Understanding Twitters behavior during the pandemic: Fake News and Fear

The outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has been accompanied by a large amount of misleading and false information about the virus, especially on social media. During the pandemic social media gained special interest as it went on to become an important medium of communication. This made the information being relayed on these platforms especially critical. In our work, we aim to explore the percentage of fake news being spread on Twitter as well as measure the sentiment of the public at the same time. We further study how the sentiment of fear is present among the public. In addition to that we compare the rate of spread of the virus per day with the rate of spread of fake news on Twitter. Our study is useful in establishing the role of Twitter, and social media, during a crisis, and more specifically during crisis management.


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