Internet culture has evolved so much ever since earlier disease outbreaks. Back then, we relied on news outlets to set the entire mood when SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) first came about. Today, you’ll see constant updates on the news, real-time tallies of infections and casualties, and even memes and a video game about disease outbreaks.
Simply put, it’s come to a point where concerns of an international nature can be viewed through so many lenses, whether they may be informative, critical, progressive, or even entertaining and satirical. In other cases, they can be borderline racist, judgmental, or essentially nonsensical. These are all products of the information age, which is why we’re constantly reminded to be sensitive and conscious of what we put out in the online world.
But if there’s one thing we can learn from modern disease outbreaks, it’s that medical science has become so advanced nowadays that we’re able to proactively pave the path towards vaccines or a cure. Just check out this article and this article.
For medical professions alike, these are highly positive breakthroughs.
But what can we do as regular people sifting through news and information on the web?
It’s always best that we stay informed and equip ourselves with a healthy dose of skepticism. In the Philippines, there have been a number of ‘fake news’ advising people to ‘stay away’ from certain hospitals that allegedly have people infected with the coronavirus. Eventually, these rumors that spread about got debunked and verified as false by the hospitals themselves and the media.
It cannot be stressed enough, but we have to be able to constantly verify our sources and information. Digital literacy is becoming more and more essential today given the amount of information we consume on a daily basis. Asking very simple questions such as “Is this true? Who wrote this? Is the article written properly?” can literally save lives.
For starters, we have to battle it out with false information by sharing information that make sense and are actually helpful in setting up the general mood and conversation. No one is ever 100% certain, but we can at least help one another get closer to the truth, one step at a time.
Let’s take the conversation forward. Find out how we can collaborate for a sustainable future: https://berdeboy.blog/collaborate/