HealthDay Reports: COVID-19 Facts or Fiction — 1 in 4 YouTube Videos Misleads Viewers
In a new study, researchers found that almost 28% of the English-language YouTube videos they looked at on the topic of COVID-19 — which accounted for 62 million screenings — were not accurate.
COVID-19 Facts or Fiction: 1 in 4 YouTube Videos Misleads Viewers
WEDNESDAY, May 13, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- More than one-quarter of popular English-language COVID-19 information videos posted to YouTube are misleading, researchers warn.
There are posts, for example, falsely claiming that drug companies already have a cure for COVID-19, but won't sell it, and that different countries have stronger strains of coronavirus, a new study finds.
YouTube viewers "should be skeptical, use common sense and consult reputable sources -- public health agencies or physicians -- to fact-check their information," said study lead author Heidi Oi-Yee Li, a medical student at the University of Ottawa in Canada.
With billions of viewers, YouTube has enormous potential to bolster or hamper public health efforts, Li and her colleagues said in background notes. But what they turned up in their recent YouTube search is "alarming," Li said.