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Kim Kardashian West, other celebrities to freeze Facebook and Instagram accounts in protest

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Kim Kardashian West, other celebrities to freeze Facebook and Instagram accounts in protest

The reality television star Kim Kardashian West, actor Mark Ruffalo and several other celebrities said Tuesday that they are “freezing” their Facebook and Instagram accounts for one day to protest the spread of hate speech and misinformation on those platforms.

The protest, which will happen Wednesday, is part of the Stop Hate for Profit campaign, a coalition of civil rights groups, including the NAACP, Color of Change and the Anti-Defamation League, that led a monthlong advertising boycott against Facebook in July following the death of George Floyd in the custody of Minneapolis police. More than 1,200 companies joined that boycott, including big brands such as Unilever, Verizon, Adidas and Ford.

That coalition announced Monday that it was launching “a coordinated week of action on Instagram this week,” including “a one-day freeze on Instagram sharing as well as a weeklong series of posts … calling out Facebook for its role in inciting violence, spreading racism and hate, and contributing to electoral disinformation.”

The protest first gained widespread attention with a tweet from Kardashian West, who has one of the largest followings on Instagram and often gets paid to promote products on her account. She has said she’s been offered as much as $1 million for a single post.

“I love that I can connect directly with you through Instagram and Facebook, but I can’t sit by and stay silent while these platforms continue to allow the spreading of hate, propaganda and misinformation – created by groups to sow division and split America apart – only to take steps after people are killed,” she tweeted.

Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment regarding the protest.

Sacha Baron Cohen, an actor and comedian who has been an outspoken critic of social media companies, also tweeted his support of the protest.

“Facebook – stop spreading the hate, lies and conspiracies that inflame our societies!” he wrote.

Whether a one-day boycott will have any tangible effect on Facebook is very much in doubt. Facebook has been the subject of various boycotts for years, though few have demonstrated any long-term effect on the company. The Stop Hate for Profit campaign launched earlier this year convinced many big-name advertisers to pause their spending on the platform, but even that did little to hit the company’s business.

The threat of the advertising boycott caused a minor drop in Facebook’s share price at the end of June that recovered by the time the boycott started in July.

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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Doctors aren’t pushing an ‘untested’ seasonal flu vaccine for the coronavirus

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Fact check: Doctors aren't pushing an 'untested' seasonal flu vaccine for the coronavirus

The claim: Doctors are pushing an ‘untested’ flu vaccine with a ‘very low strain’ of the coronavirus in it

As flu season nears, doctors around the country are advocating that people receive the seasonal influenza vaccine, which health experts say is more important than usual amid the COVID-19 pandemic. They say having more defenses against the seasonal flu will help put less strain on the medical system, which will then help the country have more capacity to combat the novel coronavirus. 

But some claims on social media have advised against taking the vaccine by incorrectly conflating the flu shot with a potential vaccine for the coronavirus, the latter of which is still in development.

Facebook user Madyson Marquette on Sept. 15 posted what she said was an exchange with her son’s pediatrician regarding the flu shot. During the exchange, she said, her son’s doctor told her the strain of the flu for the shot was “Covid, but a very low strain of it.” The implication is that “Covid” is referring to the coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, the disease that has killed nearly 200,000 Americans.

Marquette’s post says she told the doctor she wouldn’t give her child an “untested Covid flu shot.” She alleges the doctor said they were pushing it because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is asking them to. 

“Wake UP and for all (that) is Holy DO NOT GIVE your children a Covid vaccine!!” her post said. 

Marquette’s post had more than 7,000 shares as of Friday afternoon. She did not return a USA TODAY request for additional information. 

More: How the CDC failed public health officials fighting the coronavirus

The coronavirus is not a strain of the flu, and it’s not in the flu shot

Both the seasonal flu and the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, are viruses that can cause fever, cough, shortness of breath and other symptoms. 

But SARS-CoV-2 is not a strain of the flu. Instead, it’s part of a family of coronaviruses that includes some that give people upper respiratory illnesses. Experts say the novel coronavirus is also much deadlier than the seasonal flu.

This year’s flu shot neither contains the coronavirus, nor elements meant to protect people from it. 

More: Data, data and more data will make a coronavirus vaccine safe, USA TODAY’s vaccine panel says

Each year, researchers update the flu shot in order to protect those who receive it from strains of the influenza virus. The shot protects against either three strains (trivalent) or four strains (quadrivalent). Changes for the 2020-2021 flu vaccine include modified components to combat some updated flu strains, but there are no additions to the shot listed to combat coronaviruses, according to the CDC’s website.

A Reuters fact-check that reviewed the contents of flu vaccines approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration found none contained SARS-CoV-2 or other coronaviruses.

The FDA tests and approves all influenza vaccines, according to the CDC, meaning no child or adult would be offered an “untested” flu shot by a doctor. 

The flu shot, explained: It’s crucial to get a flu shot this year amid the coronavirus pandemic, doctors say

Also, neither the CDC nor any physician is pushing a coronavirus vaccine because there isn’t one to push. The vaccine remains under development, and it’s unknown for sure when one will become widely available in the United States. 

According to the New York Times’ Coronavirus Vaccine Tracker, 40 vaccines are in clinical trials on humans, and at least 92 are being tested on animals. Some vaccines in China and Russia have been approved for early or limited use, but none has reached the point of being administered to the American public. 

Medical professionals have also debunked the idea that those who take the flu vaccine would be more likely to test positive for the coronavirus or become sick with it. According to the CDC, there’s no evidence that either would occur. The CDC also says the flu vaccine will not protect against catching the coronavirus. 

