Viewpoint: Experts must ‘shut down’ junk science on social media before it causes real damage


[A] new study by the Pew Research Center found over two out of three Americans (68 percent) now get at least some of their news from …. Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. Yet …. a majority (57 percent) …. say they expect the news they find there to be largely inaccurate.

Today, in the midst of the Social Media Era, lies in the form of fake news can gain critical mass faster than ever, with potentially dire consequences for public policy and global health.

The prevalence of fake news on social media, and consumers’ willingness to share such stories even while mistrusting their accuracy, is ripe for exploitation by those with nefarious agendas …. [anti-vaccine activist] Robert F. Kennedy Jr., has also branched out to crusading against GMOs by helping win a preliminary $289 million jury decision against Monsanto over …. its best-selling Roundup weed killer product …. much of the argument made by Kennedy and attorneys for the plaintiff, who claimed Roundup caused his cancer, rests upon shaky science.

Related article:  Why grow GMOs? Because plants don't naturally evolve into food fit for humans

Social media outlets …. certainly have an obligation to pull fake news stories …. not to be confused with legitimate opinion pieces …. from their sites, but …. [a]t a time when it’s too easy for false information to go viral, scientists, public policy experts and political leaders must help shut down …. these claims before they can morph into actual movements and cause real damage.

Read full, original article: Social Media Is Fueling Anti-Science Agendas

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