COVID19 misinformation

  1. “We’re not just fighting an epidemic; we’re fighting an infodemic.”
, Director-General of the World Health Organization

“There are so much misinformation and fake news about COVID19 on social media” (Song, Elisa. “Coronavirus (COVID-19): What a Pediatrician Wants You to Know.” Integrative Medicine, vol. 19, no. 2, InnoVision Health Media, Inc., Apr. 2020, p. 28.). We have seen how damaging that is when we saw the Social Dilemma. This is so much so that the fake news is called an Infodemic.

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I actually like the curfew, the masks and going shopping by yourself! These should stay Reposted from @juliettepowerauthor We ARE NOT IN THIS TOGETHER. I refuse to participate in government and media lies and manipulation by proven liars. I will not live through lies and tyrannical politicians (you may have noticed. 😂) Nup. Nah. No way José. Ain't doing it! 🤣 Prior to March 2020 I steered away from posting political or controversial content. 2020 pushed me, as it has many others. We have a choice: accept Gov and pharmaceutical marketing spin, or call it out. Thier lies shine brightly for anyone to see. If they choose to. The image is by @chriskirckof His words reflect how I feel. Good work Chris. How do you feel about 2020? #corona #charade #circus #campaign #covid #cult #hoax #scam #marketing #agenda21 #salesslogans #salespitch #allinthistogether #maskup #washyourhands #staysafe #socialdistancing #slaves #tyranny #dictatorship #directives #laws #rules #lockdown #martiallaw #government #corruption #isntitobvious #melbourne #freevictoria

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These days, we are spending way too much time on social media because we are all at home. We use it to watch the news that people share online. The WHo mentions that there is so much misinformation out there about a cure.

People online say that COVID is a hoax and encourages others not to wear face masks and go about our normal business. I had seen many posts before I went on a 14-day detox. These days I am still seeing them.

Pennycook (2019) says that fighting these fake news and misinformation is a challenge. And it is a challenge now that we have the pandemic going.

How can we fight this misinformation?

Stay informed by listening to actual Government advice on things. The actual Government things are on the nightly news and in the newspapers. Also, read lots of online scholarly articles and books rather than the trash you find on Facebook.

As professionals, we should stay akin to the latest developments on COVID19 and flag articles and inappropriate things.

Together we can fight this misinformation online and stop the spread of COVID.

Our September stats

We had two weeks break in the first half of the month, hence our blog stats have not been so great then. But in the second half of the month, it started to pick up as mental health challenges arose. Restrictions in Melbourne have lifted and we predict that by the end of next year 2 billion people around the world will be affected by the lockdowns and deaths that COVID 19 had.

Our stats

Our WordPress only got 2 more followers. During that month, although we were quiet on the posting front we got 282 views. Most of the time we shared stuff that was written previously. 115 viewers come from America where it is the hardest hit there.

Our Instagram didn’t do a lot as we had three weeks break from it. We had a couple of campaigns run on Instagram such as Save Hospitality and allow dine in. This got a bit of traction. The one from Platform270 got 14 likes. Dlish’s burger photo got 18 likes. The Japanese sweets got 18 likes. One of the lockdown videos got 36 views. The mental health one saying that you were fine yesterday got 41 views. Eco challenge got 48 views. Our protest one got 110 views. Nicolosi’s Pizzeria got 39 views. The body combat videos have from 30-40 views.  That means that most people are sick of the lockdowns and cannot wait to dine out again. Mental health is really important here.

Our Twitter followers have not changed by much. By the end, I got sick of it so I hadn’t really used it much. I used to go every single day but not anymore

What we hope for this month

  •  For a significant opening-up and for no more money to be lost throughout this pandemic
  • That people with mental health problems are being treated properly and are able to be seen by a mental health professional
  • That people wear masks the right way and not below the nose


August Mental health project

We are still in lockdown and have been ever since March. But lockdown has gotten worse with the introduction of Stage four restrictions. That means not going more than 5km from your home, going out for an hour and limited social contact.

Exercise during this time was very rushed for me and I was always worried about coming back within the hour and not being fined. I did go a little bit over by say five minutes and it was only by accident.

During this time we worked on the cross-stitch to help us relax from all the coronavirus worries. During that month we got the highest number of Coronavirus cases and we did not relax knowing that the mental health impacts will be in sight. Already the amount of cases is increasing and that’s not good. In Britain alone, there will be 150000 deaths due to suicide. 

Most of these will be due to COVID19. By the end of this pandemic we predict that over 2 billion people will have some sort of mental illness.

