Wednesday, February 03, 2021

Statistics Canada Report on COVID-19 Misinformation

Statistics Canada has released a report entitled Misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic:

"The COVID-19 pandemic was accompanied by an infodemic—an overabundance of information, some which is true and some which is not, which made it very difficult for people to find facts and reliable sources. Misinformation in the context of COVID-19, can endanger the population’s health, especially if the news that spreads is about false prevention measures or treatments, or if it undermines the population’s trust in health services and public or political institutions (...)"

"This article uses data from the Canadian Perspectives Survey Series (CPSS) 4: Information Sources Consulted During the Pandemic, which was conducted from July 20 to 26, 2020 among Canadians aged 15 and over living in the 10 provinces. The focus is on information found online by Canadians who used online resources to learn about COVID-19, as well as COVID-19 information sharing.  In addition, the article examines the verification methods used by Canadians to check the accuracy of information found online as well as suspected information seen online about COVID-19."

Among the findings:

  • Only one in five Canadians always checked the accuracy of online COVID-19 information, 37% saying they often check. However roughly 36% of Canadians reported that they only sometimes (24%) or rarely (12%) checked the accuracy of COVID-19 information they found online
  • Half of Canadians shared COVID-19 information they found online without knowing whether it was accurate
  • Consulting other sources was the strategy most commonly used by Canadians to verify the accuracy of information about COVID-19 found on the Internet


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posted by Michel-Adrien at 9:19 pm


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