Coronavirus Misinformation, Scams And Bias Run Rampant Online
The ongoing global pandemic has provoked an onslaught of misinformation, fraudulent behavior, conspiracy theories and anti-Asian rhetoric.
In a time of hyper vigilance, fear and uncertainty can make people particularly susceptible to believing, sharing and even acting on false facts. Widely shared falsehoods can be detrimental to individuals' health and finances, as well as overall public health outcomes.
Racism against Asian Americans has increased during the outbreak of the coronavirus, which was first detected in Wuhan, China, in late December. President Trump and other senior politicians and officials have consistently called it the "Chinese virus."
How have misleading statements and stories led to anti-Asian bias in the real world? What's being done to temper discrimination against Americans of Asian descent and curb the spread of racist rhetoric online?
How are officials working to contain the spread of misinformation about the coronavirus and its related disease COVID-19? What can you do to be a better steward of information you read on the Internet?
- John Bash, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas
- Jevin West, associate professor in the Information School and director of the Center for an Informed Public at the University of Washington; co-author of the forthcoming book “Calling Bullshit: The Art of Skepticism in a Data-Driven World”
- Cheryl Drazin, vice president of the Anti-Defamation League's Central Division
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*This interview was recorded on Tuesday, March 31.