Determinant and Consequence of Online News Authorship Verification: Blind News Consumption Creates Press Credibility
This study aims to identify the determinants and consequences of news authorship verification in the context of news aggregation sites. Checking news authorship becomes important where countless news articles produced by numerous authors are distributed and where fake news and low-quality news can prevail. Implementing structural equation modeling with our nationwide survey of around 1,000 people in South Korea, we found that the psychological motives for using news aggregators and the behavioral use of news aggregators both explain the extent of news authorship verification. News authorship verification influenced press credibility, rather than vice versa. This influence was negative, suggesting that people who are less likely to check news authorship are more likely to perceive the press as credible. This finding implies the danger of blind news consumption. News authorship verification also partially mediated the relationships between press credibility and other variables. These findings have theoretical implications for information verification and credibility research.