City Research Online

Closing the Barn Door? Fact-checking America’s Covid-19 “Infodemic”

Singer, J. ORCID: 0000-0002-5777-9065 (2023). Closing the Barn Door? Fact-checking America’s Covid-19 “Infodemic”. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 100(2), pp. 332-353. doi: 10.1177/10776990231168599


Based on a study of U.S.-tagged items in a global database of fact-checked statements about the novel coronavirus throughout the first year of the pandemic, this article explores the nature of fact-checkers’ “retroactive gatekeeping.” This term is introduced here to describe the process of assessing the veracity of information after it has entered the public domain rather than before. Although an overwhelming majority of statements across 16 thematic categories were deemed false and debunked, often repeatedly, misinformation continued to circulate freely and widely.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Reuse is restricted to non-commercial and no derivative uses.
Publisher Keywords: Covid-19, fact-checking, gatekeeping, infodemic, misinformation
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1990 Broadcasting
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Departments: School of Communication & Creativity > Journalism
[thumbnail of JMCQBarnDoorSinger2023.pdf]
Text - Accepted Version
Download (394kB) | Preview


Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login