You may have seen an article shared recently about the new Harvard tool that helps fact-check cancer claims, but did you know that in the past month alone, over 2 million people shared the story? It all started with this article from The Guardian titled, Harvard scientists develop tool to fact-check anti-vax stories which was shared over 82 thousand times on Facebook alone. But as more and more people started sharing it without checking the facts, they began to realize that something was wrong with this story… So what did they do next? They called us!
The Dr. Google problem
We’ve all been there – you have a nagging feeling or a weird symptom and instead of making an appointment with a doctor, you turn to Dr. Google. A few clicks later and you’re convinced you have a rare and incurable disease. Or, even worse, that your time is limited.Stop the cycle of internet-induced hypochondria and check out this new tool from Harvard researchers before your next health freak-out.
The challenge of information overload
It’s no secret that we live in an age of information overload. With social media, 24-hour news cycles, and a never-ending stream of content, it’s hard to know what to believe. And when it comes to sensitive topics like cancer, it’s important to get the facts before sharing them with others.
For example, while a lot of people are aware that too much sun exposure causes skin cancer, they may not realise that tanning beds can also cause skin cancer. Or they might think that it’s easy to tell if a mole is malignant. Unfortunately, more than 95% of melanomas are diagnosed in late stages when treatment options are limited and survival rates drop. But early detection can save lives—as long as information about risk factors and signs of melanoma is accurate and easily accessible.
The solution: IFTTT (If This Then That)
Cancer is a topic that is very important to a lot of people, and it can be hard to know what information to trust. A new tool from Harvard called IFTTT (If This Then That) can help with that. IFTTT allows users to input a claim about cancer and then checks it against a database of reputable sources. If the claim is found to be false, IFTTT will provide links to accurate information. This is a great way to make sure that you are sharing accurate information about cancer with your friends and family.
The new IFTTT (If This Then That) tool makes it easy for anyone to fact check information that they are about to share online. Simply enter a statement, and IFTTT will do all of the hard work for you. It automatically searches reputable sources to verify if your claim is true or false. The IFTTT team did extensive research on their database of reputable sources, but if there are any missing from their list feel free to add them in an update. When using IFTTT, just remember not everything on social media is true and keep your critical thinking skills sharp.
Fact-checking with IFTTT
It’s important to be skeptical of health claims we see online, especially when it comes to cancer. A new tool from Harvard University can help us sort the wheat from the chaff.
The Science Media Centre (SMC) in London and Integrative Network Therapy (INT) at Harvard University have teamed up to create a new tool that enables us to quickly fact-check scientific research, using an IFTTT account. It is intended for a lay audience so that people can use it as they would any other social media sharing service like Facebook or Twitter. The INT – formerly known as the Templeton Foundation’s program on public understanding of science and technology – has been funded by Templeton since 1994, and one of its primary goals is to improve critical thinking skills, particularly when it comes to risk peception.
Get the app on your phone or computer!
There’s a new tool available to help you fact-check cancer claims, and it’s called the Cancer Claim Credibility Checker. The app was developed by Harvard Medical School and is available for free on both iOS and Android.
Cancer is a popular topic on social media, with over 600 million Facebook users posting content that has to do with cancer in just one month. However, medical claims being posted are often false or misleading. The CCC was developed by researchers from Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and is based on a database of 800 articles about topics such as chemotherapy and survival rates for different types of cancers. If a user chooses a specific claim that they want checked, such as eating high fiber foods can reduce your risk of getting colorectal cancer, then all posts relating to that claim will be downloaded from Twitter and Facebook for analysis.