Episteme:1-21 (2020)

Benjamin Elzinga
Georgetown University
Following Cass Sunstein's popular treatment of the concept, echo chambers are often defined as environments which exclude contrary opinions through omission. C. Thi Nguyen contests the popular usage and defines echo chambers in terms of in-group trust and out-group distrust. In this paper, I argue for a more comprehensive treatment. While both exclusion by omission and out-group distrust help sustain echo chambers, neither defines the phenomenon. I develop a social network model of echo chambers which focuses on the role of belief-reinforcing echoes. First, I argue that the model allows us to incorporate Nguyen's main point about distrust without construing other commentators as deeply mistaken about the nature of echo chambers. Second, I use the model to develop an account of collaborative resistance and use it to clarify the role echo chambers play in spreading misinformation.
Keywords Echo Chamber  Misinformation  filter bubble  fake news  social media
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Reprint years 2020
DOI 10.1017/epi.2020.33
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References found in this work BETA

Echo Chambers and Epistemic Bubbles.C. Thi Nguyen - 2020 - Episteme 17 (2):141-161.
What is Justified Belief?Alvin Goldman - 1979 - In George Pappas (ed.), Justification and Knowledge. Boston: D. Reidel. pp. 1-25.
Conceptualizing Epistemic Oppression.Kristie Dotson - 2014 - Social Epistemology 28 (2):115-138.
Fake News and Partisan Epistemology.Regina Rini - 2017 - Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 27 (S2):43-64.
Vice Epistemology.Quassim Cassam - 2016 - The Monist 99 (2):159-180.

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Citations of this work BETA

Echoes of Covid Misinformation.Neil Levy - forthcoming - Philosophical Psychology:1-18.
The Rationality of Fundamentalist Belief.Finlay Malcolm - forthcoming - Journal of Social Philosophy.

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Echo Chambers and Epistemic Bubbles.C. Thi Nguyen - 2020 - Episteme 17 (2):141-161.
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Is Echo a Complex Adaptive System?Mark Bedau - 2000 - Evolutionary Computation 8 (4):419-442.
Narcissus and the Echo of Emptiness.Steven Laycock - 1999 - International Journal of Transpersonal Studies 18 (2):109-116.


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