Coronavirus (797) WHO: Promote facts not false information

3 July, 2020

See the new public information video from WHO. It's interesting that the video concludes with the message: 'Spend less time online'. This is a resounding recognition of the fact that simply getting people online will NOT solve the world's information problems. Far from it: connectivity gives fuel to misinformation. As we have been saying on HIFA for many years, the emphasis must shift to include better sigposting and empowerment of people to differentiate reliable information from misinformation. The suggestions in this video are a start to raise public awareness and provide a couple of pointers. But more needs to be done by social media and by all of us responsible for meeting information needs.

'Sharing unverified information during the COVID-19 pandemic can be dangerous, unhealthy, and make our life more confusing. Find out how you can help promote facts and science instead. UNESCO and the World Health Organization are calling out this Infodemic and calling on you to be on the frontline for truth. It’s easy. Watch the video for the simple actions we can all take on how to identify false information, verify trusted sources, and help ourselves and loved ones to stay safe.'

Best wishes, Neil

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HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of the HIFA global health campaign (Healthcare Information For All - ), a global community with more than 20,000 members in 180 countries, interacting on six global forums in four languages in collaboration with WHO. Twitter: @hifa_org FB: