Keeping Well: Fake news

2nd April 2020

Keeping Well: Fake news

We must all do our bit to ensure we aren’t inadvertently sharing hoaxes on social media and forwarding fake news in messaging apps. These can make the already stressful situation worse, and can spread unnecessary fear and panic.

Before reposting or sharing, always look the content over first. Does it link to an official or reliable source? Does it provide any real evidence of its claims? Real news will always provide evidence and sources. For the most reliable and up to date advice and information on coronavirus, we recommend going directly to the following websites:

Government advice: www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Health advice: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19
World news: www.bbc.co.uk/news/coronavirus

An example of misinformation and how it can affect us:

 

On the left is a message circulating on social media and messaging apps. It has reached people all over the world.

 

The message claims that if you’re able to hold your breath for 10 seconds, you are free from infection. This has been widely discredited by a number of health professionals and news outlets. People with mild to no symptoms may assume they are virus-free if they are able to hold their breath. However, they could still be carriers, making this example of misinformation quite dangerous.

 

Does the post include references or links to official sites? Has the information has been reported elsewhere – is it published on the above websites, or being reported on TV? Does it sound believable? If the answer to any of these questions is ‘no’, think twice before spreading the word.

 

 

 

 

Please always remain vigilant to false information. Protect your mental health and the mental health of others by not sharing unofficial or sensationalised posts.

Download this information here.