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Don’t believe the hype: MSM plays on coronavirus alarm with fear-mongering stories about everyday viruses
In the wake of the novel coronavirus outbreak in China, mainstream media outlets have pounced on fears of deadly viral outbreaks for easy clickbait headlines. But is there really anything to fear?
The Yaravirus is an up-and-coming media sensation, complete with a tropical home and an evocative name. Found lurking in an artificial lake in the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte, and named for a mythical mermaid that lures unsuspecting men to their death, Yaravirus has serious potential to generate headlines. The fact that it can only transfer between amoebas, and therefore presents no threat to humans, does not negate that.
Following in the footsteps of seedy Instagram ‘influencers’ and social media ‘personalities’ who wasted no time in generating content based on coronavirus fears, the MSM has jumped on the bandwagon. The Independent, Livescience.com and the Daily Mail Online are among a host of media outlets to have gotten in on the Yaravirus story.