Spread of sars and war-related rumors through new media in china

Ringo Ma*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Current literature suggests that, as a form of communication, rumor is a story or statement circulated without confirmation. Rumors emerge under conditions marked by a combination of uncertainty, involvement, anxiety, and credulity, and may circulate by word-of-mouth or various media. The SARS- and war-related rumors in China in 2003 have stimulated new thoughts to the existing theories of rumor. The spread of the rumors was due to a unique combination of Chinese culture and society, the media environment in China, and conditions conducive to generating rumors. New media played a significant role in disseminating information with high efficiency and facilitating free flow of information.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)376-391
Number of pages16
JournalCommunication Quarterly
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Communication

User-Defined Keywords

  • Chinese communication
  • Chinese culture
  • Internet
  • New media
  • Rumor
  • Sars
  • Sms


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