24 Jun

As Brazil reaches 1 million infected, stories of family members of victims increase on Facebook

Contrary to what health institutions say, videos published on WhatsApp question the efficacy of masks as a way to prevent Covid-19 and defend that wearing them increases the chances to be infected by the Sars-Cov-2

Updated 29 de June, 2020 at 9:51 am

Debate on Facebook focuses on the advance of the disease; on Instagram, recovered patients were the highlight
On Facebook, the links with the most interactions commented on the more than 1 million infected and 50 thousand diseased due to Covid-19, a mark reached in Brazil last week. Together with the information, many news pieces included stories of family members of victims, which generated a high level of engagement. On Instagram, profiles of politicians and bodies of the Federal Government predominated, obtaining a very high potential of reach and engagement; the focus was on posts about the number of recovered patients in Brazil.

On WhatsApp, videos associate wearing masks with a decrease in immunity
Three videos with a high volume of shares on WhatsApp argued that wearing masks to prevent against Covid-19 causes the opposite effect, decreasing immunity and increasing the likelihood of infection. The argument appeared in the fourth most shared video during the period, in a statement made by a doctor. The argument was also present among the major YouTube links that circulated on WhatsApp and was the topic and third and fourth most shared links. The videos have more than 200 thousand views on YouTube.

With accusatory arguments, support and opposition groups focus on different agendas
While profiles from the federal government support group have been focusing their criticism on the conflicts that have recently put the Congress and the Supreme court against the Executive Branch and its supporters, the opposition group continues to voice their concern and frustration regarding the apparent neglect by the Federal Government of the negative impacts of Covid-19 in the country and its lack of commitment in controlling the pandemic.

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