The coronavirus is talked about in Whats App, Twitter, Facebook, and news feeds are invaded by different information, whose sources we don’t even know. Here are five things we can do to check the content of online materials before we believe in them.
The new coronavirus, along with its “friends” – misinformation and forgery – have already reached more than 60 countries. Once he arrives in a new country, the coronavirus brings with it news and false information about the disease, how it would spread and how we could protect ourselves.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has already called the coronavirus epidemic “infodemic” because of misleading or incorrect information spreading faster than the virus. Whether it’s the charlatan doctors who propose false “leaks” or conspiracy theories used to undermine some governments,they all create a complex environment. That’s why we need to be careful what we find online and what might create a bigger panic.
Disinformation agents take advantage of this and create content that would affect us morally and that would require us to distribute it further.
Here are the five things you can do to check online content before you share it:
Let’s remember that some stories can be too beautiful and good to be real.
Fake and misleading news spreads faster because people distribute it. Lying attracts more than the truth.
- If a news story is too good to be true, too funny, too strange, it’s probably a fake. Access the source before you share it.
- You know, journalists sometimes make mistakes too – just because other news outlets share news doesn’t always mean it’s been checked.
- For more websites and tools for checking online content, see this toolkit instrumente.
Check your pictures:
An image is worth a thousand words, and when this image is intended to be misinformation, it can be worth as much as a thousand lies. Image misinformation is one of the most common types of misinformation.
Some of the most distributed photos of the fires of 2019 were unrelated, and some of the most recent maps showing the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) are misleading. In just a few clicks, you can check the images
- Desktop: We recommend the RevEye plugin to search for any image on the internet without leaving your browser.
- For your phone: If you’re outside reading a story that’s just been shared on whatsapp, twiter or anywhere, you can use TinEye..
Check your videos using InViD
Fact-checkers around the world have checked a lot of videos that falsely show symptoms or the impact of coronavirus. Several of these videos are old but republished under the legend of the coronavirus.
Before you share that video, check it so you don’t get fooled.
- Amnesty International representatives have developed a tool that allows you to automatically get thumbnails from YouTube videos, as well as other useful information.
- The InVid video verification plugin has some very effective tools for checking pictures and videos.
Remember, not all researches are independent!
Just because a news note contains an infographic or a table, does not mean that the data and scientific effort behind this research are accurate and sufficient.
So, if you encounter a graph, a table, a statistic or anything related to Covid-19, ask yourself:
- What’s the source? Where does this data come from?
- Always consult official sources that are not even related to a government.
- The WHO Coronavirus page has up-to-date statistics and recommendations.
- John Hopkins University has drawn up a map.
Use geolocation to find out where a photo or video wastaken:
One of the best tools to detect misinformation is geolocation. We can use the street signs in the photo to find the same place on a map.
- Look for clues in architecture, in people’s language; see which side of the road the cars go, company names, etc.
- Try to find the same place on the map
- this app and this..