Surgeon General Demands Social Networks Crack Down On COVID Misinformation

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Jul 15, 2021 - 08:20 PM

As the Biden administration grapples with slowing vaccination rates and negative reactions to their so-called 'door knocking' campaign, Surgeon General Vivek Murthy on Thursday called on social media companies to censor 'misinformation' related to COVID-19 and vaccines.

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy speaking during a press briefing on Thursday at the White House. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Without providing specific examples,' Murthy blamed 'vaccine hesitancy' on misinformation - though we question whether reports such as Israel reporting an explosion in COVID-19 cases in vaccinated patients, or that 40% of current COVID patients were previously vaccinated, vs. just 1% who had natural immunity after having recovered from the disease and caught it again.

In short, the Delta variant appears particularly adept at evading currently available vaccines.

More 'not misinformation' possibly contributing to slowing vaccination rates are blood clot warnings and links to a rare neurological disorder, along with widespread reports of side-effects in the VAERS database and public forums.

For example, a random sampling of the top posts in Reddit's CovidVaccinated forum:

None of this is minsinformation, and reasonable minds should be able to agree that it's contributing to so-called 'vaccine hesitancy.'

Not so, according to the Surgeon General.

"Health misinformation is false, inaccurate or misleading information about health according to the best evidence at the time," said Murthy, adding "Misinformation takes away our freedom to make informed decisions about our health and the health of our loved ones."

The White House echoed Murthy's comments:

More via Axios:

  • "During the COVID-19 pandemic, health misinformation has led people to resist wearing masks in high-risk settings. It's led them to turndown proven treatments and to choose not to get vaccinated. This has led to avoidable illness and death," he added.
  • "Now, health misinformation didn't start with COVID-19. What's different now though is the speed and scale at which misinformation is spreading."
  • "Modern technology companies have enabled misinformation to poison our information environment with little accountability to their users."

The big picture: The surgeon general said mechanisms that platforms use to keep people scrolling — including likes, share buttons and algorithms that tailor content for specific users — have also allowed misinformation to proliferate.

  • Murthy called for an "all of society" approach to tackling misinformation, recommending community leaders to promote factual information and educators to improve health literacy.
  • He said the Biden administration expects social media platforms to operate with more transparency and accountability and to step up efforts to monitor for false information.

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Remember when Fauci told us masks don't work? ZeroHedge remembers.