Modified 24 May 2023 at 07:54 GMT
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sparked a hilarious online reaction after releasing a public notice about the spread of misinformation. On May 22, the federal agency released a 35-second video with a voice-over explaining how misinformation spreads faster than facts.
The voiceover says:
“Are you prepared? The internet will be down later this week! It’s going crazy. The real truth, the government refuses to tell you. Previous account banned for telling the truth. Wait a minute, that’s misinformation. You may be unintentionally spreading misinformation. Confirm the source’s credibility before contributing to the conversation.”
The video concludes by urging users to check the federal agency’s rumor control page to see how the organization is fighting misinformation.
However, the agency’s efforts did not go down well with several netizens who criticized the video. One of them commented:
@US_FDA YOU are the spreader of misinformation. We will NEVER trust you again! Twitter Responds to FDA’s Misinformation Announcement
After the FDA’s PSA went viral about spreading misinformation, Twitter poked fun at the video. Several users criticized the federal agency for releasing the video for spreading misinformation while they themselves were spreading false information about Covid-19 vaccines.
Others urged users not to listen to the FDA, deeming it the biggest “purveyor” of misinformation.
@US_FDA You mean misinformation like “Covid vaccines will stop the spread of Covid”?
Yes, that was a real problem.
@US_FDA For the record, the biggest disinformation of the 21st century yet is ‘safe and effective’ @US_FDA Oh my god you’re so [email protected]_FDA Then why are you the biggest source of misinformation? You have a HUGE problem with YOUR OWN LIES AND INFORMATION! Where to start!
YOUR FAULTS: Vax stops transmitting, masks work, everyone MUST be vaccinated, vaccinate children, the VAX IS SAFE!
It’s not even a vaccine, you liars!
@US_FDA Yes we can, ignoring [email protected]_FDA and @CDCgov as the government is the largest purveyor of misinformation, right behind the mainstream media whose primary role is to provide consent. All professional liars. Independent media has no obligation to advertisers and [email protected]_FDA If no one listens to the FDA, CDC, NIH and WHO, that would be by far the biggest step in stopping misinformation, disinformation and misinformation about Covid-19. Screenshot of a Twitter user poking fun at the FDA’s video spreading misinformation. (Photo via @US_FDA/Twitter) The FDA said misinformation about health issues is leading to shorter life expectancies for US citizens
In an interview with CNBC published in April 2023, FDA Commissioner Robert Califf claimed that the spread of health-related messages has contributed to a shorter life expectancy for United States citizens.
In the interview, Califf said the rise in disinformation caused by the coronavirus pandemic and rising political tensions are two reasons the average life expectancy in the US is shorter than in other high-income countries.
The transmission of false information, he said, “disturbed him greatly,” adding that the US was practically in “last place” compared to other First World countries.
“It’s not evenly distributed, we have what I call the inequalities that we’ve known for a long time.” [But] The big new issue, which we think is emerging on a large scale, is the status of rural areas. The health of people in rural areas is significantly worse. Why don’t we use medical products as effectively and efficiently as our comparison countries? A lot of this has to do with choices people make based on things that have influenced their thinking.”
He claims the disinformation goes beyond COVID-19 to include health issues like cardiovascular disease. He claims that now that everyone is connected to the internet, disinformation could reach a wider audience, which could lead others to be more careful about their healthcare.
“Things are looking worse rather than better in recent years.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, life expectancy in the United States fell for the second consecutive year in 2021, falling from 77.0 to 76.1 years.
The Daily Mail reports that America’s life expectancy is now the lowest among the G7 countries and not even among the world’s top 50.
The average life expectancy in the United States is about 77 years, while in the UK it is 80 years. The average life expectancy in Japan is 84 years.
Data estimates that every 25th five-year-old in America will not reach their 40th birthday.