Amid the confusion and uncertainties emerging during the coronavirus, has media actually overblown and overcapitalized the issue?
COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease) is indeed a serious issue and a pandemic. Unlike its predecessor SARS, COVID-19 has a low fatality, but incredibly fast transmission. Up to this day, there is no effective vaccine and medication for the virus itself as WHO and medical institutions all over the globe are still developing it.
Apart from becoming a medical issue, coronavirus has also become a socio-economic problem. In some countries, it even becomes a political issue. Not only the virus, but the regulations to combat the virus have become a controversial topic nowadays.
Considering the confusion within the society as well as the governments, many people believe that media has overblown the issue. Some even say that the media are over-exaggerating the problem. Is that really so?
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Media Coronavirus News According to Experts
Media has been aggressively informing the public about the coronavirus ever since the end of 2019. Starting from updating the origin, transmission, and the fight against the virus, media covers everything.
However, sometimes the news are indeed over-exaggerating. For instance, media coverage about possible coronavirus mutations just make the public more anxious rather than cautious, according to coronavirus scientist Lisa Gralinski of the University of North Carolina.
What the People Sincerely Say
Statista published a public survey pertaining to public opinions regarding media exaggeration on COVID-19 coverage. In the global survey, almost half of the respondents in each respective countries agrees that they are exaggerating. Some are even above 50%.
India, which experienced the biggest nationwide coronavirus lockdown ever, indicated that 73% of its people believes that the media indeed exaggerated the issue.
Distrust of the Government
Anti-lockdown protests have emerged in countries in Europe and the US. The protesters go on rallies mainly because they have a distrust of the government.
That said, Pew Research Center conducted a study that the majority of people in the US who go into anti-lockdown protests distrusts the media for their over-exaggeration.