“Fake News” on social media has become so lucrative, trendy, and powerful, it is now more popular than the “real” news.
The reason for this is pretty simple. The human brain sees people through its own personal lens. In other words, we don’t see people as they are, we only see them as we are. It is for this reason that your brain is in all probability on a quest. Your brain is looking for itself.
When we read news stories that support our biases, our brains go into auto pilot. The lure becomes so powerful, you will actually make a conscious effort “not” to check its reality out of fear your ideas are not in solidarity with the real world.
It’s called click bait. The brain clicks on social media links that support its emotional influences. This is how many scoundrels are making a lot of money. When you click, they get paid. When you share, they get paid more. They are betting on your “Affective Primacy.”
The Affective Primacy Theory, postulated by Robert Zajonc, is the phenomenon of feeling (and reacting) before appraising and evaluating a situation. This is a commonplace and normal reaction when dealing with a sudden and unexpected stimulus such as a news feed.
So next time you get overwhelmed and excited about your favorite person to hate because they supposedly said or did something that supports your biased ideas, just know the people you are “actually” supporting are much more malevolent than your favorite enemy.