Felix is a OII DPhil Student, a research assistant at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism and a Fellow at Columbia University's Tow Center. As a Leverhulme Doctoral Scholar he is researching AI in journalism and the news industry.
Felix Simon is a student on the DPhil in Information, Communication & the Social Sciences, and was previously a student on the MSc in Social Science of the Internet.
Felix M. Simon is a journalist, researcher, and doctoral student at the Oxford Internet Institute (OII) and a Knight News Innovation Fellow at Columbia University’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism. He also works as a research assistant at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (RISJ) and regularly writes and comments on technology, media, and politics for various international outlets.
As a member of the Leverhulme Doctoral Centre “Publication beyond Print”, he is currently researching the implications of AI in journalism and the news industry, jointly supervised by Prof Gina Neff and Prof Ralph Schroeder and generously funded by the Leverhulme Trust. More specifically, his research seeks to understand the structural implications of artificial intelligence for news organisations’ gatekeeping processes—the production and distribution of news—and the public arena.
Studying these questions will not only enhance our understanding of how news organisations and journalists think about, adapt to and deal with a technology that, at first glance, seems to be all about deemphasizing their role in the news; it will also inform our theories of what a future of the news could look like as the industry is battling uncertainty on several fronts. Ultimately, this project also hopes to provide answers about AI’s effect on journalism’s business models and viability as well as its wider ramifications on the public arena of news, and thus society and democracy.
Felix has published, among others, in New Media & Society, Journalism Studies, Journalism Practice, The Information Society, International Communication Gazette, International Journal of Press/Politics, the International Handbook of Internet Research and Transformative Works and Cultures and has co-authored various RISJ reports on topics ranging from innovation in the media to COVID-19 misinformation. His research has been covered, among others, in The Guardian, The Washington Post, Politico, Financial Times, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Nature, New Statesman, Business Insider, CNN, and the BBC, and he has given evidence to inquiries of the UK House of Lords and the UN.
His past and current research focus on AI in the news, political communication in the digital age, big data in politics and the entertainment industry, as well as the changing nature of journalism and the media in the 21st century. He also takes an active interest in populism and the future of mis- and disinformation.
Felix graduated with a BA in Film and Media Studies as well as English Studies (Distinction) from Goethe-University Frankfurt, and he holds an MSc in Social Science of the Internet from the OII. During his previous studies, he was funded by the renowned journalism programme of the German Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation and he is currently a fellow at the Salzburg Global Seminar. Before returning to the OII for his doctoral studies, Felix worked as a journalist, editor and researcher in London. Past work experience also includes the BBC and Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS) in London and Innsbruck.
Positions held at the OII
- DPhil student, October 2019-Present
- Teaching Assistant, Social Dynamics of the Internet, October 2019-January 2020
- Teaching Assistant, Social Dynamics of the Internet, October 2020-January 2021
- Teaching Assistant, Social Dynamics of the Internet, October 2021-Present
- Guest lecturer, Cultural Analytics course, March 2020 & 2021
Positions held elsewhere
- Research Assistant, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, March 2017-Present
- Fellow at the Salzburg Global Seminar, 2018-Present
- Knight News Innovation Fellow, Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Columbia University, March 2021-Present
- Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, October 2021-Present
Journalism, News, AI, Political communication, Media and cultural industries, Populism, Mis- & Disinformation
Supervisors at the OII
Participants: Professor Gina Neff, Felix Simon
This project will engage key stakeholders in the UK news industry in a public symposium to address urgent and pressing questions about news production in the age of AI.
Recorded: 19 May 2021
The OII is pleased to welcome Professor Deen Freelon for this webinar, hosted by DPhil candidate Felix M. Simon.
Root Systems, Land Cultivation, and Hurricanes: The Benefits and Limitations of Applying Ecological Metaphors to Information Dysfunction
Recorded: 17 February 2021
The OII welcomes Professor Whitney Phillips and Professor Ryan M. Milner, co-authors of 'You Are Here: A Field Guide for Navigating Polarized Speech, Conspiracy Theories, and Our Polluted Information Landscape' hosted by Felix M. Simon of the OII.
Recorded: 4 November 2020
This webinar describes the main consequences of the uncritical adoption of the term ‘infodemic’ in the development of rigorous science on the topic, and further argues how the uncritical adoption of it in policymaking can do more harm than good.
OII’s Wednesday Webinar Week 5 ‘Root Systems, Land Cultivation, and Hurricanes: The Benefits and Limitations of Applying Ecological Metaphors to Information Dysfunction’
17 February 2021
The OII welcomes Professor Whitney Phillips and Dr Ryan M. Milner, co-authors of 'You Are Here: A Field Guide for Navigating Polarized Speech, Conspiracy Theories, and Our Polluted Information Landscape' hosted by Felix M. Simon of the OII.
