Real411 Reviewers

Posted on 16th Jul 2021



Disinformation on Covid-19 cures!

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One of the common trends over the past few weeks have been complaints about Ivermectin. It has been touted as a miracle drug, to cure Covid-19, or as an effective preventative tool to be taken prophylactically. Some complaints relate to content suggesting that it should be used with a range of other over-the-counter medications from […]


Weekly trends

Posted on 6th Jul 2021

This week two cases point to the real-life, or at least outside of digital real-life, impact of disinformation. The first is about an advert in Cape Town so terrible that the case was actually reported to Real411. It was picked up by one of the amazing Real411 reviewers, Robyn Porteous, who decided to do something about it. The second case […]


An exercise in hate

Posted on 30th Jun 2021

Over the past week, as we continued dealing with largely Covid-19-related disinformation (about how those who promote vaccines are guilty of a silent holocaust and other such denialists fodder), another set of complaints highlighted an even more crass expression of hate.  #OperationDudula. In essence it was a plan to forcibly remove non-South Africans from Soweto. […]


The decuplets

Posted on 22nd Jun 2021

It should have been a good story, a remarkable one even, a woman giving birth to a world record number of babies and they all survived. Instead, like the smell of fried fish, it clings, sullying more than just the media concerned. Some have said the story is indicative of the poor quality of our […]


Deny, deny, deny

Posted on 17th Jun 2021

One striking aspect of disinformation is how seemingly patently unbelievable it is. Suggesting, for example, that Covid-19 isn’t real or deadly, or that the holocaust didn’t happen, are so far removed from reality it seems scarcely plausible that anyone would take them seriously. In previous pieces we have looked at the reasons that some people […]


From ‘quacks’ to quackers, anti-vaxxers and banning Twitter

Posted on 9th Jun 2021

This week we look at some of the anti-vaccine complaints recently received. A common approach for anti-vaxxers is to stress how vaccines won’t work or how they have deadly side effects. This week, two of these examples were on show. In the first complaint we see an effort to give their fear mongering credibility. Quotes of Nobel […]


Real411 combats disinformation – how exactly does it do this?

Posted on 2nd Jun 2021

The Real411 platform has been receiving complaints related to disinformation, hate speech, incitement to violence and harassment of journalists since March 2020. Over the past week or two, we have received a number of questions about how Real411 works, what happens once a complaint has been assessed and how credible the system is. We thought […]


Trust and disinformation !

Posted on 24th May 2021

The Real411 platform has been receiving complaints related to disinformation, hate speech, incitement to violence and harassment of journalists, since March 2020. Since then, the platform has received just under 1,400 complaints, the majority of which have been in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic.  The platform also receives complaints relating to a number of different […]


Strange bedfellows: Covid fruit-cakery, and Politics

Posted on 19th May 2021

This past week we have had some disinformation reported that isn’t just bonkers, it’s like the clown from Stephen King’s It took hallucinogens. This is one of them. We noted in earlier pieces how one of the aspects about disinformation that makes it enticing is that it helps explain and reduce the complex into the simple, or into evil […]