Facebook has reported that some users on its platform are spreading “vaccine-hesitant” beliefs, leading to doubt or discouragement regarding getting vaccine shots. According to the World Health Organization, such discussions hinder the progress of the eradication of vaccine-preventable diseases.
Facebook has already taken important steps to ensure reduced misinformation about vaccines by introducing bans on misleading vaccine related ads, notifying users if they had interacted with a post containing false information, and promoting reliable information about COVID-19 vaccines. The social media company also announced that it would start removing false claims about the vaccines.
The way that misinformation spreads on social media is, however, a little tricky. For instance, discussions about side effects of the vaccine can be helpful for people to understand the vaccine’s impact, but at the same time result in resistance to taking the vaccine at all.
Another interesting finding that Facebook has obtained through its research is that the user communities who are involved in spreading false information and skeptic remarks about the COVID-19 vaccine overlap with the QAnon users.
A Facebook spokesperson revealed that the company is connected with more than 60 health experts around the world to keep itself informed and updated about important information related to the COVID-19 vaccine, so it can better update its policies and improve its products.
Facebook has also launched a global campaign that has connected 2 billion people to authentic information from health experts, which will also account for the eradication of false claims about the virus and vaccines.