Updated · Feb 08, 2023
Fake news is real, and it’s out there. The essential question is whether you can spot it. Our jaw-dropping fake news statistics tell the story of what’s happening online. The following numbers will have you rethinking how you read articles and updates and what it means for the industry and anyone who trusts that the information is accurate.
Jaw-Dropping Fake News Statistics
The following statistics reveal what’s unfolding around information distributed to a large audience.
- 62% of all Internet information can be fake.
- 80% of US adults have consumed fake news.
- 26% of Americans believe they can recognize fake news.
- 38.2% of Americans have accidentally shared fake news.
- 10% of Americans have admitted sharing fake news on social media platforms.
- 65% of Americans fully trust traditional media outlets.
- 67% of US adults have read false information on social media.
- 64% of US adults believe that fabricated information causes much confusion about basic facts of current issues.
- 50% of Americans think that fake news is a significant problem.
General Facts About Fake News
The following stats paint a picture of how fake news affects us, who may be to blame, and what the digital news landscape looks like today.
1. 80% of US adults have consumed fake news.
Fake news stats show that more than half of US adults state that they have digested information that’s been fabricated. So who can we trust? Which outlets or publishers are the culprits pushing misleading statistics in the news out to the public?
2. 50% of Americans think that fake news is a significant problem.
Most who consume news regularly think that fake news is a big problem because the content often appears as though it’s been produced by a reliable source or news outlet. People feel strongly that the issue needs to be addressed.
3. 44% of news consumers say news from traditional sources can’t be trusted.
Traditional news outlets are struggling with consumer trust these days. Many say this issue causes confusion, and consumers must take extra steps to review and verify if the information is accurate before believing it.
4. 87% of global citizens want better education to identify fake news.
People worldwide would like to see fake news curbed and removed. They want to see more done about the problem. The first step towards this action is to be better educated in identifying which are fake news stories.
5. 80% of US adults reported seeing fake news about the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic opened up another can of worms related to fake news. Many Americans stated that fake reports and information were distributed and shared about the pandemic.
Fake News Networks Statistics
Which networks are to blame for spreading fake news and causing such frustration? The news accuracy percentage might be lower than you expect. Consider the following stats.
6. 27% of US adults believe mainstream media outlets report fake news.
Some US adults have stated that they regularly see fake news on specific news networks, causing some to lose trust in the networks—not knowing what to believe.
7. 65% of Americans put their full trust in traditional media outlets.
Many US adults say they trust traditional media outlets for news and information, but this doesn’t always mean they aren’t part of the problem. Others are hesitant to believe everything they read from the networks.
8. Less than 50% of US adults find most major news outlets credible.
Americans find some news networks somewhat credible, but about half of US adults don’t trust most major news outlets. While some have always been skeptical, news source credibility seems to be a growing problem.
9. In 2021, 8% of respondents to a survey in the US said they used Facebook for news.
Facebook remains the leading social media network for news consumption among US consumers. There’s also recent interest in using YouTube for news.
Fake News Statistics
The percentage of unreliable information on the internet is astonishing.
10. 32% of Americans state they often see fabricated political news online.
A primary concern about fake news is that much political information is fabricated. If someone cannot spot manufactured reports, they might ignorantly share and spread this disinformation.
11. 16% say they’ve shared a story they later realized was fake.
Even though 16% is a small percentage, it’s still concerning. Some US consumers say they’ve shared on social media false information to realize later it was fake.
12. 64% of US adults think that fake news causes considerable confusion about basic facts about current issues.
Not only is fake news distributed and shared, but most US adults believe these stories create much confusion online and among the population.
13. 80% of students surveyed believe that sponsored content articles are actual news stories.
Sponsored stories spread online should be highlighted as fake news data. Many middle school students can’t tell native (paid) ads from articles, while some high school students cannot distinguish between real and fake news sources on Facebook.
14. 86% of internet users admit being duped by fake news.
Many using the internet acknowledge that they’ve been confused and deceived into believing news that wasn’t true.
Social Media Misinformation Statistics
Many use social media platforms to receive news. The following false information on social media statistics shows the impact of fake news on these platforms.
15. Americans believe that 61% of news on social media contains misinformation.
Many US adults are convinced they see fake news on media outlets, which is concerning since many use these platforms daily to receive their news.
16. 10% of Americans have admitted to sharing fake news on social media platforms.
Some Americans admit that they are to blame for sharing fake news alternative facts on social media platforms—another reason why fake news is spreading and should be addressed on a larger scale.
17. 67% of US adults say they’ve come across false information on social media.
Many US adults have stated that they’ve read fake news articles on social media. (Others might’ve read fake news but couldn’t identify it.)
18. Facebook posts from misinformation sources receive six times more engagement than reputable news sites.
Fake news on Facebook statistics and social media is prevalent, and many preoccupied with it are likely to share it. Some are drawn to these stories and information and may not realize that they’re part of the problem of spreading misinformation.
Discerning fake news statistics in the media and social media platforms is essential when reading information online and sharing it with others. The future of fake news seems a bit unsure, but hopefully, shedding more light on the issue will help get it under better control.
Deyan has been fascinated by technology his whole life. From the first Tetris game all the way to Falcon Heavy. Working for TechJury is like a dream come true, combining both his passions – writing and technology. In his free time (which is pretty scarce, thanks to his three kids), Deyan enjoys traveling and exploring new places. Always with a few chargers and a couple of gadgets in the backpack. He makes mean dizzying Island Paradise cocktails too.
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