Facebook promised to crack down on rumors about the Covid-19
Nearly two months into the largest vaccine rollout in U.S. history, Instagram continued to prominently feature anti-vaccination accounts in its search results, while Facebook groups railing against vaccines remained easy to find.
The Better Business Bureau is alerting British Columbians that the next victim of scammers and identity thieves may be their COVID-19 vaccine pass.
For years, Facebook has grappled with tackling anti-vaxxer posts. Late last year, after promising two years earlier to limit the dissemination of anti-vaxxer material, it established new guidelines to counter COVID-19 vaccine misinformation.
There are more than 77,000 followers on the ‘cv19vaccinereactions’ account, which is dedicated to recording claims of adverse reactions to the vaccine. The account also posts false reports and indicates unproven connections between individuals obtaining the vaccine Covid-19 and significant health incidents, including a stroke or a miscarriage.
In December, Facebook announced it would delete allegations regarding coronavirus vaccinations, including false conspiracy theories that they contain microchips, that have been refuted by public health authorities. Facebook’s policy previously discouraged disinformation about Covid-19 that “contributes to the risk of imminent violence or physical harm.”
One public Facebook group, which has more than 58,000 members, is devoted to posts about alleged “vaccine accidents and reactions.” Several recent posts on the page of the group include links marked by Facebook’s independent fact checkers as “fake facts” or have a label saying “Missing Meaning. Independent fact-checkers say people may be deceived by this information.