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A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center
SciCheck’s COVID-19/Vaccination Project

What We’ve Learned About So-Called ‘Lockdowns’ and the COVID-19 Pandemic

What We’ve Learned About So-Called ‘Lockdowns’ and the COVID-19 Pandemic

Plenty of peer-reviewed studies have found government restrictions early in the pandemic, such as business closures and physical distancing measures, reduced COVID-19 cases and/or mortality, compared with what would have happened without those measures. But conservative news outlets and commentators have seized on a much-criticized, unpublished working paper that concluded “lockdowns” had only a small impact on mortality as definitive evidence the restrictions don’t work.

Ted Nugent Posts Fake Headline, Claim About Sotomayor’s Health

Ted Nugent Posts Fake Headline, Claim About Sotomayor’s Health

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who as a diabetic is at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, has participated remotely in recent Supreme Court arguments. But Ted Nugent posted a bogus headline on Facebook — using a CNBC logo and byline — with the unfounded claim that Sotomayor tested positive for the disease. A CNBC spokesperson said the outlet didn’t publish it.

DeSantis, Social Media Posts Mislead on COVID-19’s Toll in Florida

DeSantis, Social Media Posts Mislead on COVID-19’s Toll in Florida

Florida’s total COVID-19 case rate is higher than the national rate and 10th highest in the U.S. But social media posts and the state’s governor point to a recent decline in daily cases as evidence of Florida’s success in handling COVID-19, while ignoring the full impact of the pandemic’s toll on the state.

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.