Facebook no longer removes posts claiming Covid-19 was manufactured

midian182

Posts: 6,914   +62
Staff member
A hot potato: Facebook has been stringent when it comes to enforcing its Covid-19 misinformation rules, but there’s one claim the social media giant will no longer remove: that the virus was man-made or manufactured.

As reported by Politico, Facebook altered its policy following a Wall Street Journal report of three scientists at the Wuhan Institute of Virology being hospitalized in late 2019 with symptoms similar to those experienced when infected with the virus.

The report led to president Joe Biden ordering intelligence agents to investigate the Covid-19’s origin and the lab-leak theory. “I have now asked the Intelligence Community to redouble their efforts to collect and analyze information that could bring us closer to a definitive conclusion,” Biden said.

The Wuhan Institute of Virology. Did Covid-19 originate here?

The US Intelligence Community has “coalesced around two likely scenarios” regarding the origins of Covid-19: it emerged from human contact with an infected animal, or it came from a laboratory accident. The IC is currently leaning toward the former scenario.

Misinformation of any kind, particularly when it comes to that of a political or medical nature, has long been a problem for social media sites. Facebook started its battle against Covid-19 posts in February 2020, when it said it would ban misleading coronavirus ads. Following a surge in conspiracy theories, including the bizarrely popular belief that it was caused by 5G cellular towers, Facebook increased efforts to remove false claims and even started notifying users who “liked” coronavirus-related fake news.

With the policy update, Facebook will no longer remove claims such as Covid-19 was made in a lab or is a government-created bioweapon. “We’re continuing to work with health experts to keep pace with the evolving nature of the pandemic and regularly update our policies as new facts and trends emerge,” the company writes.

Facebook earlier this year said it had removed more than 12 million pieces of Covid-19/vaccine-related content containing misinformation that could lead to imminent physical harm.

Permalink to story.

 

QuantumPhysics

Posts: 5,028   +5,640
It’s very possible that COVID-19 was a SARS virus being studied in a lab that mutated and got out.

I have no proof.

Bottom line: I knew about Covid 19 back in November 2019 because I pay attention to Chinese news.

Even Tesla knew: they had to shut factories there down.

My government was so dysfunctional that it took till March 2020 to address it.

By then, the spread was already too far along.

Our intelligence apparatus was broken by the commander in chief of that time whose name isn’t worth mentioning.
 
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Plutoisaplanet

Posts: 479   +695
So basically Facebook and Twitter have been accidentally censoring the truth from us, though unfounded at the time, and labeled it as misinformation. They’ve banned people based on a rule that was supposed to protect us from lies, and instead ended up hiding the truth. This is why tech companies, fact checking companies, and media companies should not label misinformation or engage in any similar practice. They may intend to be informing us of the truth, but they don’t even have the truth and are incapable of effectively distinguishing misinformation from truth. This is not the first time this has happened and it’s become more frequent as they’ve put in more effort into this futile and harmful endeavor.

Medical misinformation especially cannot be enforced well as most knowledge in science is theory and not law, meaning even scientists are not claiming it as fact. I can claim that Pluto is a planet, and I bet one day the astronomy community will flip on that very claim to agree with me. The reason why is because the underlying science supporting the definition of a planet is a theory of how our solar system formed. There will be additional evidence collected in regards to how planets form that may no longer support the current theory and change the official definition of a planet. Should I be censored from saying “Pluto is a Planet” if there was some reason that it would be harmful for people to believe me and have views that go against the grain?
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 355   +543
I love how so many people belittled Trump when he was in office and he said the origins were man made.....Trump is dumb! Trump is bad! Boo! Bad Trump! So, news sources and social media giants took it upon themselves to silence voices.....

Lo and behold, Biden comes around to say that the virus certainly could be man made. Then look....social media giants (at least Facebook at the moment) are no longer removing posts.

It all kind of makes you go, hmmmmm.....

Let's be honest getting your news from Facebook is less reliable and believable than reading it in the funny pages.

