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Another Social Media Platform Blocks Vaccine Posts

The third most popular social media platform in the world, boasting over 1 billion users, says it is attempting to reduce misinformation about vaccines spread by the site’s users. Instagram, owned by Facebook, is cracking down by blocking posts with certain hashtags, including #vaccineskill, #vaccinescauseautism, #vaccinescauseaids and #vaccinesarepoison. The announcement was made at a recent press event by Karina Newton, Instagram’s global head of public policy. She explained that the social media platform will effectively being blocking access to hashtags that return misinformation designed to persuade people not to get vaccinated.

The platform’s policy has also extended to address vaccine hashtags that may seem “innocent” at first glance. Any vaccine hashtag that is used in a number of posts to promote information Instagram deems false will be added to the block list. According to the company, “known vaccine misinformation” refers to misinformation that has been verified as false by the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and other similar organizations.

The widely popular social media platform claims its approach will only target misinformation about vaccines, not anti-vaccine opinions. Yet the company also announced plans to introduce a pop-up message for users searching for vaccine information. They say the pop-up message will link users to high-quality and accurate information about vaccines.

Despite the fact that the U.S. Constitution protects the civil liberties of all Americans, including freedom of thought, speech, conscience, religious belief and the right to dissent and petition the government, the efforts to shut down public discussion about vaccine safety is at an all-time high. Facebook is now hiding vaccine critical content, Pinterest blocks it, Amazon has removed films from its Prime Video streaming service and books discussing vaccine risks and/or biomedical and holistic health treatments for autism, and Google is burying content and videos relating to vaccine safety issues.

Vaccine hesitancy continues to grow because vaccine injuries have become more common, making it clear that one-sided, pro-vaccine information cannot be trusted. Standing up for the legal right to make voluntary, informed vaccine choices is more important now than ever.