By the end of the month there were many anti lockdown protests and people were just sick and tired of being in isolation. There were also many anti maskers. At that time we still had over 100 cases. People believed that there was no end in sight.

At the end of the month, we started our 14 day isolation from social media and we had a lot of fun from it.

Social media use during COVID19

We talk about this alarming statistic of people spending too much time on social media. On average people are spending more than 2 hours a day on social media.

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The usage of social media has gone up by about 50% on average during the pandemic with people staying at home. Smart Insights say that Facebook is the most popular one with 2063 million people using it in the month of July. Youtube too has been popular. The 25-34 year olds use Instagram the most.

Image courtesy of

Our biggest concern is that people are spending way too much time on social media and brands target those on social media. As such in the Social Bakers report ads to spend a lot on Instagram and Facebook stories to target people into buying their product.

What are the effects of doing too much social media?

The effects of using too much social media are self-harm as seen in Social Dilemma.

I did the 14 day detox and it went all fine. People need to just back away from social media for a while and then they will realize that the world will not go away.

What do parents need to look out for in their kids now that they are home?

Most kids are doing homeschooling these days, so parents should monitor their progress at home. Parents should find out from kids about what they need to do for school work and when it is due.

Parents should look out for kids who are

  • Depressed
  • Spending more time on social media rather than their schoolwork
  • Anxious
  • Wanting to harm themselves
  • Withdrawn from the family dinner table. I.e checking their phone rather than eating dinner as a family. Dinner time is family time and this is the time where you should bond over food.

Parents should set boundaries with their kids on social media. They should also discuss some of the things that they watch on Youtube (note: Youtube is social media) and the things that they get up to on Facebook

On Facebook there are tools to help you control your child’s account. 

What is your writing process like?

I got the idea for this article from Mental Health at Home who says that we should be writing most days to combat COVID madness.

Where I write?

I write in my study where it is nice and cozy and a good place for me to work. I write on my laptop as that is easier to type and write fast. Grammarly helps with spelling errors and the like.

Do I write drafts on the go?

Yes absolutely. I write when ideas come to me from research and doing things. And then I spend a few days going over it and making sure that everything is fine before publishing it.

How often do I write?

I write mostly every day when I can. Sometimes the articles depend on the demand for information and mental health things. Right now I’m trying to adapt my blog to the COVID times. I know that there have been many deaths and infections all over the world particularly in the States.

Mental health is one of the biggest topics right now and I’m trying to find out lots about it. I signed up to the Global Wellness Institute a little while back and they send out stuff to my inbox about the latest trends.

When do I publish?

I publish when I can. There are no set timelines as to when I publish. You have to remember that COVID is an unprecedented time. We don’t know what will happen the next day or the day after or what the demand will be.

Over to you, when do you write and publish?

The social dilemma

The Social Dilemma is on Netflix and it is a compelling documentary about social media and its deep dark secrets

How much is social media wrecking our lives? Google and Facebook have few people but yet they bring in billions! They sell their user’s info. Advertisers pay for the products u use. And they are competing for your attention. How much time can they get you to spend? AI has been discussed here as well as the algorithm and your goals are different than the advertisers.

False information makes the company money. Facebook has trillion of this misinformation online. There are a lot of conspiracy theorists online

Resurrection is talked about here.

They talk about how the mind works. The psychology of how people think and how to make technology persuasive. And how to make people use the product. An unconscious habit. Eg the slaw machine in the casino.

Prototyping eg your friend tagged you in a photo. When you tag people in photos it generates advertising and hacking activity on Facebook. People can hack into your account. All these strangers are recommended by Facebook to be your friend. This is why it’s important to ask your friend’s permission before you tag them. If they tagged you, you can always remove the tag.

Emojis are another way to growth hacking. Get people to get more friends in as many days

Manipulation is another way of getting users to look at ads and respond

Vulnerability is exploited here. We cant tell whats true and what’s not. Addiction is important here. People are addicted to these things. I couldn’t get off my phone. A lot of people fall prey to these things and dings. I’m addicted to Instagram and before the 14-day iso, I used to do it a lot. I used to be addicted to it a lot

Social media is a drug. We can talk about dopamine here. It takes away a kid’s self-worth and identity. We were not evolved around what 10000 people think. It is a fake popularity. It forces you to think that I need it back. We cant eat at the dinner table without it

There has been a lot of depression and anxiety for teen girls and suicide.

