Talk:COVID-19 pandemic/Archive1

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This is an archive page, last updated 12 January 2022. Please do not make edits to this page.
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Face masks[edit]

There's been quite a bit in the media about the (in)effectiveness of face masks and other methods of supposedly preventing airborne viruses; this goes beyond the current Coronavirus outbreak to influenza etc but could be covered either here or in a separate article.[1][2][3] Handwashing is also on the TODO list I think. --Annanoon (talk) 09:48, 24 February 2020 (UTC)

A compilation of research publication on face masks [4], curated by Jeremy Howard [5] — Unsigned, by: Holydemon / talk / contribs

Silver ranking[edit]

I believe the article is already of high enough quality to skip bronze entirely and jump straight to silver. Any objections? Minish (talk) 20:48, 28 February 2020 (UTC)

I second the motion.G Man (talk) 19:03, 11 April 2020 (UTC)

Infection rates[edit]

There appears to be a high rate of 'low visibility infection' (few or no symptoms), and the disease's main impact seems on the old and the already ill (as is often the case with such diseases).

However - it does not seem to be affecting children. Why? Anna Livia (talk) 19:14, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

Okay, give me 15 immunology phds 6 months, and a $20 million research budget and I'll tell you. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:28, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Set it up and give me 'a few bob' for bringing your attention to the subject.
In six months coronavirus will be as forgotten as the 'outbreak of flesh eating virus' of a while back, and there will be some other disease filling the newspapers/TV programs. Anna Livia (talk) 19:35, 3 March 2020 (UTC)
Maybe it'll be forgotten. Also possible is that it'll be another flu, endemic to many places. Still forgotten by the media and everyone panicking today. But also still killing people. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:32, 3 March 2020 (UTC)

I hope this doesn't turn into another Brexit article[edit]

We are not very good at covering live issues. Editors have a tendency to add whatever happens to be going on at the moment. If you would like a good example of the problems this can cause look at the Brexit article. It really needs to be rewritten from scratch. With regard to Covid, whatever is happening in any particular country now will almost certainly not be relevant in a year's time and will probably need to be deleted when a more global historic overview is needed.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 11:15, 4 March 2020 (UTC)

honestly a RW article on the subject should just mostly focus on conspiracy theories like "It came from a weapons lab" or similar. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 13:36, 4 March 2020 (UTC)
This is true.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 11:01, 5 March 2020 (UTC)

Falsehoods spread over social media[edit]

A group I'm a part of has been hit with the Japanese doctor one. They're quite popular! (talk) 16:04, 13 March 2020 (UTC)

Consequences of the outbreak[edit]

Perhaps there should be some coverage already.

The most obvious:

  • The impact of deferred sports events, music festivals etc.
  • Refinements in government contingency planning for large scale outbreaks of disease and pandemics of equal or greater impact.
  • An increase in the birth rate Christmas 2020-Spring 2021.

Others? Anna Livia (talk) 13:05, 19 March 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia Seriously weakened economies, e.g. deferment of the 'Made in China 2025' initiative, major healthcare reforms in order to cut costs and deficits. What makes you think there will be a baby boom later on? A lot of people talked about this but I do not find their reasoning satisfying. Sure, it would seem that way if you look at historical data. But the modern world is different in one key way: contraception is now more widely available than ever before. A post-pandemic baby boom is a curve that could be flattened. Nerd (talk) 18:51, 19 March 2020 (UTC)
A known phenomenon - at random [6], [7], [8] and [9]. (There are also claims that forcing families to spend extended periods of time together due to CV will result in increased divorces - which apparently happens after Christmas breaks).

My second point is not a conspiracy theory (but what governments etc should be doing). Anna Livia (talk) 19:26, 19 March 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia Ha ha! I am not that affected by the culture of Rational Wiki. (I have not been active here.) I will not accuse you of this and that just because you have an idea I disagree with. A more thorough analysis suggests that it depends on the fatality rate and which country you are looking at. But I agree about the possible spike in divorce rates. Getting stuck with many people in confined space can be a stressful experience. People shall demand freedom after that.
Moreover, immigration, international tourism, and international trade will change. Nationalism and self-sufficiency will become more popular. Nerd (talk) 20:56, 19 March 2020 (UTC)
I operate in various bits of the wikiverse etc (under various pen-names) and have Britviews.
I was starting a discussion off, and quoting a factoid (which may be partially true). Anna Livia (talk) 23:17, 19 March 2020 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜ There was reportedly no panic-buying in South Korea. Other countries could learn from this. Nerd (talk) 14:38, 21 March 2020 (UTC)

It appears a baby boom is possible within a couple years, another article suggests. How well the economy recovers plays a key role. Italy, Spain, Germany, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Australia could all use a baby boom after this. They all have aging populations, especially the first four. Nerd (talk) 00:47, 9 April 2020 (UTC)

China question[edit]

It is said that there have been no new deaths - is this likely/plausible, fake news, or the deaths being assigned to the 'underlying cause' (which seems to be a factor in deaths from CV)? Anna Livia (talk) 18:58, 21 March 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia On one hand, China's declining infection rate appears plausible, given that South Korea, Japan, and Singapore are all experiencing the same phenomenon. They were the first to get hit, so they are the first to get out. However, China's official numbers are sketchy, and the exact number is probably higher. The Communist Party desperately needs a victory in its "people's war" against the Wuhan flu in order to alleviate public anger. This analysis assumes no secondary rounds of infections (due to relaxed quarantine requirements and/or mutations that enable the virus spread more easily or to become more potent). Nerd (talk) 20:08, 21 March 2020 (UTC)
I can see the several factors playing parts (and 'fake news' can blend into 'being economical with the truth'/how the statistics are presented - going from 4 to 8 #is# a 100% increase).
To what extent is the main problem not knowing how many people are infected but having only low level symptoms and a sufficiently strong 'dose' of the infection to acquire appropriate immunity (until the virus mutates). Anna Livia (talk) 23:07, 21 March 2020 (UTC)
@Anna Livia Given that test kits are in short supply, it is difficult to know at this point how many are actually infected but remain asymptomatic. But once this pandemic is over, we will probably have a better idea. Scientists would have more data to work with and the benefit of hindsight. Right now, the tracker from John Hopkins University suggests the growth of infection is indeed exponential. Nerd (talk) 16:02, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
I'm inclined to believe the Chinese. But the problem they have is that is's a global issue. Look at what happened to Hong Hong when they took off the brakes.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 16:36, 23 March 2020 (UTC)

