Guest essay by Eric Worrall
h/t Breitbart; Facebook has agreed to comply with Chinese health authority requests to delete “misinformation” about the Corona Virus outbreak.
Facebook to remove coronavirus misinformation after WHO declares global emergency
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Facebook Inc said on Thursday it will take down misinformation about China’s fast-spreading coronavirus in a rare departure from its approach to health content, after the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a global health emergency.
The world’s biggest social network said in a blog post that it would remove content about the virus “with false claims or conspiracy theories that have been flagged by leading global health organizations and local health authorities,” saying such content would violate its ban on misinformation leading to “physical harm.”
…Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-health-facebook/facebook-to-remove-coronavirus-misinformation-after-who-declares-global-emergency-idUSKBN1ZU0X7
This kind of heavy handed censorship is the main reason nobody trusts the Chinese Government to tell the truth. Facebook allowing the Chinese government to control Facebook content will not stop the rumours spreading, with the TOR network and plain old telephone calls, there is no longer a way to stop the flow of information and rumours other than to shut down everything – and shutting down all communication would send its own message.
Are there plenty of lies flying about regarding the Corona Virus? Almost certainly. Could some of the lies lead to harm? Very likely. But I suspect the Chinese Government is doing its own share of lying, just as they allegedly lied and attempted to cover up the severity of the SARS outbreak.
In the Information Age, the way to respond to wild rumours is to answer them, to provide evidence the rumours are untrue, to invite trusted third parties to corroborate official statements, not to try to silence critics. Unless the official statements are lies, in which case this is not an option.
Facebook accepting direction from Chinese censors just means people have no reason to trust Facebook.