Social media has been instrumental in the dissemination of information regarding the ongoing pandemic. Recognizing its role in ensuring its users are safe from fake news, Facebook announced that it had derailed an anti-vaccine campaign that harassed medical workers, journalists, and elected officials, in a signal of the ongoing pressure from coronavirus pandemic-tied misinformation.
As per Yahoo, the social media juggernaut has already taken down accounts in France and Italy that were linked to a conspiracy movement called “V_V”, which flooded pro-vaccine posts with potentially tens of thousands of comments.
Meta also explained that “V-V” supporters also “mass-harassed” people on YouTube, Twitter, VKontakte, and other online platforms, using swastikas or other images as well as calling doctors and media workers “Nazi supporters” for supporting vaccines.
Meta made this announcement after accusations were made about how the company puts profit over user safety. This is why the company is doubling down on its misinformation and harassment counterefforts.
“While we aren’t banning all V_V content, we’re continuing to monitor the situation and will take action if we find additional violations,” Meta said.
Meta also reported taking down a “sprawling and unsuccessful” network out of China that used fake accounts to promote a fake claim that a Swiss biologist contended the United States was putting pressure on World Health Organization scientists to blame China for the pandemic. Investigators on the Meta security team equated the campaign to a “hall of mirrors, endlessly reflecting a single fake persona” with even Chinese state media citing the fabricated claim.
Since the start of the pandemic, a lot of misinformation and fake news have circulated on social media, causing a lot of confusion and worry among people worldwide. While everyone should be responsible enough to investigate whether the information found online is correct or not, it’s only right that social media giants such as Meta do their part as well.
Art Macky Arquilla