Canadians feeling inundated with misinformation about coronavirus


As the coronavirus pandemic takes hold on home soil, nine out of 10 (88 per cent) Canadians are convinced that misinformation about the virus is circulating around the globe and are sure they'll be exposed to fake news before it's over (90 per cent).

These findings come from a new survey by The Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF) and Maru/Matchbox, fielded over the past weekend when many Canadians were trying to get a handle on a situation that was evolving by the hour.

At a time when three-quarters of Canadians (77 per cent) say they have been paying even more attention to the news, some news sources are emerging as more "trusted" than others when it comes to health-related information. Most Canadians (89 per cent) say they rely on their trusted news sources for information during the crisis, but with misinformation running rampant across all social media and online sources, nearly half (47 per cent) don't know which news sources to trust.

"Canadians need access to trusted sources of news and information," says Natalie Turvey, CJF President and Executive Director. "And during this period, information is critical. Many people are making decisions based on what is coming across their social feeds and those decisions have a ripple effect across the country and around the world. It has never been more important to have clarity. There is no place for misinformation during a crisis."

Turvey adds that the CJF's Doubt It news literacy resources can help people engage their inner skeptic and determine what information is vital in protecting themselves and their families at home and abroad.