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SciCheck’s COVID-19/Vaccination Project

SciCheck Video: How Viral Deceptions Spread

This article is available in both English and Español

In this video, SciCheck reviews a case study of how misinformation spreads online.

The video looks at how InfoWars, a conspiracy theory website, distorted the facts of an order by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that mandates face masks be worn on public transportation.

Contrary to the InfoWars report, the CDC order doesn’t require that individuals wear two masks. CDC guidance issued with the order does say that cloth masks should be made of at least two layers. But the InfoWars report was picked up — word for word, in some cases — by three other websites in two days, spreading the misinformation across the internet. 

For more information, see our article “Headlines Distort the Facts on CDC Mask Order.”

Editor’s note: SciCheck’s COVID-19/Vaccination Project is made possible by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The foundation has no control over our editorial decisions, and the views expressed in our articles do not necessarily reflect the views of the foundation. The goal of the project is to increase exposure to accurate information about COVID-19 and vaccines, while decreasing the impact of misinformation.