Coronavirus: False information spread on social media threatens democratic governance

Preposterous claims about the coronavirus are flying across the internet as Twitter, Google and Facebook work to eliminate as much as they can, but their efforts are falling short against the onslaught. The false information has people panicking, seeking magical cures and entertaining conspiracy theories. It takes a few days to take down the false stories, too late to prevent widespread dissemination. (The New York Times, March 8, 2020, by Sheera Frenkel, Davey Alba and Raymond Zong)

The State Department blames Russia for using social media sites to spread false information about the coronavirus. The Russians responsible were using Russian state proxy websites, state-owned media and the fakes accounts to create unrest and disruption to serve Russian objectives and undermine democracies throughout the world. (The Washington Post, March 5, 2020, by Tony Romm)

For related FAC coverage, click here, here and here.

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