Welcome to this new blog at Harvard from a science passionate and multi-language student. In Factual my mission will be to discuss science-based facts in order to bust all those myths that populate the Internet nowadays.
Why this? Because this is the era of disinformation. Anyone with a computer and Internet connection can start writing, and the majority of people will believe it only because it is written on the Internet, as Dr. Gilbert found in 1993.
That year, Dr. Gilbert conducted a study that sought to determine our attitude when we received information. He put forward two possibilities:
By default, we believe what we read. And we only begin to doubt it when we find some evidence that we may be wrong.
Or, on the contrary, after reading an information, we judge it. if it seems correct, we believe it.
Even thought the second option seems the most logical, Dr. Gilbert found that when people are distracted or in a hurry, such as we are in this society, they tend to assume everything they read is true, as their judging ability is impaired.
Without time to think, people simply believe what they read.
This is why amongst some personal thoughts about education in English and Spanish, in this weblog you will also find some myth-busting from an evidence-based point of view in personal development (where people are more prone to believe everything they read), technology and marketing.
Source: Gilbert et al., You cannot believe everything your read. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 1993 65(2)