The media and social networks in pandemic

Mr. Director,
With the passing of the pandemic, we realize the influence of the media and social networks. The former, widely distributed and absorbed relatively uniformly by the population, especially in generations prior to the “millennials”, speaking to a relatively homogeneous and “mainstream” audience. The latter, strongly consumed and incorporated by millennials and subsequent generations, creating this, at times, false sense of listening to majorities and trends. I say “false feeling”, because the algorithms of the RRSS feed back to the users of content of their own interest and tendency, therefore, more than being a meeting place, a place of isolation and excessive conviction of convictions and positions is generated, and even radicalization, and subsequent polarization. Perhaps it is time for the media to bring to the fore instances of information, education and debate, in order to break the bubbles that are generated in social networks. And what does the pandemic have to do with it? It has been by definition a moment of isolation and environment favoring polarization over its management and effects, from quarantines, the management of figures, to vaccines. The most radical movements based on pseudosciences we do not see them arrive because they remain hermetic and grow underground to dominate a critical mass wide enough to generate noise in those people who do not handle the information, but the radical message (sometimes conspiratorial) generates some resonance or represents in part their regret.
To close, it seems fundamental to me that the media take an educational, informative and dialoguing role, as an example: this current obsession with the number of cases, leaving aside the aspects that could have a greater impact; ICU beds, obesity levels in Chile (especially children), levels of sedentary behaviors, and so much more. But we continue to fall into the same contents, approaching them in the same way.
Javier Saa Molina
Medical specialist in sports medicine
Director of the Chilean Society of Sports Medicine

Original source in Spanish

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