How to report Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Fake News

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Viral misinformation and fake news pose the biggest risk for the spread of the Novel Coronavirus in South Africa and the rest of the world. If not attended to, fake news and misinformation will lead to tens of thousands of deaths.

The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) has gazetted regulations that grant the government powers to act against those who deliberately endanger themselves and others during the pandemic.

The new regulations prohibit deliberately infecting others with the coronavirus, or spreading fake news about the virus.

Any person found guilty of spreading fake news is liable to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both a fine and imprisonment. Deliberate spreading of Covid-19 would result in the person being charged with either assault, attempted murder or murder

What are Fake News?

“Fake News” means statements made with the intention to deceive as contemplated in the Disaster Management Regulations, 2020

What are the types of Fake News?

  • Disinformation: Information that is false and deliberately created to harm a person, social group, organization or country for the purposes to influence public opinion or obscure the truth.
  • Misinformation: Information that is false but not created to cause harm or misleading readers.
  • Mal-Information: Deliberate publication of private information for personal or private interest, as well as the deliberate manipulation of genuine content.

How do I report Fake News?

[e-mail] [email protected]
[whatsapp] 067 966 4015

What information must I include when reporting Fake News?

The social media post, article or document deemed to be Fake News.
A link to where the post, article or document is located.

The Directions came into effect on 26 March 2020 and will remain in effect for the duration of COVD-19 disaster period

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Sibahle Zondo

I am Sibahle from KwaNongoma, in KwaZulu Natal but currently based in Johannesburg. Despite having a career in tennis cut short by a chronic lack of talent, I managed to pursue a degree in Journalism. For any queries, please drop me an email at [email protected]