Abstract


AN INVESTIGATION OF CONSPIRACY THEORIES ON COVID-19: TURKEY’S CASE

This study aims to develop a measurement tool to investigate conspiracy theories (CT) regarding COVID-19 and to use this tool for determining their prevalence and investigating whether the tendencies to believe in CT differ by demographic variables. The study was of a descriptive research design, where the data were collected from three different study groups of 1109 participants. The analyses revealed that the measurement tool developed was a valid and reliable instrument. Findings illustrated that 71% of participants believed in at least one of the CT relating to COVID-19 and that tendencies towards believing in these theories were significantly higher in groups having a low level of education, experiencing loss of revenues, and those with a mediocre income. However, the level of believing in conspiracy theories did not significantly differ by participants’ gender and their loss of a relative due to COVID-19. Given that CT negatively affects the potential social outcomes that are particularly related to general wellbeing and mental health, preventing the uncontrolled spread of these theories is a must. Conclusions drawn from this study may help future research identify a target group for intervention or preventive activities.



Keywords

Covid-19, conspiracy theories, scale development


Reference