Almost as serious as the Covid-19 pandemic itself is the misinformation and related fake news that run on social networks and on digital platforms, which have contributed to the widespread panic of people looking to learn about the terrible virus. There are those who try to make money with the misfortune of others, using the platforms for this abuse.
In this sense, the major technologies and social networks have joined efforts to prevent misinformation, while at the same time providing support to efforts to combat Covid-19. We are helping millions of people stay connected while fighting fraud and misinformation about the virus, highlighting the content of authorities on our platforms, and sharing critical updates in coordination with global government health agencies, says Facebook in a statement on its website, encouraging other companies to join the fight to ensure the well-being and safety of their respective communities.
The responses were not long-awaited and Google shared a tweet signed by you, as well as by Microsoft, Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn, mentioning the same message shared by Mark Zuckerberg's company.
The companies had already taken some individual measures to combat misinformation. Facebook had already expressed its support for the World Health Organization, highlighting it as the main source to follow when it comes to information about the coronavirus, highlighting its news with priority to all users. Pinterest also took the initiative to cure the real information, in order to help its users to deal with the outbreak, to detect symptoms and action measures.
Amazon has been watching for scams related to the sale of products that indicate to cure the coronavirus, warning the respective companies of its withdrawal if they kept misleading descriptions, including masks and bottles of disinfectant.
Even in Portugal, there have been joint initiatives by Portuguese technologies to create solutions against Covid-19. It all started with an informal conversation between the founders of technological startups, but it quickly evolved to become a movement with more than 120 companies and 600 people from various different areas working together to help the country in the fight against COVID-19, counting with 12 projects under development.