How to navigate covid news without running

But because it is a new disease, scientists and public health authorities have known in real time — and for more than a year and a half, knowledge of important topics such as stability— on of resistance and high covid continues to function. Scientists are always looking for answers at the same time in public, but that is not always clear to ordinary people, who can expect quick and authoritative information.

“One of the things [public health authorities] We don’t have to do that we need to see the continuation of the real talk about uncertainty, ”said Renée DiResta, director of technical research at the Stanford Internet Observatory.

The lack of clarity-and sometimes contradiction-in public health messages can filter out as far as the press and create a void where misleading or unproven information can be corrupted and spread, he said. DiResta.

“The void to be filled by anyone with an opinion,” he added.

All these conflicting messages, combined with the reality of the slow timelines of science, can exacerbate mistrust. Instead of seeing changes in official guidance as indicators that health authorities are responding to new data responsibly, it is easy for the public to believe that those authorities and media are also at fault-for example, if the CDC changed the mask standards. Political activists use distrust. Fun news headlines and misleading tweets through reputable news outlets, or predictions by underage journalists, can also be explained by the “gotcha” memes used by hyperpartisan influencers to further erode media trust.

“Entities like Newsmax will use any opportunity to find an erroneous or altered fact from a CNN broadcast,” DiResta said.

Public health officials (and the journalists who cover what officials say and do) need a better system to say what we don’t already know and clarify that instruction may change based on new information. DiResta argues for a Like the Wikipedia method in public health, where the evolution of scientific information and debate is public and transparent, and many experts can contribute what they know. “It’s not going to go back to the old ways, where they made some determinations in some back rooms and showed a unified consensus of a trustworthy public,” he said. “That model is over.”

“If journalists spend less time on this day-to-day, hassle-free, and more time developing complex and nuanced stories, we can do a much greater public service.”

Erika Check Hayden, UC Santa Cruz

We’ve already seen that kind of scientific repetitive play on social media between researchers, public health experts, and doctors. Erika Check Hayden, a science journalist and director of the science communications program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, says journalists should remember to do their due diligence to increase access to scientific examination.

“It can be information, from a reporter’s point of view, if you understand [how experts] Done what is happening, ”he said. “What doesn’t help is if you face that at any time and describe it as a kind of conclusion.”

That’s good advice for the average reader as well.

Focus on what works best

So how do you find reliable news that feels relevant to your life? One option is to keep the sources, especially locals, not exclusively targeting blow-by-blow coverage. Reporting in the context of the daily numbers you find is much more helpful than an endless series of stories that just start with top-line data.

South Side Weekly—A Chicago -based nonprofit newspaper – offers a model for diversity. The Weekly covers the South Side of Chicago, a mostly non -white area. Most volunteer newspapers do ChiVaxBot, an automated Twitter account that shares two maps simultaneously each day: covid-19 vaccination rates by zip code and covid-19 mortality rates by zip code. Instead of displaying a snapshot of data in a day, daily updates display a pattern over time. Due to constant, slow tracking, the bot sounds the alarm over vaccine disparities: Black and Latino areas show high mortality but short vaccination rates, a situation that continues to this day.

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