ScienceUpFirst begins influencer campaign to fight misinformation online

Launched in the summer of 2020, ScienceUpFirst has been working with scientists and health experts to stop the spread of misinformation about the pandemic—no small challenge in the digital age, when lies and bad information can spread like, well, a virus.

But with the worst of the Covid crisis behind us, the group is thinking about what’s next.

“As we begin to expand our focus to include health and science misinformation more broadly, we know we need to engage new audiences with our content,” said Magda Byma, director of the ScienceUpFirst initiative, in a release. To do that, the group has just hired Strategic Objectives to run a new influencer campaign.

And yes, while it is true a lot of misinformation actually comes from influencers, it was probably unrealistic to expect them to say: “Don’t, under any circumstances, ever get your science information from the same person who gives you makeup tips or advice on what crypto to buy like right now bro.”

Instead, the influencers speak about the dangers of health and science misinformation, and how quickly it can spread online.

“Canadians are constantly bombarded with viral, online misinformation and ScienceUpFirst plays an essential role in equipping Canadians with the evidence-based knowledge they need to make informed decisions,” said Adriana Lurz, senior vice-president, Strategic Objectives. “We are honoured to partner with ScienceUpFirst to champion good science and drive critical awareness that will keep Canadians safe.


David Brown