news, the Buddhist majority of the country was against the Muslims, and false rumors about the kidnappers of children on WhatsApp led to mob violence in India, "said Solomon.

Is disinformation or disinformation at stake in terms of the most prominent conspiracy theories of the year? Solomon noticed the proliferation in social media about the students in the shooting at the Parkland school being crisis actors instead of victims of violence, and on a group of migrants from honduras who are heading north being financed by "liberal rich".

In other places of culture, countless podcasts and videos have spread the absurd notion of a global cover-up that the Earth is flat instead of round. The idea of ​​"misinfodemics" has emerged in recent years to identify the movement against vaccination and other beliefs that lead to health crises in the real world, said Solomon.

There are distinctions between disinformation and disinformation to emphasize.

"Disinformation would also have been a very, very interesting word of the year this year, but our choice of misinformation was very intentional," he said. "Misinformation is a word that seems to look externally to examine the behavior of others." It's like pointing out behavior and saying: "THIS is disinformation." With misinformation, there is still some of that pointing, but also can look more internally to help us evaluate our own behavior, which is very, very important in the fight against misinformation, it is a word of self-reflection, and in that it can be a call to action. without an infamous agenda and still spread misinformation. "

He pointed out the "law of Poe" when cutting and dicing "misinfo" and "disinfo". The term, dating from 2005, has become an abbreviation of the Internet to summarize how easy it is to spread satire as an online truth when the intention of an author is not clearly indicated.

The phrase is based on a comment that Nathan Poe published in a Christian forum during a discussion on creationism, in which he commented: "Without a smiling wink or another brazen display of humor, it is absolutely impossible (sic) to parody a creationist in in such a way that someone (in italics) does not confuse with the genuine article ".

Dictionary.com chose "accomplice" Like the word of last year. In 2016, it was "xenophobia."

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