Voto Latino's Maria Teresa Kumar: On Facebook and in local news, “Spanish-language COVID-19 misinformation remains rampant”

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Citation From the November 17, 2021, House Oversight and Reform Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis hearing titled, “Combating Coronavirus Cons and the Monetization of Misinformation”

MARIA TERESA KUMAR (VOTO LATINO PRESIDENT): In 2021, Voto Latino officially launched the Latino Anti-Disinformation Lab with our partners at Media Matters. We use sophisticated media monitoring to better understand the misinformation targeting Latinos. Then we research those methods to pushback on disinformation through sophisticated experimentation. We found that Spanish-language COVID-19 misinformation remains rampant on social media platforms like Facebook and local news channels. We found that starting 2020, Russia used government Twitter accounts and its own propaganda platforms from the Middle East to Latin America to sow distrust. We've also found that there has been influencers on the internet, for example Tierra Pura articles, claim that children can die from COVID-19 vaccine or suffer severe adverse side effects. Like in my mother’s case, we also see vaccine influencers that appear to be doctors and health professionals.