The Role of Beliefs and Behavior on Facebook: A Semiotic Approach to Algorithms, Fake News, and Transmedia Journalism

Priscila Monteiro Borges, Renira Rampazzo Gambarato


This article discusses, from a Peircean semiotic perspective, (1) the logic of algorithms employed by Facebook to foster audience engagement as it relates to the spreadability of fake news in the context of transmedia journalism, and (2) how our own methods of fixation of beliefs influence this process. The methodological approach encompasses a qualitative conceptual study of Peircean semiotics, focusing on concepts such as truth, reality, representation, fixation of beliefs, and collateral experiences, as a proposition to investigate the relationship between algorithms, fake news, and transmedia journalism. The research findings point to the fact that social media networks such as Facebook have their share of responsibility in the current fake news furor, but audiences are also involved in this issue as their behavior and beliefs play an important role in feeding Facebook’s algorithms.


algorithms, Facebook, fake news, fixation of beliefs, Peircean semiotics, transmedia journalism

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