β”Œβ”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜ The official death toll for the ill-fated City of Wuhan jumped 50%. Ouch! The actually number is likely much higher. Nerd (talk) 02:10, 20 April 2020 (UTC)

Question 2[edit]

Given that COVID appears to have 'species jumped' through a live animal market - could it have been endemic as a relatively harmless disease sometimes caught by humans - the 'cowpox version' (so there will be a degree of partial immunity in some Chinese populations), and then mutated into a more virulent version - the 'smallpox version' which is what we are seeing now? (I know they are different diseases but using an analogy). Anna Livia (talk) 13:12, 23 March 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia The Wuhan flu is indeed an example of something caused by a zoonotic pathogen. As many countries in Africa and Asia continue to industrialize and urbanize, we can expect more to originate from these places. Scientists think that the Wuhan coronavirus has already mutated to be different from SARS but closer to HIV. Nerd (talk) 15:57, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
My question is slightly different - did the disease 'jump' in two different forms, initially 'mild' and then the current version. Anna Livia (talk) 19:47, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
It is in the nature of viruses to mutate. My understanding is that when they jump species they mutate in three ways. First they mutate to become better at reproducing within the initial human host. If they get the chance to spread then they mutate to become both more infectious and less dangerous. But I'm just some random bloke on the internet and not a doctor.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 10:49, 28 March 2020 (UTC)


@Nerd, could you stop calling it the 'Wuhan flu'? That is not the medical terminology, and calling it that feeds into racist ideology.[10][11] Bongolian (talk) 18:00, 23 March 2020 (UTC)

@Bongolian Surely you have heard of names like the Spanish flu, German measles, Japanese encephalitis, the Stockholm syndrome, the Zika virus, the Ebola virus, the Asian flu, the Hong Kong flu, the West Nile virus, and the African swine fever. This falls under WP:COMMONNAME. Some folks tried to change the name of the Wikipedia page for Spanish fluWikipedia by the same line of reasoning, that is is not "proper" medical terminology but failed due to a wall of resistance. People clearly saw where this was coming from and some openly called it out. Just because we name a disease after a place does not mean we equate the people living there with pathogens or disease. There are plenty of precedents. Calling it the coronavirus is inadequate since the word 'coronavirus' denotes an entire class of viruses. SARS was caused by the coronavirus, for example. That is why this one is officially named SARS-CoV-2. Given that Africa and Asia will continue to industrialize and urbanize, there will likely be plenty more zoonotic coronaviruses (coming from these regions). Please see the link I shared above; the article is from a clinical microbiologist.
Lastly, we should be more concerned the effects of COVID-19 than speech policing. The public needs a name they can remember, and if they check your favorite search engines, the term you seek to erase is not that uncommonly used. Try the auto-complete function and you will see. Nerd (talk) 18:26, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
Did you read either of the citations that I gave? Particularly:[12]
β€œβ€But the Spanish flu didn’t get that name (real name: H1N1!) because it started in Spain. It actually started in Kansas. It became commonly known as the Spanish flu because in the middle of World War I, in which Spain remained neutral, Spain was one of the only Western nations willing to report frankly on the pandemic.
β€œβ€The world has been trying to move past the racist disease-naming conventions of the past in recent years, making it all the more telling that Trump has revived them in a moment of crisis. He might be annoyed that Chinese officials and media have, for their part, tried to blame the virus on America.
β€œβ€There is a long history of racializing pandemics by attaching them to a specific place and people, othering a pathogen that originated in another land in much the same way white Americans have historically othered people of color who came to (or whose ancestors came to) the United States from somewhere else. Trump’s comments are yet another example of this lamentable instinct and another illustration of his xenophobia in office. This is the same president who referred to some African countries as β€œshitholes” in advocating for restrictive immigration policies.
Bongolian (talk) 18:35, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
Yes, I know that the Spanish flu got its name because Spain was able to report its infections accurately, being a neutral party during the Great War. Similarly, the disease in question was first reported in Wuhan, so we name it after that place. Frankly, I do not care about their attempts at speech-policing given the precedents. Again, not all of us think along racist lines. Just because we name a disease after a certain place does not mean we hate the people living there. To use a completely different example, we keeping saying jellyfish even though we know it is not a fish. Common names are easier to remember than technical names. Again, there will be plenty more coronaviruses if that microbiologist is correct.
Of course the Chinese Communists will try to blame it one someone else. I remember reading articles or watching reports from late November or December 2019 about the rise of a new respiratory disease in China. They downplayed and covered it up for weeks so now we have a pandemic. Nerd (talk) 18:47, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
COVID, covid, coronavirus, and corona virus are all in common use, so there's really no need to refer to it based on its origin. Bongolian (talk) 18:50, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
COVID stands for China-originated viral infections disease coronavirus disease. Given that there will be more of these, such a name is not good enough. The King of viruses shall return! Why not name it after the place where it was first reported or the person or people who identified it? Look, I'll make you a deal out of respect for you as a long-time editor and moderator and someone who never called me names. When talking to you, I shall refrain from using that name. But I ask that you refrain from speech-policing on this issue outside of this platform. You are probably experienced enough to realize you will probably fail. Nerd (talk) 19:02, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
Fine. Bongolian (talk) 19:06, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
And what about 'the French etc disease'? Anna Livia (talk) 19:51, 23 March 2020 (UTC)
No, the moment the fact got out that the Coronavirus, or Wuhan CoVir, had come from China, Racist ideology was already fed. Nothing you or I can do about it, unless deception is justified for that end. Also, the US is home to 6 uniquely American diseases (Heartland fever, Rocky Mountains, Valley, Norovirus, Lyme, and Legionnaires). So, this insistence on not calling Wuhan CoVir by its place of origin, 'cos it might be racist, is a flawed idea with weak moral weight and weaker logical support, and an excuse by CCP propagandists to evade responsibility or association. Calling a disease by its location of origin is valid and isn't racist. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

