Canadians are concerned about the spread of ‘fake news’ but only 20 per cent of them are “very confident” that they can recognize it.
This figure appears in Canada’s Internet Factbook 2018 published by Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA).
According to the report, 74 per cent of Canadians are concerned about the spread of “fake news” online, which CIRA defines as “news stories that are fabricated, made up or grossly misrepresent actual events.” According to the report, the majority of Canadian internet users have heard of fake news and have come across it online.
But the report also finds that 20 per cent of those surveyed are “very confident” in their ability to recognize fake news. Overall, 54 per cent of users are somewhat confident in their ability to recognize fake news online.
Overall, 74 per cent of Canadians spend at least three to four hours online per day. “Once they get online, they typically spend their time using email, banking, using social media, reading the news and shopping,” it reads.
The report also reveals that 33 per cent of Canadians have experienced or witnessed cyberbullying when using the internet. This figure rises to 58 per cent among 18-34 year olds.
Almost nine out of 10 Canadians — 86 per cent — have a broadband internet connection at home, and 52 per cent have five or more internet connected devices in their homes.
But Canada as a nation continues to slip in the digital world. According to the International Telecommunications Union’s ICT Development Index measuring access, use and skills when it comes to information and communications technology, Canada ranked 29th in the world, good for second-to-last among the seven leading industrial nations. Only Italy — which finished 47th — finished worse. Canada’s remaining G7 peers — the United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, France, and the United States — finished fifth, 10th, 12th, 15th and 16th respectively.
Canada ranked 24th two years ago, slipping five spots in two years.