Nov 13, 2023
Fake news and disinformation are flourishing not only since the beginning of the COVID 19-pandemic and the war in Ukraine. External actors, such as Russia and China, have been trying to negatively influence democratic processes in the European Union and undermine the liberal model of democracy already for a long time. The same goes for internal actors, e.g. eurosceptical and extremist groups as well as certain media outlets, who contribute to spreading disinformation in the EU. These trends are further amplified by social media platforms and the use of artificial intelligence. Deep fakes, filter bubbles and echo chambers are used to deceive, influence and manipulate people’s perceptions, thus increasing social and political polarization in society.
In the run-up to the European Parliament elections in June 2024, a rise of disinformation campaigns and attacks on democratic and European electoral processes are expected – a risk which should not be underestimated and must be tackled in due time.
Disinformation – what does it mean? Who are the main actors spreading fake news within the EU? Which role does the EU play in the fight against disinformation? Which measures work well, where is the need for improvement? How strongly are we, as citizens, affected by disinformation in our daily life and what can every one of us do in order to recognise fake news and distinguish them from trustworthy information?
In the RADAR Youth Lab 26 young Europeans from 9 EU countries discussed how disinformation affects democratic processes.