Sadly, that is what many people do. On the other hand, I can't really argue and say that the news from social media places is any worse than the BS they spoon feed the population on "legit" news programs.
 

Squid Surprise

Posts: 4,099   +3,258
So basically Facebook and Twitter have been accidentally censoring the truth from us, though unfounded at the time, and labeled it as misinformation.
No... we still don't know that's the truth.... it's still fairly unlikely that it came from a lab - and it almost certainly wasn't deliberately manufactured in one.

And most of the stuff that was being blocked by Facebook was crap like "COVID was manufactured by the government in order to cull the population - or to keep us in our homes, etc..." And that's definitely false....
 

Cubi Dorf

Posts: 343   +224
I am against censorships. People should be educated that not everything on the Internets is true. People might be wrong in their posting. But Facebook might be wrong too. I think the solution is more education about choosing who is trustworthy and being able to identify misinformations. Censorship is wrong solution. It is anti freedom.
 

Hexic

Posts: 986   +1,430
TechSpot Elite
I am against censorships. People should be educated that not everything on the Internets is true. People might be wrong in their posting. But Facebook might be wrong too. I think the solution is more education about choosing who is trustworthy and being able to identify misinformations. Censorship is wrong solution. It is anti freedom.

People being more educated would be a perfect world scenario. Unfortunately once you introduce an idea, right or wrong, herd mentality kicks in and all logic and reason goes out the window.

Look at the 2020 summer riots, look at the capital building attack - both examples of mindless action & crime, and the result of a complete lack of education on the subject at hand.

This being said, it still doesn't justify private companies choosing what data they state is correct.. But then again, society is so unintelligent that they will believe anything that fits their political agenda - that Facebook strategically (and ironically) places on their feeds to begin with. It's all sad, and shows how ignorant society truly is.

/E: Moral of the story - get off of social media. It's a cancer to society.
 

hover389

Posts: 29   +59
They never should have done that to begin with. The lab theory has always been obviously worth investigating because the natural theory has never had more evidence than the lab theory. Absolute failure by the media and tech companies
 

CommonSenseTech

Posts: 103   +94
I love how so many people belittled Trump when he was in office and he said the origins were man made.....Trump is dumb! Trump is bad! Boo! Bad Trump!

So, news sources and social media giants took it upon themselves to silence voices.....

Trump was bad; that he might have had a scintilla of insight in one area doesn’t obviate that general trend.

Social media companies cannot “silence voices” either. They can choose to syndicate or not syndicate content that complies with their own values and world views, as private businesses with First Amendment rights to free speech and free association.

The far right does this as well. If you don’t believe me, create an account on right wing social media platforms like Free Republic, Breitbart or Fox Nation and say something positive about, say, Kamala Harris. Your post and your account will both be deleted within moments, by the same people who complain about “social media censorship.”

Doesn’t mean your voice is getting silenced there either.
 

CommonSenseTech

Posts: 103   +94
Assuming there was a trend. Stick to the story and keep your dogma to yourself.
No, I will reply to comments as I see fit, and will not acquiesce to your alt-right cancel culture demands. Sorry, not sorry.

As for whether Trump had a general trend, you may wish to ask one of the 100+ Capitol Police officers injured in the insurrectionists riot that Trump instigated whether they thought the trend was positive. Back the Blue, amirite?

If, of course, that doesn’t trigger your delicate sensibilities, for which I profoundly and deeply do not apologize.
 
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Dimitrios

Posts: 833   +635
LOL and you guys thought I was crazy. Fakebook is run by lemmings that favor Democrats and hate Trump. Next topic will be people being banned for proving the truth and or favoring Trump. I was a banned many times with proof and medium sized news groups were banned or had their stories removed.

There is a lot of dirt out there and it will be expose sooner or later, can't wait!
 

