Tackling disinformation: Finding alternative roadmaps for Europe to follow

Research Paper by Özge Çakır-Somlyai



Rapid spread of disinformation caught Europe off guard. But the EU is a strong and has the capacity to cope with its damaging effects on democracy.

Our current (dis)information ecosystem is neither a product of coincidence nor it occurred by a fluke. But we were not ready to face such polarised and uncertain information when it hit hard. We are still in the adaptation process, looking for ways to tackle disinformation while trying to gain our trust back for the democratic institutions. The European Union is a strong and reliable umbrella organization. It has the capacity to offer further international cooperation and strengthen global attempts to cope with disinformation. Discourse matters. “Waging war’ against disinformation instead of ‘tackling’ it does not serve the Union’s normative values. However significant it is to be aware of coordinated attempts of spreading disinformation from Russia and China, the EU needs to keep an open eye for the rise of ‘illiberal democracy’ discourse inside the Union. It should also take action against the rising authoritarianism and disinformation threat at its elbow before late.


About the author

Özge Çakır Somlyai is a second-year PhD student at Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) in Budapest. She is awarded Stipendium Hungaricum scholarship to study for doctorate in Hungary. Her research focuses on the rise of alternative/new news media in Hungary and Turkey in the last decade. For the 2022-23 academic year autumn semester, she is assisting her supervisor, Dr. Gábor Polyák, in teaching Media Economics course offered for graduate students at ELTE.

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