Facebook and others doing ‘not nearly enough’ to stop COVID misinformation, surgeon general says

U.S. Surgeon Normal Dr. Vivek Murthy once more criticized the function of social media in spreading COVID-19 misinformation Sunday, a day after Fb Inc. quietly launched a delayed report on its top-performing hyperlinks.

“The pace, scale and class with which [misinformation] is spreading and impacting our well being is basically unprecedented,” Murthy stated Sunday morning throughout an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “And it’s taking place largely, partially, aided and abetted by social-media platforms.”

Whereas acknowledging that some steps have been taken by social-media firms to crack down on the unfold of misinformation, Murthy stated “it’s not almost sufficient.”

“There are people who find themselves superspreaders of misinformation,” he stated. “And there are algorithms, nonetheless, which proceed to serve up an increasing number of misinformation to individuals who encounter it the primary time. These are issues that firms can and should change. And I feel they’ve an ethical accountability to take action rapidly and transparently.”

Murthy cited a web based fable that spurred the Meals and Drug Administration to tweet Saturday that individuals shouldn’t use a drug supposed for livestock as a remedy or to stop COVID-19. The drug ivermectin will be poisonous to people, and Murthy stated its use highlights “the profound price of well being misinformation.”

Murthy’s feedback got here hours after a Saturday-night news dump by Fb
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which launched its delayed first-quarter “content transparency report.” On Friday, the New York Times reported the findings had been shelved earlier this 12 months after Fb executives feared it could make the corporate look unhealthy. Among the many Fb report’s findings: Its most-viewed hyperlink between January and March was a news story a few CDC investigation into the demise of a physician who had obtained the COVID-19 vaccine two weeks earlier, and that the Epoch Instances, a newspaper that has unfold right-wing conspiracy theories, was the Nineteenth-most widespread Fb web page within the first quarter.

Whereas the news story in regards to the physician was respectable, some questioned why an article that forged doubt on the security of the vaccine and was promoted closely by anti-vaccine teams was distributed so extensively by Fb’s algorithm.

Fb had launched its second-quarter content transparency report last week. That too, drew criticism.

In a Medium blog post, Brian Boland, Fb’s former vp of product advertising and marketing, sharply criticized Fb’s report, calling the information launched “typically ineffective” and saying “this complete effort is a PR stunt.”

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/facebook-and-others-doing-not-nearly-enough-to-stop-covid-misinformation-surgeon-general-says-11629674741?rss=1&siteid=rss | Fb and others doing ‘not almost sufficient’ to cease COVID misinformation, surgeon normal says

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