With the advent of social media the boundary separating the real world from the virtual world has disappeared, allowing us to identify them both quite clearly. Today we find a post-truth world online, where deliberately false or distorted news is used to significantly shape individual decisions, especially as regards political and electoral issues. Is «fake news» just a new way of defining the disinformation processes that have always been present in the public sphere? What are the technological and psychosocial mechanisms allowing the emergence and diffusion of this phenomenon? Where is fake news born? And how can we defend ourselves?
Giuseppe Riva teaches Psychology of Communication at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan, where he heads the Communication Interaction and Ergonomics of New Technologies Lab; he is also the president of the International Association of CyberPsychology, Training, and Rehabilitation (i-ACToR).