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SciCheck’s COVID-19/Vaccination Project

Social Media Posts Mislead on COVID-19 Vaccines, Deaths in Afghanistan

Social Media Posts Mislead on COVID-19 Vaccines, Deaths in Afghanistan

Afghanistan has implemented a COVID-19 vaccination program and, although administration of vaccines has slowed due to internal armed conflicts, the program is still underway. But some prominent conservative purveyors of misinformation in the U.S. have made false claims about vaccination efforts and the impact of the pandemic in Afghanistan.

Chiropractor Again Peddles False, Misleading COVID-19 Claims

Chiropractor Again Peddles False, Misleading COVID-19 Claims

The delta variant of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is more transmissible than previous forms of the virus, and has helped spur an increase in cases, including in children. But a chiropractor in a Facebook video wrongly claims that “it is not showing more of a problem.” That’s one of several misleading and false claims he makes about COVID-19.

Misinformation About Face Masks

Misinformation About Face Masks

A growing body of evidence supports the use of masks to slow the spread of COVID-19. But the effectiveness of masks is now being challenged again. Here we summarize some of our work over the past 16 months, based on categories of misinformation about masking.

Indiana Doctor Piles On Bogus COVID-19 Claims in Viral Video

Indiana Doctor Piles On Bogus COVID-19 Claims in Viral Video

In a viral video, an Indiana physician baselessly claimed that the COVID-19 vaccines, which have been shown to be safe and effective, “fight the virus wrong and let the virus become worse than it would with native infection.” He also incorrectly said no vaccine prevents infection and contended that people previously infected with COVID-19 do not benefit from vaccination, despite studies that suggest otherwise.

Beds for Olympic Athletes Were Not Designed for COVID-19 Concerns

Beds for Olympic Athletes Were Not Designed for COVID-19 Concerns

Participants in the 2020 Olympic Games will be subject to many COVID-19 rules. But social media posts and a news report falsely claim athletes will be sleeping on specially made, flimsy “anti-sex beds” to prevent intimacy and COVID-19 infection. The beds were designed before the pandemic and can bear more than 400 pounds, the mattress company said.

Post Misleads on Japan’s Policy for Donating Blood After COVID-19 Vaccination

Post Misleads on Japan’s Policy for Donating Blood After COVID-19 Vaccination

Japan only recently adopted guidelines for accepting blood donations from those who have received COVID-19 vaccines. The guidelines are intended to give donors time to get over any side effects from the vaccine. Without providing that context, a social media post misleadingly claims Japan is “refusing” blood donations from vaccinated people.

Stories Falsely Cite ‘Stanford Study’ to Misinform on Face Masks

Stories Falsely Cite ‘Stanford Study’ to Misinform on Face Masks

Stanford Medicine says it “strongly supports the use of face masks to control the spread of COVID-19.” Yet viral stories falsely claim a “Stanford study” showed that face masks are unsafe and ineffective against COVID-19. The paper is a hypothesis, not a study, from someone with no current affiliation with Stanford. Update: The paper was retracted.

Tucker Carlson Misleads on COVID-19 Vaccines, Masks

Tucker Carlson Misleads on COVID-19 Vaccines, Masks

All of the authorized COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing symptomatic disease. Yet Fox News host Tucker Carlson baselessly casts doubt on the effectiveness of the vaccines, because federal officials urge fully vaccinated people to wear masks in public settings. 

Posts Distort CDC Study Supporting Mask Mandates to Reduce COVID-19

Posts Distort CDC Study Supporting Mask Mandates to Reduce COVID-19

A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that state-issued mask mandates were associated with significant decreases in daily COVID-19 case and death growth rates. Yet some conservative outlets and social media users falsely claim the study shows mask mandates have a negligible impact on COVID-19 outcomes.