Public Opinion and Voting Behavior

Public Opinion and Voting Behavior

Public Perceptions of “Fake News” in the United States and Japan

Diana Owen Author ORCID home | opens in new tab Georgetown University
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Morihiro Ogasahara Tokyo University
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Shoko Kiyohara Meiji University
Abstract
This study compares how Japanese and American voters understand the concept of "fake news" and the consequences of misinformation. The spread of misinformation is far less prevalent in Japan than in the U.S. The practices of politicians using the label "fake news" to discredit information that politicians dislike is widespread in the U.S., but just catching on in Japan. Using survey data, the study examines patterns of political media use and trust in the media for the two countries. Notably, newspapers are used more extensively in Japan than in the U.S., and are a trusted information source. Social media are far less important for disseminating political information Japan than in the U.S., which helps to limit the spread of misinformation.
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