There are a number of diseases which are called after their 'point of apparent origin/where they were first identified etc' (Rocky Mountain, Legionnaires) - and if other forms of this variety of Covid (ie corona virus not the backformation above) emerge then geographic naming could be appropriate; however the 'French etc disease' was meant to be abusive. Anna Livia (talk) 13:18, 6 April 2020 (UTC)

how are legionairres, lymes, and norovirus uniquely American? AMassiveGay (talk) 13:50, 6 April 2020 (UTC)
also, the place of origin is kind of irrelevant as tis corona virus is worldwide, and its only racists still insisting on the origin naming convention AMassiveGay (talk) 13:53, 6 April 2020 (UTC)
I think in modern times this "calling disease by place of origin" has been discouraged, in part because people have gotten things massively wrong before ("Spanish flu" being the most notorious example). "Coronavirus" was the terminology most in use before it was officially named, even though that is a misnomer since there are multiple coronavirus species. COVID-19 also has also caught on as a term of common use after the virus was officially named. After February 2020 the only place I find the term "Wuhan virus" in use is from United States Republican politicians who were looking to score political bullshit brownie points. (TBH using silly logic like this, we might as well call it the "US virus" or "Republican virus" at this point since we have the most cases, and much of the fault for that could squarely be pointed at US Republican politicians who dismissed this virus as a hoax.) (talk) 15:49, 6 April 2020 (UTC)

@Anna Livia Your mentioning of France makes me think of the Dutch elm disease. @AMassiveGay Nope. We typically name a disease after a place where it was first reported. Naming a disease after a place is not necessarily discriminatory. If we can use names like Spanish flu, German measles, Japanese encephalitis, the Stockholm syndrome, the Zika virus, the Ebola virus, the Asian flu, the Hong Kong flu, the West Nile virus, and the African swine fever, we can call it the Chinese virus. Non-racists will obviously not equate people with pathogens. Oh, and calling it the coronavirus makes no sense since the word 'coronavirus' denotes an entire classification of viruses. SARS was caused by a coronavirus. The one causing the Wuhan flu is named SARS-CoV-2. Nerd (talk) 00:44, 9 April 2020 (UTC)

well, its covid-19 according to WHO and their naming convention which states geographic locations should not be used. interestingly, Spanish flu is give as an example to be avoided. just because it has been how things were done does not mean we should continue. racist associations were clearly made early on, as evidenced, in the uk at least, by racist attacks. reporting was very much centred on chia and Wuhan. the focus of reporting no longer has that focus and with many areas on lockdown, the number of dead continues to rise, businesses go under, jobs are lost, no end in sight and with economic fall out to be with us a whole lot longer, misinformation is rife and uncertainty is the only thing that is certain. people look for scapegoats to make sense of such things. its not unreasonable to imagine a geographic naming convention in such an atmosphere could lead to a rise in stigmatisation and xenophobia if you name this thing something that indelibly linked to a region or a people, and you see that thing everywhere. every where you look, you hear it a million times everywhere you go, indelibly linked to every indignity endured, every tragedy personal, national, and global, suffered through, as your job goes, your money goes and but bills still come, as do the deaths, all trapped in your own home with nothing to do but stew in fear and uncertainty, all he while the name of this thing is tattooed on your eyeballs and the sound of the constant tinnitus ringing in your ears. it does not seem a stretch to me that some negative associations might be formed. associations that might build on already existing prejudices. usage of 'Wuhan virus' by the few politicians Ive heard use it, and those that have explicitly sought to blame china and/or immigrants for all manner of things surrounding the virus seek to do just that. its been made harder for them to do as we can pointedly correct them.
btw the 'racists gonna be racist' argument is just facile. im sure racist folk need no excuse to be racist. I doubt though that many racists woke this morning and just thought they'd give this racism thing a go. negative associations and stereotypes are implicitly formed and we are often not even consciously aware they have been. with location so intrinsically and constantly linked to such a drawn out and profound catastrophe would bring nothing positive. and theres no reason to. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:46, 10 April 2020 (UTC)
The Spanish Flu was named in 1918, German Measles: 1814, Japanese encephalitis: 1871, Stockholm syndrome: 1973, Zika virus: 1947, Ebola virus: 1976 (interesting you should bring it up because the Ebola river was 69 miles away from the outbreak and the epidemiologist only chose the name to NOT harm the place it was actually found), the Asian flu: 1957, Hong Kong flu: 1968, West Nile virus: 1937, and African swine fever: 1907. In short, if you're going to appeal to tradition, try to find one that hasn't been out of favor for over 40 years. - Immigrant laborer (talk) 16:00, 10 April 2020 (UTC)
@AMassiveGay Of course the Wuhan flu is a global pandemic like the Spanish flu was. No one is denying that. Diseases can start in one place and spread around the globe. That certain public officials and journalists seem more interested in speech policing than containing a disease is frankly ridiculous. It was not long ago that phrases like "Wuhan coronavirus" or "Chinese coronavirus" were common in the media. But now they turn around and tell us that such names are this and that. Ha! Public trust in the media is declining in many countries, including the U.K. and the U.S., and this latest attempt at lecturing the public is not going to turn out well for them.
@Immigrant laborer This convention or tradition is out of favor? Surely not among the general public. It is also quite well established, so sticking to it is not a bad idea. Just because it is 'tradition' does not mean we should abandon it. Think about it. Do you use the scientific names of of a species or do you use a common name? Nerd (talk) 16:01, 11 April 2020 (UTC)
Nobody's saying abandon it because it's tradition; it should stay abandoned because it's racist as in it tars the 11 million people that live in Wuhan, 98 percent of whom are just trying to get through their day. Not even Fox news or the President still use it. If the people you hang out with still do, then, well, you may want to reconsider your friend choices. The last person I bumped into that was waving this banner couldn't hold out for more than 2 minutes before making the case that the name should be retained as a reminder of how evil Xi Jinping was. Your previous comments get pretty close to that stance as well. The Chinese government will be gone long before the virus is. - Immigrant laborer (talk) 16:36, 11 April 2020 (UTC)