CommonSenseTech

Posts: 103   +94
Yeah yeah, the storm is coming, Q is going to restore Trump to the presidency after JFK Jr comes out of hiding, California wildfires are started by space lasers controlled by Jews, mole children live under Central Park, Democrats eat the blood of babies for eternal youth, Arizona ballots have bamboo in them because they were made in China, blah blah blah
 
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Dimitrios

Posts: 833   +635
It’s very possible that COVID-19 was a SARS virus being studied in a lab that mutated and got out.

I have no proof.

Bottom line: I knew about Covid 19 back in November 2019 because I pay attention to Chinese news.

Even Tesla knew: they had to shut factories there down.

My government was so dysfunctional that it took till March 2020 to address it.

By then, the spread was already too far along.

Our intelligence apparatus was broken by the commander in chief of that time whose name isn’t worth mentioning.

Yup during that time the Dems were too busy with those witch hunts and also making gold impeachment pens. I'm being serious look up the time frame.

Remember when Pelosi ripped up those papers behind Trump on TV? 80 year old baby that should be focused on real issues.
 

CommonSenseTech

Posts: 103   +94
Yup during that time the Dems were too busy with those witch hunts and also making gold impeachment pens. I'm being serious look up the time frame.
While Trump said that the COVID virus was a “hoax” that would “disappear.”

To be fair, he wasn’t entirely wrong. As a result of his ineptitude, close to 700,000 Americans have disappeared as a result of COVID.
 

Dimitrios

Posts: 833   +635
While Trump said that the COVID virus was a “hoax” that would “disappear.”

To be fair, he wasn’t entirely wrong. As a result of his ineptitude, close to 700,000 Americans have disappeared as a result of COVID.

I kinda agree, the problem was that during his time in office news agencies were making up stories or flipping stories around to make Trump look bad. We all can admit the majority of news agencies weren't being professional weren't taken seriously, almost like America's Democrat news agencies acted like "TMZ". To be honest most people didn't take those agencies seriously and no joke Trump was bashed 24/7 Good example was when Dems blamed Trump for the cages but it was Obama that built them!!!!!!

Want proof? During that time study ( Car Accident ) video's on YOUTUBE with dash cams and you can hear the Trump bashing 24/7 on the radio.

When I wanted to find the truth I always had to do my homework which is grab all the info and form your opinion.

To be honest I was the one of many that didn't believe the virus was that bad and that was my mistake. I thought the news was overreacting. Just to let you know my 2nd job is working for the school system, I had the virus and 4 other people. It was hell but I got through after 7-10 days.
 
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CommonSenseTech

Posts: 103   +94
Yeah, it’s just so unfair. It’s not like presidents have ever been criticized by the media before. Great point.

Finding Trump bashing isn’t uncommon, because Trump is unpopular. Failed politicians tend to be unpopular.
 

Lew Zealand

Posts: 1,860   +2,058
TechSpot Elite
They never should have done that to begin with. The lab theory has always been obviously worth investigating because the natural theory has never had more evidence than the lab theory. Absolute failure by the media and tech companies

There is more evidence for the natural theory than the lab theory.

The virus has relatives in nature but not ones close enough to definitively determine what it's most direct ancestor is.

The virus doesn't contain the genetic sequences which are left over when you deliberately engineer and insert those sequences in a lab.

Neither of these are in any way definitive but it suggests that the natural origin is more likely.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,488   +1,705
TechSpot Elite
Even if it was man-made, does it really matter? Would the Chinese be doing anything that the Americans and Russians aren't? Of course not. When you play with the most dangerous pathogens on the planet, it's only a matter of time before something goes wrong. Welcome to the human race.

"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
 

Axle Grease

Posts: 206   +135
While Trump said that the COVID virus was a “hoax” that would “disappear.”

To be fair, he wasn’t entirely wrong. As a result of his ineptitude, close to 700,000 Americans have disappeared as a result of COVID.

You would do better to focus on reducing your own ineptitude by not parroting what others said Trump said, and instead quote Trump's own words and in context. Trump NEVER said that the COVID virus was a hoax.