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‘The Bat Soup Myth’: An Evaluation on Contemporary Myths and Urban Legends about Coronavirus
Milli Folklor ; 2020(127):59-71, 2020.
Article in Turkish | Scopus | ID: covidwho-824581
ABSTRACT
Much information has been shared on both social media and other communication channels about the virus epidemic called Covid-19, which is commonly known in Turkey as "koronavirüs". A lot of this information is based on sources and reports that should be considered “fake news” because they are simply not based on reality or facts. Information sources and reports such as these share many similarities with myths, urban legends, gossip, and rumors in terms of their structural units and fictiveness. While it may seem to most people that so far “modern man” has found technological solutions to most of the problems faced in everyday life, they still appear to turn to the familiar “primitive” attitudes when faced with unresolved “novel” problems, which have led to the rise of such false or unsubstantiated narratives we now see regarding the Coronavirus. Therefore, one can say there is a continuous production of texts about the source/origin of an unknown problem similar to creation myths or other narratives based on beliefs. Unlike the mythical era, these texts are spread globally very rapidly through social media channels. Additionally, once passed from the various media sources to the public ear, these reports become “stories” the people tell each other in daily life. And the main purpose of the narrators and listeners is to try to understand the unknown. In this context, Coronavirus is not only a subject studied by sciences, but also becomes a subject which must be analyzed by such disciplines that aim to understand human behavior, especially psychology and anthropology. When it comes to fake news and other narratives about the Coronavirus, a folklore-centered study is also imperative due to their kinship with traditional narratives. There-fore, in this study, myths, urban legends, rumors, and fake news about the virus are evaluated in terms of the motivating factor and other reasons behind the creation and emergence of the reports, the effective factors in the process of the spread of reports, and the general characteristics and functions of the reports. Accordingly, it is possible to state that the main purpose of this essay is to try to determine the origin of the urban legends about Coronavirus. In addition, another purpose of the present study is to discuss the reasons why these legends spread and gained awareness in a very short time. The legends analyzed in this study were compiled through a field research. However, the classical methods were not used in this field-work;instead, a new compilation method was carried out on the internet, the main medium where these legends are spread, in 2020 March, April and May. For this;Google Trends, Twitter Trend Topics and hashtags and Facebook hashtags have been used. Based on this survey, the most shared and "believed" urban legends about Coronavirus were determined as samples of this study, and various rumors and gossips emerged during this process were also used to support this sample. © 2020, Milli Folklor Dergisi. All rights reserved.
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Collection: Databases of international organizations Database: Scopus Type of study: Experimental Studies / Observational study / Qualitative research Language: Turkish Journal: Milli Folklor Year: 2020 Document Type: Article

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Collection: Databases of international organizations Database: Scopus Type of study: Experimental Studies / Observational study / Qualitative research Language: Turkish Journal: Milli Folklor Year: 2020 Document Type: Article