CNET: Over 40% of Republicans think Bill Gates will use COVID-19 vaccine to implant tracking microchips, survey says

CNET: Over 40% of Republicans think Bill Gates will use COVID-19 vaccine to implant tracking microchips, survey says. “Fighting misinformation and conspiracy theories about the novel coronavirus has almost been as hard as battling the pandemic itself. And a new survey has found that one conspiracy theory about Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is taking hold. A conspiracy theory that Gates is planning to use a future COVID-19 vaccine to implant microchips in billions of people in order to monitor their movements has gained supporters particularly among Fox News viewers and Republicans, the survey found.”

GOP governor offers emotional plea to the anti-mask crowd: Stop this senseless culture war (Washington Post)

Washington Post: GOP governor offers emotional plea to the anti-mask crowd: Stop this senseless culture war. “As states across the country have gradually pushed forward with reopening in recent weeks, protesters representing a small but apparently growing movement — especially within the Republican Party — have continued to push for it to go faster. And one very visible thing has somehow turned into a perceived political statement: wearing a mask. A reporter at a Minnesota news station — one who happens to be an old college friend of mine — was even harassed this week for wearing a mask while covering these protests. Across the border in North Dakota, though, GOP Gov. Doug Burgum on Friday offered a plea to stop the madness.”

AP: Face masks make a political statement in era of coronavirus

AP: Face masks make a political statement in era of coronavirus. “The decision to wear a mask in public is becoming a political statement — a moment to pick sides in a brewing culture war over containing the coronavirus. While not yet as loaded as a ‘Make America Great Again’ hat, the mask is increasingly a visual shorthand for a debate pitting those willing to follow health officials’ guidance and cover their faces against those who feel it violates their freedom or buys into a threat they think is overblown.”

The Daily Beast: Fox-Loving Parents Are Driving Coronavirus-Paranoid Kids Insane

The Daily Beast: Fox-Loving Parents Are Driving Coronavirus-Paranoid Kids Insane. “The spread of coronavirus is pitting family members against each other over the severity of the pandemic and the steps needed to combat it. The fault lines are generational and geographic. But mainly they appear determined by news appetites.”

CNET: Inside a pro-Trump YouTube disinformation network that spans Vietnam to Bosnia

CNET: Inside a pro-Trump YouTube disinformation network that spans Vietnam to Bosnia. “YouTube removed at least 20 channels posting false or divisive content to generate ad dollars. The channels used voice-over actors to read scripts. At least one of them was hired on Fiverr, the freelance marketplace.”

NiemanLab: Americans of all political stripes expect 2020’s fake news to be biased against their side

NiemanLab: Americans of all political stripes expect 2020’s fake news to be biased against their side. “Fake news, misinformation, and disinformation will be major concerns in the 2020 presidential election. According to previous research by the Pew Research Center, half of American adults describe misinformation as a ‘very big problem’ — more than who say the same about climate change, racism, and terrorism (though fewer than who say healthcare affordability, the wealth gap, and drug addiction).”

The fact-checker’s dilemma: Humans are hardwired to dismiss facts that don’t fit their worldview (NiemanLab)

NiemanLab: The fact-checker’s dilemma: Humans are hardwired to dismiss facts that don’t fit their worldview. “Motivated reasoning is what social scientists call the process of deciding what evidence to accept based on the conclusion one prefers. As I explain in my book The Truth About Denial: Bias and Self-Deception in Science, Politics, and Religion, this very human tendency applies to all kinds of facts about the physical world, economic history and current events.”