The global web traffic is a big factor in how much the world’s governments and corporate media use fake news to spread misinformation, according to a new study.
The study, released on Wednesday, analysed the traffic of news sources on the web, with headlines such as “Obama will be in Saudi Arabia” or “President Obama will be here soon”.
The authors also looked at the sites that received the most traffic, using data from OpenLeaks, a free online platform for analysis of social media data.
The researchers found that in 2018, there were a total of 9.1 million fake news stories in the top 10 news categories.
Of those, 3.5 million were published in the US, the UK, Canada and Australia, with an average of 0.4 news articles per day.
The remaining 1.6 million articles were sourced in the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Europe.
Overall, the researchers found 1.7 million fake stories were published every day.
The authors said the number was likely to be much higher, as it reflects more than just news articles.
The authors said that the use of fake news was more widespread in 2018 than in previous years.
According to OpenLeaks’ data, about 9.3 million articles on the US-based site were fabricated and spread by US websites and social media.
That was the highest since the first year of OpenLeaks data collection, in 2019.
This year, OpenLeaks said that “fake news” accounts for 0.6% of the news stories published, compared to 0.2% in 2019 and 0.3% in 2020.
But the authors cautioned that the real number could be much more, as fake news is not limited to US sites.
In the Middle Eastern region, for example, only one article was fake in 2018 and 0 was fake last year, with a second article being published in January, the study found.
In 2018, the Middle-East region was responsible for about 8% of all fake news, followed by the North-East, Central-North-West and East-West.
In Europe, the most affected countries included Italy, Spain, France, Greece, Hungary, Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic and Romania.
The report said that, of the top news stories, the one that was most frequently published was an anti-Trump story, which has generated more than 5 million articles.
This is the first study to analyse fake news in the web traffic of individual news sites.
But this type of analysis could help identify the sources of fake stories, and help governments and corporations to combat them.