Facebook Bans All Anti-Vaxx Misinformation And Will Take Down Posts Claiming Vaccines Cause Autism
Facebook is going to ban posts containing misinformation about vaccines in the wake of people claiming that it can cause autism.
Now, as the vaccine is being rolled out across the world, Facebook is clamping down on misinformation surrounding it.
Some of the incorrect claims Facebook say have been shared on the platform include: that COVID-19 is man-made or manufactured; vaccines are not effective at preventing the disease they are meant to protect against; it’s safer to get the disease than to get the vaccine and that vaccines are toxic, dangerous or cause autism.
In light of this, Facebook issued a statement yesterday, February 8, explaining its plans on removing false claims, such as these, from the platform.
It read, ‘Today, we are expanding our efforts to remove false claims on Facebook and Instagram about COVID-19, COVID-19 vaccines and vaccines in general during the pandemic. Since December, we’ve removed false claims about COVID-19 vaccines that have been debunked by public health experts.’
Today, following consultations with leading health organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), we are expanding the list of false claims we will remove to include additional debunked claims about the coronavirus and vaccines.
Facebook added that these new policy will ‘help [them] continue to take aggressive action against misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines’ and that changes will be enforced immediately.
The statement explained, ‘We will begin enforcing this policy immediately, with a particular focus on Pages, groups and accounts that violate these rules, and we’ll continue to expand our enforcement over the coming weeks. Groups, Pages and accounts on Facebook and Instagram that repeatedly share these debunked claims may be removed altogether.’
Other ways Facebook will be enforcing its new policy is by enquiring some admins for groups with admins or members who have violated our COVID-19 policies to temporarily approve all posts within their group and by continuing to improve search results on the platform by promoting relevant, authoritative results if people search for COVID-19 or vaccine content.
The move will be applauded by many as, almost a year into the pandemic, healthcare experts are still having to debunk conspiracy theories surrounding the virus.
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