Misleading Facts Fuel COVID-19 Misinformation, Evade Social Media Moderation : NPR

By just about any metric, it’s clear stories linking deaths to vaccines have spread in such a way that wildly overstates real numbers. Among the more than 85 million people in the U.S. who have now received at least one vaccination shot, less than .0018% of shot recipients have died sometime afterward. Even that small number includes people who were vaccinated while also suffering from other health conditions. Whether they have a vaccine or not, roughly 8,000 people die in the U.S. every day. And as more people get vaccinated, more vaccinated people will continue to die from unrelated causes, which the pharmaceutical company Pfizer alluded to in a statement earlier this year. “It is important to note that serious adverse events, including deaths that are unrelated to the vaccine, are unfortunately likely to occur at a similar rate as they would in the general population,” the statement said. But UNC-Chapel Hill’s Freelon said when it comes to conspiratorial thinking, stats and nuance often don’t matter as much as tragic stories. “This is something that we see repeatedly with human cognition,” Freelon said. “It’s the emphasis on the breathless anecdote and then the discounting of statistics that are much more representative.”

Source: Misleading Facts Fuel COVID-19 Misinformation, Evade Social Media Moderation : NPR