UW News

March 18, 2019

Information School to welcome high school students March 19 for ‘MisInfo Day’ – from ‘Calling BS’ faculty duo

UW News

What is misinformation, and how — and why — does it spread? The University of Washington Information School is taking a leading role in helping people better navigate this era of increasing online fakery and falsehood.

On March 19, the iSchool will welcome more than 200 Seattle-area high school students for “MisInfo Day,” a daylong workshop on how to navigate the misinformation landscape from Jevin West and Carl Bergstrom, the faculty duo who created the “Calling BS in the Age of Big Data” class and website.

“MisInfo Day,” will be from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Husky Union Building’s North Ballroom.

West is an iSchool assistant professor, Bergstrom a professor of biology. Their most recent creation is WhichFaceisReal, a website that helps users learn to tell real from fake images online.

The students — many of whom are studying government — will come from Nathan Hale, Franklin, Bellevue and Toledo high schools. Discussions will include defining misinformation and why we find it so compelling as well as “tips and tricks” for determining if news reports and social media posts are legitimate

The afternoon session will be an “Ask the Experts” panel, where the students will hear professionals from the Seattle Public Library, Snopes.com and the UW about their work. The students are asked to “come with questions about misinformation, fact-checking, confirmation bias and more.”

Other faculty and staff involved are:

Bergstrom and West’s “Calling BS” work has drawn wide attention from press as well as other institutions, some of whom have already expressed interest in holding events modeled on “MisInfo Day.”


For more information, contact Maggie Foote, iSchool communications director, at 206-250-5992 or m2foote@uw.edu