4 November 2020
Dr Chico Camargo and Felix M. Simon from the OII will discuss the term 'infodemic', and argue it's uncritical use in policy making, whilst highlighting the additional dangers of it's associated terms.
2 August 2021
Authors: Chico Camargo, Felix Simon
Are We Really Living in an ‘Infodemic’? Science Suggests a Different Story Dr Chico Q. Camargo, Research Associate, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford ...
8 October 2020
Authors: Felix Simon
One of my personal heroes and an undeniable ‘force for good’ in making the web and digital media a better place is Deen Freelon. ...
23 February 2021 Business Insider
The Fox News host Tucker Carlson stirred doubts about COVID-19 vaccines in a December edition of his show.
12 November 2020 Link
The information system has been in crisis for some time. But often there is a tendency to simplify what is instead a multiplicity of factors under labels that are too easy. The emergency has brought some knots to a head, but is also helping to clear them
Twitter did a better job than Facebook at reining in Trump’s false election posts, misinformation experts say
5 November 2020 Business Insider
Misinformation experts told Business Insider that Twitter did a better job of tackling the posts, mainly because it placed restrictions hindering other users from spreading Trump's claims.
Trump’s campaign booked out YouTube’s homepage for Election Day. YouTube won’t let that happen again — but insists it’s nothing to do with Trump
3 November 2020 Business Insider
A communications expert from the University of Oxford questioned whether Trump booking out YouTube's masthead on Election Day would actually sway any voters.
29 October 2020 European Journalism Observatory
On September 30, the New York Times covered a new report by the Cornell Alliance for Science on COVID-19 misinformation.
15 October 2020 The New Statesman
The notion that the contentious British firm played a pivotal role in the Trump and Brexit votes has become ever harder to maintain.
Easily overblown, little-understood, and dangerous: Why we need to understand political microtargeting
4 October 2020 Business Insider
The Trump campaign in 2016 used online ads to try and dissuade Black voters from voting, according to an investigation this week by UK broadcaster Channel 4.
25 August 2020 The Financial Times
The idea that we are suffering an ‘infodemic’ when it comes to coronavirus is attractive — and wrong.
27 May 2020 Nature
Analysts are tracking false rumours about COVID-19 in hopes of curbing their spread.
23 May 2020 Neue Zürcher Zeitung
The relentless change in classic journalistic business models will also accelerate in 2020 and beyond. The industry is facing difficult times. But not everything is lost - there are also new opportunities.
9 April 2020 La Repubblica
The pandemic is a huge test for the network, freedom and the growth of digital awareness. This epochal passage cannot be addressed only with governmental "task forces" that put the stamp on the sites.
9 April 2020 euronews
Nearly two-thirds of inaccurate coronavirus claims have a grain of truth in them but are twisted into something false, a study has found.
9 April 2020 BBC News
Social networks need a dedicated button to flag up bogus coronavirus-related posts, an advocacy group has said.
On Twitter, almost 60 percent of false claims about coronavirus remain online — without a warning label
8 April 2020 The Washington Post
Facebook and YouTube do better, but still leave some misinformation up.
8 April 2020 The Guardian
Study suggests mainstream news outlets struggling to compete with celebrities’ and politicians’ reach.
“Reconfigured” or purely fabricated? Coronavirus misinformation comes in multiple forms and demands multiple solutions
8 April 2020 Nieman Lab
The wide variety and diversity of information about COVID-19.
8 April 2020 The Quint
A report by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism has found that there has been a 900 percent increase in English fact-checks published between January and March 2020.
8 April 2020 Süddeutsche Zeitung
False reports about the corona virus are currently booming, they are circulating on social networks and private chat groups.
8 April 2020 Die Welt
Drinking tea, gargling chlorine bleach, swallowing vitamin C - there is currently a flood of fake news about the corona virus. Researchers have analyzed the news. This shows a disturbing pattern.
8 April 2020 Le Figaro
Almost 60% of “fake news”, however verified, continues to circulate without warning on the social network.
25 February 2020 Medium
The Internet is often declared the sole cause of radicalisation and extremism. But there are many factors contributing to both.
My research and doctoral work is currently supported by the Leverhulme Trust, Columbia University’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism, and the Minderoo-Oxford AI Governance Challenge Fund. In the preceding five years I have also worked as a research assistant or researcher on projects supported by the Deutsche Telekom Foundation, European Broadcasting Union, European Journalism Observatory, Google News Initiative, Facebook Journalism Innovation Project, and the Nuffield Foundation.
During this period, I have also engaged unpaid consultations with several organisations including the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation, the UK House of Lords, the United Nations, TUM School of Management, and Goethe-University Frankfurt.
I conduct my research in line with the University’s academic integrity code of practice.