Interesting article in The Independent:
This kind of gels with The Great Derangement, there seems to be a whole new generation of kids in the last decade who blindly accept every conspiracy theory that comes along.There are several reasons why conspiracy theories are increasing. Mainly it is because the internet has made it easy to propagate rumour and supposition on a global scale. Social networking sites allow conspiracy theorists to seek out and link with like-minded individuals. Whereas past conspiracies, like those surrounding the death of JFK, took years to formulate and disseminate, today's conspiracies develop almost organically. Immediately after 9/11, the internet was abuzz with individual voices questioning the official version of events. These nebulous ideas were able to crystallise as theorists discussed and developed their ideas and formed into a set of theories adopted by groups such as the 9/11 Truth Movement.
People interested in conspiracy also have access to vast online depositories of reference material which can be selectively edited to support an idea. Mobiles with in-built video cameras allow footage of events to be uploaded to YouTube instantly. Video sharing and easily-edited visual content has meant those interested in conspiracies are getting younger and, as such, are a more impressionable audience. Interest in conspiracy has developed into a counter-cultural youth movement.
Bartlett explains: "You still get the old-school anorak conspiracy theorist who spends a lot of time poring over journals looking for tiny anomalies. But you also have the student types who think it is cool to be anti-government, anti-US or anti-imperialist. Then you have a large number of young people from disadvantaged and minority backgrounds who haven't looked into any evidence but accept conspiracies because they hold the belief that the government is corrupt."