Our ruling: False

While the exact wording of the verbal exchange between the author of the Facebook post and her son’s pediatrician is unknown, her post contains multiple false claims. 

COVID-19 is not a strain of the flu — it’s a coronavirus — and would not be present in a seasonal flu vaccine. The current flu shot does not contain the novel coronavirus, nor is there evidence that receiving the shot would increase or decrease a person’s chances of catching COVID-19. Each flu shot is scrutinized and approved by the FDA, so it’s not “untested.” And, no coronavirus vaccine has made it beyond the clinical trial stage in the U.S., and is thus not available to the public at this point.

For those reasons, we rate this post as FALSE. 

Our fact-check sources: 

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, July 12, 2018, When is flu season

  • USA Today, Aug. 17, A flu shot doesn’t always protect you, but amid the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s more important than ever

  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Sept. 18, Coronavirus resource center

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Aug. 31, What is the difference between influenza (flu) and COVID-19? 

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Aug. 31, Influenza (flu): What you need to know for 2020-21

  • Reuters, Sept. 18, Fact-check: The flu vaccine is not an untested COVID-19

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Sept. 10, Influenza (flu): How flu vaccines are made

  • USA Today, Sept. 17, Data, data and more data will make a coronavirus vaccine safe, USA TODAY’s vaccine panel says

  • The New York Times, Sept. 18, Coronavirus vaccine tracker

  • USA Today, April 1, Fact check: Getting the flu shot doesn’t make you more (or less) likely to get the coronavirus

Ian Richardson covers the Iowa Statehouse for the Des Moines Register. Reach him at irichardson@registermedia.com, or on Twitter at @DMRIanR.

Thank you for supporting our journalism. You can subscribe to our print edition, ad-free app or electronic newspaper replica here.

Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Flu shot is not an ‘untested’ vaccine to fight COVID-19

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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Permian in for Bright Future and More

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Permian in for Bright Future and More

This article was first published on Rigzone here

Here are some of Rigzone’s top upstream stories during the last week, just in case you missed them…

Permian in for Prosperous and Bright Future

According to a new report from the Permian Strategic Partnership, the Permian Basin’s future is prosperous and bright. The report outlined that the region will remain an energy epicenter for decades to come but warned that investment was necessary.

Read full article here

Big Bank Makes Bullish Oil Prediction

Oil prices will get back up to $60 per barrel before the end of next year, Citigroup Inc outlined. The move may not last long though, according to Citi.

Read full article here

Oilfield Services Poised for Transformation

One of Rigzone’s regular market watchers predicts that lasting changes are likely on the horizon in the oilfield services and equipment industry.

Read full article here

BP and Shell Call on Texas to End Routine Flaring

Bloomberg reported that BP and Royal Dutch Shell urged Texas regulators to end the routine flaring of natural gas. The companies are calling for tougher rules than those proposed by the Railroad Commission of Texas, Bloomberg outlined.

Read full article here

Take control of your future.
Search THOUSANDS of Oil & Gas jobs on Rigzone.com
Search Now >>

Petrofac Bags Multimillion Dollar Ithaca Deal

Petrofac’s Engineering and Production Services business has netted a multi-million dollar integrated services contract with Ithaca Energy. Under the new five-year deal, Petrofac will integrate operations, maintenance, engineering, construction and onshore and offshore technical support across Ithaca’s North Sea operated asset base. 

Read full article here

Oil Price Adjustment Was Overdue

From a fundamental basis, the recent oil price adjustment that saw prices slip by over $5 per barrel was overdue, according to oil and gas analysts at Standard Chartered.

Read full article here

Apache and Total Evaluate Suriname Discovery

Apache and Total have updated the technical evaluation of their Kwaskwasi-1 discovery well in Block 58 offshore Suriname.

Read full article here

To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com

More From Rigzone.com, The Leading Energy Platform:

>> Find the latest oil and gas jobs on Rigzone.com <<

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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US carrier enters Gulf amid sanctions threats toward Iran

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US carrier enters Gulf amid sanctions threats toward Iran

A US aircraft carrier passed the Strait of Hormuz to enter the Gulf Friday amid Washington threats to enforce “UN” sanctions without the backing of Security Council partners, the Navy announced.

A strike group led by the USS Nimitz and including two guided-missile cruisers and a guided-missile destroyer sailed into the Gulf to operate and train with US partners and support the coalition fighting the Islamic State group, the US 5th Fleet said in a statement.

“The Nimitz Strike Group has been operating in the 5th Fleet area of operations since July, and is at the peak of readiness,” said strike group commander Rear Admiral Jim Kirk.

The move came just days after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo vowed to enforce an arms embargo and other international sanctions against Iran which the US says will resume on Saturday. 

On Tuesday Pompeo vowed that Washington would prevent Iran from purchasing Chinese and Russian military equipment, even as European allies disagreed with Washington’s stance.

“We are going to act in a way -– and we have acted in a way –- that will prevent Iran from being able to purchase Chinese tanks and Russian air defense systems and resell weapons to Hezbollah,”Pompeo said.

And on Wednesday he said the United States will enforce resumed United Nations sanctions on Iran starting next week, despite nearly the entire UN Security Council saying Washington does not have the grounds to do so.

“We’ll do all the things we need to do to make sure that those sanctions are enforced,” Pompeo said.

The United States regularly sends aircraft carrier groups into the Gulf for exercises and to support US and anti-IS coalition operations in Iraq and Syria.

But the Trump administration has sought to step up pressure on Tehran.

According to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Iran has stepped up its nuclear development activities since the United States unilaterally withdrew from the 2018 nuclear accord.

Washington says that despite its withdrawal, it has the right to force the UN to reimpose sanctions on Iran for violating the agreement.

pmh/ec

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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