Instagram is attempting to crack down on misinformation about vaccines
(New Scientist) – Instagram is cracking down on misinformation about vaccinations by blocking hashtags that include verifiably false information about the subject.
The Facebook-owned platform already blocks obvious hashtag terms used to spread false information, such as #vaccinescauseautism, #vaccinescauseaids and #vaccinesarepoison, but its policy is now being extended to address vaccine hashtags that seem innocent on the surface.
For example, a hashtag like #vaccines1234 does not contain anything alarming in its wording, but if it is found to be used in a number of posts to promote verifiably false posts about vaccines it will be added to the block list.
When a hashtag is blocked, users are presented with no results when searching for it.
Instagram’s approach will only targets misinformation about vaccines and not anti-vax opinions, which it says is not something it would take action on.
Read the full story at newscientist.com