A new study (Media Matters, Salon, July 18) finds that Fox News peddled misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic 253 times in only five days. The documented instances included claims which undermined scienceand faith in Lon experts, as well as demands that schools and businesses reopen at the risk of public health.
Primetime host Laura Ingraham, who has no medical or scientific background whatsoever, led the pack with about a quarter of the claims — 63 total, or just more than 12 per show. Additionally, the network’s “straight news” programs contributed about 35% of the misinformation.
The study, published Thursday by media watchdog Media Matters for America, was conducted from July 6 to 10 — the week after a Yahoo News report proclaimed that Fox’s coronavirus coverage had taken a “remarkable turn” for the better.
However haltingly and incompletely, the president’s favorite news outlet has started to acknowledge, across various programs and its news site, that the coronavirus is a far graver threat than even [President Donald] Trump himself will acknowledge.
That report cited two articles on the network’s website and two instances of Fox News personalities Sean Hannity and Steve Doocy making remarks about masks that, while stopping short of endorsements, did not mock them outright.
The article also pointed out that Fox News requires its employees to wear masks at work most of the time. Additionally, the network appears to have canceled a Fox Nation show about the pandemic hosted by coronavirus conspiracy theorist Alex Berenson, though extant episodes remain available.