[SydPhil] "Online conspiracy theorizing and the psychology of trust"; Friday May 19th, 4pm

Kristie Miller kristie_miller at yahoo.com
Thu May 18 08:46:55 AEST 2017

Dear all,

Tomorrow, Colin Klein (Macquarie) will be presenting the following paper:

"Online conspiracy theorizing and the psychology of trust"
Friday May 19th, 4pm 
Carslaw 275

Conspiracy theorising plays an increasingly important (and pernicious) role in social and political discourse. Psychological study of conspiracy endorsement tends to be hampered by selection bias and difficulties of access. I will present research which uses automated analysis of a large corpus of comments from the conspiracy forum on the online site reddit.com <http://reddit.com/>. We demonstrate that there are a variety of distinct sub-communities with different interests and potentially different pathways into the forum, suggesting that no comprehensive psychological theory will be adequate to explain the dynamics of such communities. Further, while conspiracy theories may seem illogical or baffling, in many cases conspiracy theorising follows well-established epistemic norms. I suggest an alternative, social view on which conspiracy theorising might be better seen to illuminate of flaws in the default attitude towards testimony and rumour in complex societies. 

Al welcome

Associate Professor Kristie Miller
Senior ARC Research Fellow
Joint Director, the Centre for Time
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry and
The Centre for Time
The University of Sydney
Sydney Australia
Room S212, A 14

kmiller at usyd.edu.au
kristie_miller at yahoo.com
Ph: +612 9036 9663

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