Reddit moderators demand platform to act against Covid misinformation
The moderators of some of Reddit’s most popular subreddits posted a open letter Calling on the company to do more to prevent the spread of medical disinformation it claims is plaguing the platform, demanding that Reddit message boards prohibit it “only exists” to spread coronavirus misinformation and undermine efforts to fight the pandemic.
A group of volunteer moderators who oversee message boards, or “subreddits,” with tens of millions of users highlighted in the letter examples of Reddit users posing as ineffective or even dangerous scientifically proven methods to stop the spread of the coronavirus, such as wearing face masks, social distancing, and vaccines.
Misinformation can be fatal in some cases, says the open letter, mentioning the bizarre practice of taking dewormers for cattle to treat symptoms of the coronavirus, which the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning versus last week after reporting “growing interest” in the drug fby humans.
The open letter says misinformation on Reddit “gains an air of legitimacy through repeat volume“And that” people are starting to believe [it] With all my heart.”
Popular captions with moderators who signed the open letter include r / aww, r / lifeprotips, r / pics, r / showerthoughts, r / tifu, and r / UpliftingNews, which each have at least 10 million subscribers, as well as hundreds of smaller communities.
Reddit did not immediately respond to a Forbes request for comment.
“Chances are, the misinformation that Reddit is currently flooding with will force people to stay in the hospital’s toxicology department or even cost them their lives. There can be no room for leniency when people die because of the disinformation on this platform, ”the open letter reads.
52 million. How much is it daily users Reddit averaged at the end of 2020, the platform said. The Wall Street Journal in December, a figure he said was a jump of 44% from the same period the year before. This was the first time Reddit has publicly disclosed the metric.
Other social media platforms that have struggled to moderate coronavirus misinformation include Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Last year, Reddit admins pledged to do more to remove misinformation from the platform and prevent it from spreading, a promise the open letter claims has led to “nothing substantial” at all. go “Quarantine” r / NoNewNormal, a subreddit dedicated to anti-mask and anti-vaccination. When a subreddit is quarantined, the bulletin board will “display a warning that requires users to register explicitlyReddit says. According to the open letter from the moderators, this is not a strong enough response, writing that the quarantine “barely reduces traffic and does little to stop the misinformation.