Click name to view affiliation
It is unknown how lifelong digital media users such as young adult women perceive exercise information found online. A total of 141 women aged 18–30 years and residing in Canada were randomized to read either a factually incorrect or a factually correct blog article. Participants completed Go/No-Go tasks to measure automatically activated believability and evaluations and questionnaires to explicitly measure believability, affective evaluations, and intentions to exercise. Participants did not show evidence of automatically activated believability of the content found in either blog article. However, participants reading the factually correct article reported significantly greater explicit disbelief than those reading the factually incorrect article, though this did not predict intentions. Being factually correct may not be an important component of message believability. Exercise professionals need to remain aware of the content of popular online sources of information in an effort to curb misinformation.
Ori and Berry are with the Faculty of Kinesiology, Sport and Recreation, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada. Yun is with Alberta Health Services, Edmonton, AB, Canada.