U.S. Surgeon General demands big tech crackdown on users to combat Covid misinformation; made more than $2 million doing pandemic consulting work
After the Biden administration failed to meet the 70 percent goal of the United States’ adult population receiving at least one vaccine dose by July 4, his administration now believes Covid misinformation is partly to be blamed for the vaccine hesitancy that caused the administration to miss its July 4 target.
On Thursday, Biden’s Surgeon General Vivek Murthy called on big tech companies and social media platforms to censor ‘misinformation’ related to COVID-19 and vaccines. Murthy used his first formal advisory to deliver a strongly worded critical attack against tech and social media companies.
Without providing any specifics,’ Murthy blamed ‘vaccine hesitancy’ on misinformation. Murthy went on to accuse social network platforms of not doing enough to stop the spread of dangerous health misinformation — especially about Covid-19. Murthy also declared that health misinformation is “an urgent threat to public health.”
Meanwhile, according to a report from the Washington Post, Vivek Murthy made more than $2 million doing pandemic consulting, speeches from big companies including some tech companies like Airbnb. The post wrote:
“Murthy was paid millions of dollars last year in coronavirus-related consulting for Carnival Corporation’s cruise lines, Airbnb’s rental properties and other firms, in addition to collecting hundreds of thousands of dollars in speaking fees from dozens of organizations, according to ethics documents that Murthy filed this month.”
During his appearance at Thursday’s White House press briefing, Dr. Murthy said, “Modern technology companies have enabled misinformation to poison our information environment, with little accountability to their users.”
He also added, “We expect more from our technology companies,” he added. “We’re asking them to operate with greater transparency and accountability. We’re asking them to monitor misinformation, more closely.”
Dr. Murthy’s advisory, a 22-page report with footnotes, recommends that big tech “impose clear consequences for accounts that repeatedly violate platform policies.” On page 12 of the report, Dr. Murthy said:
“Prioritize early detection of misinformation “super-spreaders” and repeat offenders. Impose clear consequences for accounts that repeatedly violate platform policies.”
Below is a screenshot from the 22-page report.