What will happen[edit]

… with the (Irish) marching season? Anna Livia (talk) 13:01, 29 March 2020 (UTC)

The 'bowler hats' have decided to abandon or postpone the events. Anna Livia (talk) 12:03, 7 April 2020 (UTC)

COVID and 5G[edit]

Paraphrasing slightly - 'somebody I know' thinks that it is not the 5G towers that are the issue but that there is a possibility that the digging for the towers' foundations that stirs up 'bacteria and viruses' lying dormant in the ground - not necessarily COVID.

How plausible is this - I have come across a reference to the possibility of diseases being released from sealed coffins and then there is the 'Gruinard Island phenomenon.' Anna Livia (talk) 14:26, 7 April 2020 (UTC)

Don't bother with conspiratorial nonsense. Spend your time reading more sensible stuff. Nerd (talk) 00:45, 9 April 2020 (UTC)
The 5G tower-COVID is a conspiracy theory; 'dormant ancient diseases dispersed' is a possibility (a variant on this - who would be immune to the sweating sickness or smallpox?) - and 'bacteria or whatever' normally resident deep in the soil could affect people exposed to it when it is dug up. Anna Livia (talk) 11:22, 9 April 2020 (UTC)
How many things have we dug up in our cities? How many buildings, skyscrapers, roads, telephone poles, electricity pylons have we erected? How many bombs fell in the second world war? Yet suddenly building a telephone mast in respect of one specific technology is going to disturb this particular virus? A virus which, at best, can live only a few days outside a host? It's crazy.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:24, 9 April 2020 (UTC)
The question was about the relative probabilities - 'some disease causer' being released from deep in the earth/brought to the surface by spelunkers/being trapped in a coffin sealed against Resurrection Men and then released is possible (the tetanus and anthrax model) - 'some radio waves setting off a disease' is not. Anna Livia (talk) 22:46, 10 April 2020 (UTC)
That's not something I'd worry about. We didn't unleash diseases when building all of our other towers, I don't think the same would happen if we suddenly upgraded to 5G. Π‘aΠ±yΠ›uigiOΠ½Π€ireπŸš“(T|C) 19:31, 13 April 2020 (UTC)
The difference is - there are 'some disconnected factoids' for one possibility ('soil bugs etc', sealed coffins, Anthrax Island, London Underground mice and midges, deep cave creatures and 'bugs') so the answer is 'very low probability, not impossible, but very limited evidence of occurrence' and 'unproven, unfounded and unpossible.' Anna Livia (talk) 17:33, 14 April 2020 (UTC)
see Draft:5G, I just asked people on the RW Twitter to fill it out a bit - David Gerard (talk) 14:45, 14 April 2020 (UTC)

β€œThe virus is a hoax”[edit]

The theory that seems to be gaining traction among /pol/ and affiliated groups is that the virus is not actually dangerous, and no one is dying from it. I’m new here, what do we do? BunchHuggins (talk) 14:51, 15 April 2020 (UTC)BunchHuggins

Hi. And welcome. Do you have a link to something where they are claiming this? If you do they we should probably mention in in the article as I don't think anyone has called it a hoax since Trump did. Batshit crazy is always worth adding!Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 15:40, 15 April 2020 (UTC)

Captain Tom Moore[edit]

Can some mention be made of this gentleman (current moneys collected presently at over Β£7 million). Anna Livia (talk) 15:00, 15 April 2020 (UTC)

... and rising. Anna Livia (talk) 15:01, 16 April 2020 (UTC)
I'm not aware of anything "Rationalwiki mission worthy" about Tom Moore, in fact this guy seems rather opposite of a "Rationalwiki mission worthy" subject from all I've heard. The other WikiWikipedia has given him a page for his massive fundraising effort. (talk) 17:33, 16 April 2020 (UTC)
Mentioned on RationalWiki:What is going on with the coronavirus?. A good example (in both senses) of a meme going viral. Anna Livia (talk) 18:19, 16 April 2020 (UTC)
That works there, it is good news. (talk) 18:44, 16 April 2020 (UTC)
He fits the definition of the BritEnglish term 'a good egg.' Β£25million and counting; going to open a hospital by videolink, classes of schoolchildren are designing birthday cards for him, and his nomination to be given a title has been signed by a very large number of people. Not bad for someone who was totally unknown a couple of weeks ago. Anna Livia (talk) 14:28, 19 April 2020 (UTC)

