Should it be illegal to persistently spread Coronavirus disinformation?

10 (55.6%)
Yes - but there need to be safeguards in place
1 (5.6%)
4 (22.2%)
It's more complicated than that
3 (16.7%)

Total Members Voted: 18

Author Topic: Should it be illegal to persistently spread Coronavirus disinformation?  (Read 606 times)

Fambo Number Mive

  • Golden Member
  • *****
From the rancid Daily Mail

...Conservative MP Damian Collins, who has launched a fact-checking service called Infotagion to combat falsehoods during the pandemic, told the PA news agency: “Disinformation can kill people.

“It can lead them to make the wrong decisions about what’s good for them and their family, and in the most extreme courses, it could lead them to take a drug or a treatment that could be dangerous to their health.”

Mr Collins, former chairman of the Commons’ digital, culture, media and sport committee, said there need to be “requirements in law” to stop people who are persistently spreading disinformation online, such as Mr Icke...

I do agree with Collins that disinformation can kill people and I'm fully against any Coronavirus disinformation, but I do wonder who decides what is disinformation? What is to stop this law being used to smear legitimate criticism of the government's response as disinformation? Perhaps it should only be illegal if it can clearly be demonstrated that the advice would cause people to risk their life or the lives of others.

I think that it would be better to make it easier for people to report disinformation on social media, and they shouldn't have to create an account to do so. I've created an account on Twitter recently and have reported some disinformation, and at least one post is still up there.


  • The Fun House Grand Prix
I'm firmly against any law around what information is correct and what isn't, otherwise you'll end up with some biased body declaring what absolute truth is and then we're totally fucked. If the information is blatantly wrong then the problem will sort itself out.

There's no way this Infotagion bullshit is set up to protect people against accidentally thinking Icke is telling the truth. It's a grift.


  • The Last Living Member of COVID-20
If it means Gove goes to jail, 100% behind it

No, for the reasons Twed said. Look at China, basically, except our government is a lot less benevolent.

I'd prefer a requirement that enshrines in law that no person leaves schools without at least the ability to discern fact from fiction. What they then chose to do with that ability is up to them but we should regard it as a failure of society that people don't care to examine the world around them at such a base level. That's not an accident, of course. Wouldn't do for the plebs to think too much.

massive bereavement

  • Representation mingles with what it represents
There'd be ways round it anyway, a "For entertainment purposes only" disclaimer or something like that.

The newspapers would never let it happen. Imagine if the press weren't allowed to make nonsensical health claims, it would be like Soviet Russia.

Wonderful Butternut

  • Summer Night City!
It should be illegal to be a member of the Conservative Party.


  • Golden Member
  • *****
I think there needs to be a careful distinction between people expressing opinions they genuinely believe, and discussing them no matter how 'controversial' or against the media consensus etc. they may be, and eg shilling for products that don't work in order to make profit.
I don't think it's a significant problem in this country (apart from lockdown making people go a bit mad).  People who follow the likes of David Icke would convince themselves of any old bollocks anyway, best we can do is have those discussions where we need to have them rather than give them a martyr complex and locking people up for suggesting that the Royals are lizard people.

Convinced one of my mates to daub marmite over his face when he goes to Asda, cos it’s too bitter for the virus to deal with, yeah?

If I have to go to jail for that, then so be it.