News

No way! Study suggests Donald Trump told lies on purpose

Psychologists have studied tweets posted by Donald Trump to find out if he was purposely spreading misinformation on Twitter.

A group of linguistics experts have rounded up all of Donald Trumps tweets that were flagged for including false information.

Now prepare to be shooketh, because they found that the former US President was not accidentally posting complete lies on a daily basis.

Donald Trump
Credit: Butch Dill/AP

Their results suggested that Trump was well aware that he was spreading #fakenews, due to phrasing patterns that popped up every time he was allegedly lying.

Linguists are generally happy to agree that peoples’ language patterns change when they’re lying. Various past studies have proven that this is true.

According to that research, when people are lying they often use less sensory-perceptual words and fewer first-person pronouns.

Researchers gathered every tweet posted by Trump’s official account from between November 2017 and January 2018, and February 2018 to April 2018. They then removed all the retweets, and any posts that were just website links.

Of the 953 tweets included in the study, more that 250 of them included false information – that’s over a quarter of the sample.

When the samples were analysed, the linguists uncovered some pretty convincing results.

The tweets flagged for false information contained less first-person pronouns, used less confident language, and higher word counts (probably a result of babbling on about topics he knew nothing about).

Lead researcher Sophie van der Zee told PsyPost, “The majority of fact-checked incorrect statements by ex-President Trump were probably not told by accident.”

Van der Zee admits that some of the tweets may not have been written by Donald Trump himself, but still, the results aren’t entirely surprising.

After all, this is the same man who claimed he was once named Michigan’s Man of the Year, despite the fact that he has never even lived in Michigan – and that’s not even close to being the worst of his lies.