Religious gatherings, faith and science in relation to the virus[edit]

The Associated Press have an interesting article on religion, science and COVID-19. Possibly some information on this could be used in this article? – AOAPJM (talk) 00:59, 16 April 2020 (UTC)

Using this and other articles I added an entire section on religious defiance of COVID-19 lockdowns. It ended up being pretty huge. Soundwave106 (talk) 16:17, 17 April 2020 (UTC)
Good work! Bongolian (talk) 16:28, 17 April 2020 (UTC)

Characterization of hydroxychloroquine as "snake oil"[edit]

This article refers to hydroxychloroquine as a "snake oil" treatment for COVID, despite studies that exist (1) (2) suggesting that it is effective in treating the coronavirus. (And no, I'm not talking about the Raoult studies either - I'm aware of their methodological flaws and the author's questionable background.) Although I would agree that it is an unproven treatment, and believe that Trump has overstated the scientific evidence in its favor, I think it would be a mistake to jump the gun and start calling it "snake oil" when so little evidence exists one way or the other about its efficacy. Ultimately, we will have to wait for clinical trial results to determine whether HCQ is an effective treatment or not. Until then, it would be ridiculous to place it in the same category as some of the genuinely fraudulent treatments like colloidal silver, cannabis, or being injected with disinfectant. RWNoob (talk) 16:56, 27 April 2020 (UTC)

This is true, but the problem is "unproven but potential remedy" ends up acting in a nearly similar fashion when touted as a miracle cure by "influencers" too soon. It's not pure bullshit "snake oil" but it's in that direction; if you have a better suggestion for a title that might work. ("Snake oil and unproven remedies" perhaps?)
Lopinavir/ritonavirWikipedia is mentioned in the "snake oil" section too and kind of falls under the same category. The executive summary that I see with LPVr is that although as a protease inhibitor it may have a little generic effect since biology is often never terribly exact, the main protein target of these drugs is not present in the COVID-19 RNA. (Other protease inhibitors *are* being reviewed, I understand.) Some people in China early on were hoarding this drug irregardless, per Reuters.
Hydroxychloroquine is to me even a worse suggestion in some ways; it's a drug from the old days (probably it was borne from taking quinine, the active ingredient of cinchona that was an old school traditional plant based med that actually worked a bit, and synthesizing a bunch of near-clones) so we don't even know the exact mechanism of action, and it has serious side effects to boot. It's not even the first line drug for malaria anymore (that would be atovaquone proguanil, two drugs which we seem to have a pretty good idea on how they work). So while hydroxychloroquine has a chance, it's probably not the best choice anymore; in fact, I doubt the current hot compound, remdesivir, will be top choice once new things are created for this virus specifically.
The problem is that since a national leader with a cult of personality of fans touted this, you're going to get idiots who parrot the president's talking points and look suspiciously at the better compounds that actually seem more promising. At this level, this honestly isn't that different than a snake oil salesman. Some nutritional supplements exist on very similar principles too -- you have a few small scale studies saying compound X may help boost condition Y in circumstance Z. Those studies might be true, but snake oil salesmen leech onto these nuggets and feed bro-science to the masses and now all of a sudden compound X is being touted in massive megadose vitamin amounts by (as an example) Dr. Oz on Oprah. It is a better situation than injecting bleach, but with all the potential problems of hydroxychloroquine, and the lack of off-label dosage guidance, I honestly think it would have been better if Trump promoted a sugar pill. Soundwave106 (talk) 19:01, 2 May 2020 (UTC)

Key actors in disinformation[edit]

might be good to have a section outlining some of the key proponents of misinformation eg Elon Musk, and JP Sears.

"Musk’s dissemination of misinformation about the virus is not without consequences. He has more than 33m followers on Twitter and a fan base that tends to exalt him as a cross between Tony Stark and God. A recent study published as a letter in the Journal of the American Medical Association Internal Medicine linked his tweet about chloroquine, an anti-malaria drug that was subsequently touted as a potential Covid-19 treatment by Donald Trump, to a dramatic surge in online demand for the prescription medication."

What do youse think? Might be good to get it down now as it happens and if it's not relevant then scrap later. Skinnytony1 (talk) 04:51, 11 May 2020 (UTC)

Musk's COVID-19 nonsense is noted on his page, but it definitely might be worth it to add to the "economy > health" section as well, his COVID-19 insanity seems to be making lots of headlines. JP Sears hasn't shown up in my news sources though, do you have some links that might be helpful here? Soundwave106 (talk) 12:18, 11 May 2020 (UTC)

Better to die than to lose money[edit]

why is the uk put in this section? its response has not been remotely similar, and the 'herd immunity' was abandoned long before infection and death rates blew up. in no way is the uk's response similar to the US or to Brazils, which have been characterised by denial and misinformation even as the death toll rises, and unlike the uk the us has had the production and diagnostic capacity to adequately test its people, but still chose not to.

why not spain in this section? why not Italy? why not france? despite not doing a whole different to these countries, the UK is somehow significantly worse than these countries, which have all had similar problems of a slow response and problems meeting testing goals. there seems to be an in built bias with the uk that I have found as result from, for me, English language sources examine the uk and its resonse in far greater detail than other comparable European countries. for example I cannot adequately compare france and the uks issues with testing as while I have found reams and reams of info in the uk, and I cannot find any info with the same depth for france beyond the flat statement 'it has had problems'. take a look at the uks wikipedia page on its response compared to frances or spains or any country that isn't English speaking and you can see how massive the uk's page is compared to the others.

