Wednesday 18 September 2019

Facebook in move against anti-vaxxers

Public health doctors have welcomed a move by Facebook to try to combat “anti-vaxxers” who spread wrong information about vaccines on the social media site. Stock photo
Public health doctors have welcomed a move by Facebook to try to combat “anti-vaxxers” who spread wrong information about vaccines on the social media site. Stock photo
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

Public health doctors have welcomed a move by Facebook to try to combat "anti-vaxxers" who spread wrong information about vaccines on the social media site.

People searching for information or using vaccine hashtags will be shown links directing them to reputable sources, the World Health Organisation or the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

Social media sites were recently blamed by Health Minister Simon Harris for allowing their platforms to be used by people and organisations promoting ill-founded anti-vaccine propaganda.

This may lead to some concerned parents not availing of jabs to protect their children against serious diseases.

It is leading to a rise in cases of measles and mumps.

Other social media sites have already acted to counter wrong information, including YouTube, which moved earlier this year to reduce the number of videos that may be incorrect. Pinterest also said it would direct people seeking vaccine information to answers on web pages of reliable public bodies.

Irish Independent

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