Lingfei WANG, Soochow University, China
Guoyan WANG, Soochow University, China
Scientific rumors have been running rampant in China lately. To understand the nature of their popularity, we analyzed 159 influential ‘hot scientific rumors’ (HSR) in China from the last decade. 73% of our sample concern health and safety. Our content analysis revealed that HSRs include detailed narrative elements (84.3%), appeal to fears (78.6%), offer vivid details (69.8%), and come from authoritative sources (57.2%). A qualitative comparative analysis revealed that the combination of detail and fear mongering are significant components of HSRs. It was also found that the combined use of multimedia and social networking helps spread rumors.
Document 1 : Document 1
Document 2 : Supplemental Material