it is true that the total number of deaths is greater in the uk, but deaths per million tells a different story (Belgium wins that one). if indeed uk is 'worse' than most other countries, then I would like see just how much worse, what it has been doing or not doing that that makes it so, and how much can attributed to the systemic differences of what is actually possible rather than simply a 'poor' response. comparisons to germany or south korea are not good comparisons either, especially when they were already in better prepared for such a pandemic in the first place regarding testing. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:44, 19 May 2020 (UTC)

uk's inclusion in this section is supported by only opinion backed up by an article that is complete dross misrepresenting the actual events and the reasons behind them. AMassiveGay (talk) 14:15, 19 May 2020 (UTC)
Boris Johnson probably deserves to be put somewhere due to his initial embrace of the questionable herd immunity strategy but he did reverse course around mid March, and the COVID-19 experience he had in which he apparently didn't take the disease seriously at first and resisted efforts, before having to be hooked to a ventilator -- he now seems to take the disease a lot more seriously I think (will have to find more details behind the paywalled article though). At least his recent strategy seems to be more cautious but I'd have to look at more articles. Either way, agree a rewrite is needed, I think someone added that around mid-March and the situation has changed a lot since then. Boris doesn't deserve to be lumped in with Trump / Republicans and Bolsonaro. (I'd also have to double check about the Mexico PM). Soundwave106 (talk) 15:19, 19 May 2020 (UTC)
if it needs to be put anywhere it should be in some kind analysis of the relatively slow responses to the pandemic in Europe where what we are experiencing is unprecedented compared to responses in parts of asia its an all too familiar an experience, having dealt with not just sars, but more severely effected by avian flu outbreaks outbreaks.
there should also be more focus on countries where their response has been keep death tolls low and look at why they have been so effective in their management of the crisis, and how realistically their approaches could be applied to areas where healthcare systems are organised significantly different ways or not so resilient to disruptions to supply chains.
case in point: germany, as the European example of best practice in this crisis and often used as the comparison of what the uk 'should have done', is credited for producing and administering of tests while the uk has been criticised for it failure to match this success, despite germany having the capacity for this while the uk just does not, aggravated by the fact reagents that are necessary for testing are produced in germany and in normal times where the uk sources them from. so germany can test, with supply chain disruption not an issue for them, while the uk, whose diagnostic ability is world class but not prepared for the scale that this pandemic requires, is condemned for being crippled by that disruption AMassiveGay (talk) 17:51, 19 May 2020 (UTC)
Sweden's "herd immunity" strategy seems to have failed spectacularly and Johnson's initial response (which could have lead in this direction) could point towards them, who actually implemented the idea in full. The trouble is "herd immunity" isn't exactly "snake oil" per se (it's misguided but not like injecting bleach) so it demands something we don't have in the article at this point. Probably a bird's eye analysis of the response might be best. Soundwave106 (talk) 20:12, 19 May 2020 (UTC)
it leaves a bad taste in my mouth feeling like I have to defend a prick like Johnson AMassiveGay (talk) 20:20, 19 May 2020 (UTC)
Since both Britain and Mexico came around to their senses in about mid-late March I think I'll at least remove them from that section. If we want to do a note on herd immunity and slow responses later, perhaps then it will be notable because both Mexico and Britain were a little slow and Johnson embraced herd immunity at first, but I don't think they quite fit what's covered here right now. Soundwave106 (talk) 02:02, 20 May 2020 (UTC)

Trump and tablets[edit]

I suppose anti-malaria tablets are slightly less dangerous than bleach (and he seems to have misunderstood the historical use of malaria to cure another disease entirely). Anna Livia (talk) 17:57, 19 May 2020 (UTC)

hes probably not even taking them for real. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:05, 19 May 2020 (UTC)
He -thinks- he's taking them. Five bucks they're candy-coated licorice. Semipenultimate (talk) 02:56, 20 May 2020 (UTC)
To clarify - I was making a specific historical reference rather than linking the two components. Anna Livia (talk) 12:41, 20 May 2020 (UTC)

Authoritarian pandemic and piss poor references[edit]

3rd paragraph in, starting with 'human rights groups warn...'. the first half of the paragraph says human rights groups are warning censorship and repression can deadly, with reporters without borders correlates with poor press freedoms with a poor covid response.

im sure some groups are saying this but rsf is certainly not, and certainly not in the referenced article. it says no such thing. it says the more authoritarian a country is, the more likely they are using covid to shutdown press freedoms, and temporary measure are feared to be permanent. it makes no mention of outcomes and responses to covid outside of this narrow focus, going over much of the ground in the previous paragraph.

the second paragraph summarises a nytimes article by a couple Harvard political scientists with the claim countries with illiberal populist leaders have the fast infection rate growth due to anti intellectualism, downplaying the severity and taking slower action.

the referenced article is flat out bullshit (what the fuck is it linking the uk with brazil and usa's responses?). piss poor and patently false explanations of whats actually happened and is happening. Harvard political scientists are apparently hacks, and they've got a book to sell too. the glaring examples of where their claims are false are 'exceptions' and hes got 'strong intuition'. strong intuition. fucking hack.

