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The 2 Vicious Viruses We Must Defeat

We're fighting COVID19 & disinformation. We must push government & social media to defeat them both.

I’ve been a fan of animated science explainers since “Hemo the Magnificent*” so of COURSE I was going to love this explainer video by Dr. MarkAlain Dery, an infectious disease physician, and Dr. Eric Griggs, a community health specialist. Watch as they journey inside the human body to explain COVID-19 vaccines!

Dr. MarkAlain Dery, an infectious disease physician, and Dr. Eric Griggs, a community health specialist journey inside the human body to explain COVID-19 vaccines! Image from: NoiseFilter

It has the whole Fantastic Voyage “tiny humans in a body” action which I love. It gives visuals for people to lock onto to understand what is happening with the MRNA vaccines. If you want more details watch him on the Majority Report. He answers a lot of questions about what is happening with the vaccines and discusses why we might be needing booster shots.
Image from: NoiseFilter

I’m a huge fan of Dr. Dery because he talks about the science behind viral epidemics and ALSO how society responds to them.

Image from: NoiseFilter

To get the message out about an effective response to COVID we need to do more than just tell people the truth. We must understand where people get their information from and figure out how to reach different audiences with different concerns.

(Dr. Dery @thedrdery mentioned he is working on a book on the history of discrimination in medicine. We need to understand how racism, misogyny, trans and homo phobia in medicine impacts our responses so we can address them.)

People and organizations are actively working to confuse people about vaccines.

The Government is hesitant to crack down of dangerous misinformation. Asking social media organizations to do this is a problem since they generate revenue through siloed sharing of any type of information.

The government likes to fund positive actions and using gimmicks like vaccination lotteries which are apparently very successful.
(Ohio hits highest vaccination rate in weeks after offering $1m lottery prize)
I happily support those efforts, but the government also needs to bust people for spreading disinformation. R
There are already laws on the books that can stop this disinfo. Social media companies have Terms Of Service that need to be enforced. On that front I suggest you listen to this GREAT interview with Imran Ahmed, the CEO, of the Center for Countering Digital Hate on Matt Binder’s Doomed Podcast.

I learned about @imi_ahmed and @CCDHate back in March when they exposed the 12 people behind vaccine disinformation (The Disinformation Dozen. PDF link)
He explained how they profited from it and how to stop them. If you want to hear the short version, listen to NPR, which finally got around to talking to him May 7th,

YSK Matt Binder is months ahead of all media on stories like this. I was on his show in April Hit ‘Em Where It Hurts: How to Defund the Right (w/ Spocko) explaining how the Spocko Method cost right wing media 100’s of millions in lost ad revenue and how to use it today. Multiple independent listeners said it was informative, funny and riveting.)

Hemo the Magnificent* was the second of nine Bell Lab videos produced in the late 1950’s. Four of them, including Hemo, were written and directed by Frank Capra. I recently rewatched it. I'd forgotten that Hemo was a pompous jerk! You might recognize the voice of Mel Blanc in the video. The cast included many great voice over artists like June Foray, Marvin Miller and Sterling Holloway. The film had a huge impact on me, I can still quote lines from Hemo to this day. For example, the two words that represent the true meaning of blood? "Sea water."

Today we are winning the fight against the COVID virus with the vaccine, but people are deliberately infecting others with vaccine disinformation for profit & power--and it's working. We may not need an "Operation Warp Speed" to defeat them, but we do need a concentrated effort from both the government and the private sector.

Image from: NoiseFilter

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