Reddit has banned anti-vaccine and anti-mask subreddit r/NoNewNormal and has quarantined 54 different subreddits related to COVID denial. Every week in the past, the company’s CEO said in a post that Reddit was meant to be a spot of “open and genuine dialogue and debate,” even for concepts that “query or disagree with widespread consensus.” In right this moment’s put up, the corporate has clarified its guidelines with regard to well being misinformation.
The subreddit NoNewNormal has been cited by many within the Reddit group as a supply of vaccine misinformation, and it was recognized for “brigading” different subreddit’s discussions by butting in on conversations about COVID or associated insurance policies in different communities. NoNewNormal was the supply of 80 such brigades prior to now month, according to Reddit security, and the conduct continued after the group was warned, resulting in its ban. The group had previously been quarantined. For the 54 different subreddits which were quarantined, Reddit warns potential guests that medical recommendation ought to come from docs moderately than discussion board members.
Reddit, along with other social networks and online marketplaces, has struggled with misinformation about COVID therapies in latest weeks. The platform has guidelines that search to handle the considerations however admits the way it was decoding and implementing these guidelines hasn’t been clear. In right this moment’s announcement, it said that it classifies well being misinformation as “falsifiable well being info that encourages or poses a big danger of bodily hurt to the reader.” It additionally says that well being disinformation means “falsifiable well being info that has been manipulated and offered to mislead” and provides the instance of posting faux recommendation attributed to well being officers.
In its put up, Reddit cites customers’ frustration with the platform’s “dealing with of COVID denial content material.” Just lately, a large number of Reddit’s most popular subs have been going private, hiding their posts from individuals who aren’t subscribed to them, to protest the corporate’s inaction. The motion was partially spurred by the spread of misinformation around ivermectin — a drug whose veterinary type meant for livestock has been really helpful as a treatment for COVID, regardless of the Food and Drug Administration’s warnings that utilizing drugs for animals might be harmful.
Even earlier than Reddit’s announcement right this moment, some customers have been making an attempt to take the state of affairs into their very own palms — /r/Ivermectin has been spammed with shitposts, calls for trans rights, and furry porn involving horses. (The hyperlink is a fairly SFW clarification.) The latter bought the sub marked as NSFW, and the flurry of posts has made it troublesome to carry conversations on the now-quarantined group.