I was going to wait for comment, but the whole paragraph is bogus. I m deleting it. AMassiveGay (talk) 00:31, 4 June 2020 (UTC)

I'll give you the first one, but in the second one you are basically calling something bullshit with no good counterargument other than argumentum ad hominem. I may be sympathetic with data but not "Harvard political scientists are hacks because I am Internet armchair expert that says so". That's a flat out distrust of expertise because you didn't like what they said.
The problem with all countries mentioned -- *including* Britain -- is that they have done a poor job "flattening the curve". Currently daily case rates in Britain are much worse than all European countries I see, including countries like Spain and Italy who were hit hard earliest. The author of the article apparently has access to a 2 week moving average I can't find, which is disappointing, but this is where they are getting their top infection rate data from. The authors acknowledge this is an imperfect generalization, of course, due to some illiberal (generally pretend-democratic) countries getting control of the virus, but the key is those authoritarians actually trusted experts amazingly enough, which has not been a typical feature of the Trump-style populism that has swept many, many countries.
I suppose I'll wait for a better analyzed article that's more statistical because every conservative lapdog loves to complain about Harvard professors and the New York Times, and it would indeed be better to have something that is more numbers than observational (it's harder to argue against a solid mathematical / statistical approach). The key here is all those "is authoritarianism the answer?" articles you saw in late March after China got its shit together (after initially botching the crisis) were pretty much bullshit, and it's pretty clear that in some cases authoritarian and/or populist tendencies (particularly, perhaps, illiberal populists operating in liberal democracies) can do more harm than good. As for the link to the UK: Boris Johnson post catching COVID-19 may be doing a lot better, but I would half lump Boris Johnson pre-catching COVID 19 in with Bolsonaro and Trump. He wasn't telling people to inject bleach, granted, but he sure hesitated a *long* time to implement any sort of lockdown, and didn't really take things too seriously. This is similar to what happened with Manuel LΓ³pez Obrador in Mexico, who is a populist from the left. This, as we can see from the numbers today, was the wrong approach. Soundwave106 (talk) 01:23, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
the contention was illiberal populists is the problem, even when they are not having problems. or that Johnson is an illiberal populist, not that uk has been doing fine. examples given stick in the throat as gross exagerations (the idea of Johnson 'only recently' taking it seriously is bullshit - we are talking a matter of days difference with comparable countries in its response - the article came out in june btw, 'recently' makes it sound like last week. I am constantly surprised at who everyone disregards just how quickly this all moved - it feels like forever but really isnt). the sage minutes puts a lie to anti intellectualism and explains much of the delays and poor decisions - structurally and organisationally we literally could not do what required - years of neglect had hamstrng the nhs, zero testing capacity, and some of the advice to government was itself vague. the nytimes only gives vague talking points, to shoehorn into their claim. as for the countries it thinks handled things better and why - because they are not illiberal populists. that's it. and they have women as heads of state. but only the two specific examples they gave. that's tabloid bullshit right there. nothing about structurally more equipped and better prepared to begin with. ive been over this elsewhere, this article just repeats the same bullshit points illiberal populists being the root of all evil and corona, when the reality is all over the shop. im no fan of em, but 'illiberal populists = everything bad' is just fucking lazy, and the paragraph removed made it look like a legitimate point but was based on the claims of two hacks trying to force a link to a complex situation. and yes they are hacks.
the only thing i'd agree with was that countries with a strong and robust governance are more likely to have handled things better. no fucking shit AMassiveGay (talk) 02:17, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
it should also be noted that these hack opinions and cherry picked examples are not from the book being plugged, or it would seem any great work or research. its an opinion piece it seems. hacks. AMassiveGay (talk) 02:25, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
I reverted the edit because you're calling experienced Harvard political science professors "hacks" for making a political science observation that is consistent with their field of study. Google the names. I have some sympathy with modification but not after this. Stop with the fucking anti-intellectualism bullshit and make a fucking better argument, copy? You're doing Trump level fake news bullshit here. Soundwave106 (talk) 03:31, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
so they cant be hacks? the nytimes article is dross. its makes a bullshit point and makes it poorly. disagree? fine. but don't give me this anti intellectualism bullshit. I made my case. trump level? just fuck off AMassiveGay (talk) 03:47, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
seriously, whats your fucking problem here? I called them hacks? so the fuck what. AMassiveGay (talk) 04:01, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
It shows you are approaching this from bad faith. Would you call, say, Paul Krugman a "hack" in economics if he wrote a blog opinion on an economic subject that you didn't like? You could, but I'd dismiss you as an idiot right from the start, because Mr. Krugman has studied economics for much longer than you or I, and has been well noted for this. This is a near equivalent. These guys have wrote about authoritarian governments for a damn long time, and are professors in governance at a university considered one of the best in the world. That doesn't mean they can't be wrong, of course -- everyone can be. But the fact that you're calling them "hacks" right off the back makes me believe you have a non-rational reason for your argument. They are not "hacks" and any idiot can see that.
Besides, you're also defending Johnson, which I can't believe. The UK on current trends will have the worst response to COVID-19 of all European nations (nations like Spain and Italy got nailed worse, but they've flattened the curve, the UK hasn't), Boris Johnson pretty much wasn't listening to experts until he actually got the virus, and that's a big reason why the UK is so bad off. I mean, the Sage Minutes aren't worth a whole lot when the head of state is barely listening. It's not Trump or Bolsonaro but if the United Kingdom wasn't so busy with its Brexit insanity, you guys might have had a better chance (I honestly think Blair or Brown or Cameron or practically most of the PMs down the list would've done much better). Soundwave106 (talk) 13:14, 4 June 2020 (UTC)
so nothing nothing to do with what ive actually said? good to know. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:32, 6 June 2020 (UTC)
and i am not defending johnson. the article singles out for leaders putin, trump, bolsonaro, and johnson. while acknowledging the huge differences between these people, it says they all subscribe to a 'radical right illiberal populism'. explain to me how johnson fits here? if what is meant is authoritarian, then johnson does fit the bill.
its johnson's inclusion here that makes me doubt the validity of the claims. i am more familiar with johnson than i am with the others, which makes the examples used throughout not quite say what they suggest. the anti intellectual claim for example, links to trump and bolsonaro both firing or ignoring their own expert advisors, but for johnson, its links to the herd immunity, which isnt so much ignoring or downplaying expert advice, it listening to the wrong expert advice.
the article says they all flouted guidance for face masks. while trump and co have pointed refused face masks in all situations, johnson has been saying we will need facemasks when lockdown is lifted, and the guidance from WHO for people to wear masks in public was only announced yesterday - previously it had said there was no evidence of their effectiveness, and risked giving people a false sense of security.
this isnt just nitpicking either. the article overstates the case, simplifying the issues and ignoring the complexities. the article makes a big deal of a slow response and poor outcome regarding covid-19 but pays no heed to responses as the situation progressed, nor to the fact that a 'slow response' when compared to other say germany or new zealand, varies from a few days to to a few weeks. i also note that the data for slow response that the article links to, does not measure to effectiveness nor appropriateness of responses. it also has the use as one solid block, when we know there is much variance between states. it doesnt tell what the responses were for each country. does say one country was quicker with one thing, slower than another - new zealand for example, stopped travel after the us did. it doesnt tell us how these things might have been effected by differences in each country's situation going into the pandemic.
this is important when the article looks at the countries that have managed relatively well. it either highlights that some countries are currently led by women or that some illiberal populists actually have managed well, contradicting the claims, but hand waving them away as exceptions. it doesnt tell us anything about what the response these countries took that was worked. it doesnt tell us the advantages they might have had or any disadvantages that make comparisons like for like. no mention of advantages in the testing, or any mention of testing at all, no mention about those countries who were hit by sars and mers have done so much better.
all this article tells us is that radical right illiberal populism is why some countries fucked up their responses but the evidence provided in the article is overstated an misleading, gives a false impression of the time lines. it simplifies the reasons for failure, while ignoring the different circumstances of each country that impacted the situations. it makes the claim of radical right illiberal populism the root cause of failings, but simply does not make the case.
orban and duertes show their populism didnt hinder their responses. and i do not believe that its populism that is behind trump or bolsonaros poor responses. ego and incompetence is the root cause of their failings, not ideology. thats what johnson shares with trump and bolsonaro - ego and incompetence. not ideology. if he wasnt so central to the argument and was not so obviously a poor fit i might not have looked closer, it might not have left the rest on such shakey ground.
so i repeat, hacks. this article is not based on extensive research on the matter and nor is coronavirus or pandemics their field. its a few cherry picked examples to over simplify a complex situation and overstates the significance of a particular brand of populism, something their book has identified as the great evil of day. thats what makes them hacks. and if not them, then writers of the piece. its just another polemic
polemics might make us feel better if they go after people we already dont like, but they obscure a reality not so clear cut and just feed into a 'them and us' mentality. it obscures what it is we dont like about something, and that makes things harder to prevent or turn around. AMassiveGay (talk) 12:48, 7 June 2020 (UTC)
see this, and this, for a variety of reasons for why comparisons between countries and what the data tells us make such broad and definitive claims more than problematic. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:19, 7 June 2020 (UTC)
and the RSF reference still doesnt say what we say it does whether i call someone a hack or not. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:23, 7 June 2020 (UTC)