We need to learn how to live with these devices. The son went without technology for a week. On the third day, he looked at the phone and released he’s being scammed. He takes it back to bed as the information algorithm. We went without it for 14 days

Politics is talked about here and discourse happens. The boy went to a protest and goes to a protest

We need regulation and law to protect everyone on social media. The companies can sell stuff but human rights need to be looked after

We can change the way these products are designed and how we make the world better. How can we make it better? The way social media is designed is not going in a flash. But we can learn to live with it. And we can learn not to be on it all the time.

Cheap ways for businesses to market their products during COVID19

Everybody’s hurting during these times. The industries that are most hurting are the ones that come into contact with most people such as your hospitality ones and health and fitness. Gone are the days of free food for all when there is an opening as businesses cannot afford to give away free food and not have customers come back. For example gyms now can’t give away free passes due to the restrictions.

Photo by Vlada Karpovich on

So what the gyms do now is to film their workouts and deliver them online for people to do at home. Most Personal trainers now have an online system to train their clients. They usually develop their own websites and write their own posts. You can do this too. I use WordPress for business and its about $400 per year. In there you have your own domain and SEO checker. SEO is search engine optimization and that’s important for businesses to be found on all types of domains.

The power of social media

During the two to three months of lockdown people have been using #savehospo on Instagram to help save the hospitality industry. People have also been using the Support Small business sticker in their stories to talk about how good that business is.

Many businesses have been doing Live Instagram TV and its worked for them. Its free and thousands of viewers have watched their posts.

Most businesses have a Facebook page which people can write good or bad things about the business. Businesses can also promote their goods there.

A lot of businesses are doing competitions where people can win stuff just by liking their page and commenting on their posts. This will hopefully encourage people to share their posts and spread the awareness.

Some of the big brand companies are doing videos and then posting them on Youtube. This way they will get a few subscribers and maybe who knows, some people in the door

Helping others

This is a time of need and many businesses should help others who are vulnerable. I’m thinking about digitally donating funds to charities like the Salvos Red Shield Appeal.

Consider selling stuff online

And using services like Afterpay. You could do this via your blog or WordPress site if you have the business plan. Or you could sell on Amazon.

Our blog stats for April

As April was the height of the coronavirus, there wasn’t as much activity on the blog compared to March where there were nearly 300 views. It is Autumn in Melbourne but not many people ventured out due to coronavirus restrictions. Moreso many people were super bored at home.

Most of the views were from the US which had the highest death rate. India was next as they too had just started the pandemic. The busiest day and time was Saturday.

April was a rather depressing month where the rates of depression increased and the numbers of calls made to Lifeline doubled. As a result there were only a couple of new followers.

As people got bored we got about 15 new followers on Instagram. Many people liked our pictures and some even responded to our posts. Our breakfast bowl with Chia got 7 likes, followed by the new runners which got 6 likes. Free pho got 5 likes. Our run in the city also got 5 likes as well as the one at Middle Child. Our Les mills body combat video got 19 views. Our RPM one got 23 views.

The video with Scomo got 49 views. It was the one where he considered places of worship a workplace. People wanted to know about the lockdowns.

April was national Autism month so the Tilly.the.bug running photo got 11 likes. My run around Ascot Vale got 9 likes. Everybody is into the running and Les Mills bug since the gyms are closed. The one about 51.4kg weight got 10 likes as people are obsessed with weight.

Lets hope that with this month we get more views and likes as people are in lockdown and are looking for happiness and recipes. And low cost living.

Social Media during the Coronavirus

People are using more and more social media to connect with the outside world. There are dating apps like Tinder and What’s App. So we wonder has social media usage gone up during the Coronavirus and what do people think about this new thing?

Photo by Tracy Le Blanc on

According to TIME people are using it to react to the strict measures that the countries have put in place. Take for instance the US. The Americans use Facebook and Twitter to facilitate conversations relating to the virus. But this sort of information can make us more anxious about what’s to come ahead.

The Listwire says that we can learn about what the other parts of the world are doing about the pandemic. Social media gives us a glimpse of what is going on, on the other side of the world.

So has the usage of social media gone up in the pandemic?

The answer is yes as we are confined to our homes. People are selling more and more of their stuff online (Yahoo Finance). People are blogging more and more and many of them are applying for IZEA’s influencer marketing program.

People are also seeing their friends online as well as doing live workouts.

So what should we do in the months ahead?

  • Use social media as a way of catching up with friends and limit the time on social media, unless you are an influencer
  • Limit your time with the Coronavirus news- this is a crazy time for people and people will get anxiety.