Kamilla Batitis is a fourth year Professional Communication student at Ryerson University. She is passionate about bridging the gap between traditional and new media through strategic content creation, design and delivery. After graduation, Kamilla plans on seeking career opportunities within the Canadian cannabis industry, in hopes to decriminalize and normalize cannabis use. Looking forward to working directly with licensed cannabis producers, she plans on using her knowledge and experience in communications to create content to educate the public about cannabis and its health benefits.
Ever since the pandemic began in 2019, information concerning COVID-19 and its existence in China have quickly infiltrated mainstream media. Considered as the first pandemic in history to utilize technology and social media to inform the public about health and safety, COVID-19 and social media platforms have also played a role in enabling and amplifying an infodemic that is responsible for endangering the public. According to the World Health Organization, an infodemic is characterized by “an over-abundance of information – some accurate and some not – that makes it hard for people to find trustworthy sources and reliable guidance when they need it.”
The purpose of my research is to highlight and discuss how social media and the mass distribution of information on the Internet have negatively influenced the public’s perception of news about the ongoing pandemic and COVID-19, due to its social and economic politics. Through assessing the relationship between participant social media use and the existence of misinformation online, this research will uncover why and how fake news pervades the Internet.
media; social media; network; fake news; misinformation; covid-19; virus; pandemic