Anti-vaccines are few but very influential on social networks such as Twitter or Facebook

Anti-vaccines are few but very influential on social networks such as Twitter or Facebook

Some 33 million people have been vaccinated in Europe, and 222 cases of thrombi have been reported (not all necessarily fatal). For every million infected with COVID-19 there are 8,000 deaths, so if those 33 million people were infected, we could count 26,400 deaths. In other words, by administering the vaccine we have potentially prevented 26,400 deaths in exchange for 222 cases of thrombi .

However, both some media and social networks are skeptical and even fearful with vaccines such as AstraZeneca. In part, this rejection movement is also linked to the anti-vaccine movement of all life. Which also gives us a hint of something important: they are few, but they make noise .

Influence in social networks

The modern anti-vaccination movement is led by a relatively small number of dedicated and generally well-funded influencers who have accumulated a large following on social media platforms, where fear spreads more easily than facts and nuances .

Specifically, two thirds of the anti-vaccine content shared or published on Facebook and Twitter between February 1 and March 16, 2021 can be attributed to only twelve people . At least in the United States.

One of the first names on the list , for example, is Joseph Mercola . His combined reach on social media is 3.6 million followers, so when he shares a falsehood that ‘forced vaccination’ is part of a plan to ‘reset the world economic system’, that idea spreads like the gunpowder.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. , is perhaps the most visible leader of the anti-vaccination movement. There is also the influential couple Sayer Ji and Kelly Brogan. Ji recently shared a false claim that Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine had killed more people than the disease itself.

The public cannot make informed decisions about their health when they are constantly inundated with misinformation and false content. Social networks, in part, live off the activity that these elements distribute. A good topic to debate is whether or not we should nip a social problem that is so clearly identified in the bud .