WHO etc say the outbreak will get 'worse and worse' - why?

  • A fraction of a percent of people die of the disease - many of whom had other serious medical conditions or were very elderly - numbers of people moving into these categories will be readily calculable (even allowing for 'backlog of people not being tested early enough for the problem to be readily handled').
  • A certain percentage of people have a sufficiently serious case to be hospitalised.
    • These are the 'known knowns'
  • A much larger percentage have some symptoms (the 'colds and sore throats which are actually a very mild form of something to which one is 99% immune') and test positive.
    • These are the 'known unknowns' (who may develop a serious version of COVID)
  • An unknown percentage (possibly 40%+) would test positive, but are never tested (no visible symptoms, are not contact traced, do not work in jobs where testing occurs etc), are young persons and adults who do not get serious versions of the disease etc.
    • These are the 'unknown unknowns'

Rates of transmission can be minimised with steps that, in large parts of the world, are accessible to most (handwashing, social distancing and other low-tech activities etc)

So, given that the disease has been active for 'about eight months' (allowing for some circulation in December before the symptoms became visible), the percentages affected, etc why are the predictions so gloomy? And why the claim that COVID could wipe out humanity? (So could ash die-back - though rather unlikely.) Anna Livia (talk) 18:28, 14 July 2020 (UTC)

The gist the WHO director general made a couple weeks ago is that some countries (eg: the United States and Brazil) have national leadership that is behaving like babies. COVID-19 hasn't even hit many developing countries hard yet, so I think that's another part of things. I don't think anyone has claimed that COVID could wipe out humanity, though, the mortality rate is too low (it's nothing like, say, bubonic plague, which had a tendency to decimate entire communities... and even that didn't kill *everyone*...) Soundwave106 (talk) 20:23, 14 July 2020 (UTC)
This is not a reliable source - but [13] is probably one source of what I was told.
'Being a minor inconvenience for most of the population and killing off the most vulnerable' is a viable survival 'strategy' for most 'disease agents' (viruses, microbes and 'other'). Anna Livia (talk) 10:05, 15 July 2020 (UTC)
Ah, okay. I'll ignore the "psychic". :) The Times of Israel is usually pretty good and Netanyahu's an ass in general, so this is possible. But in this case I don't see this quote anywhere else, and the quote was of the a reporter hearing an MP hearing Netanyahu say this, so it might be a "telephone game"Wikipedia type of scenario. There is no question the virus is impacting much of humanity, for sure. Soundwave106 (talk) 13:48, 15 July 2020 (UTC)
There are enough examples on the web - eg [14] - to show that the idea is a meme, even if unlikely (and 'they' may have been operating on a 'worst case scenario' basis (for various reasons)). Anna Livia (talk) 16:55, 15 July 2020 (UTC)

Question 2[edit]

So what #is# the significance of the number of positive tests - when surely the numbers of hospitalised people and deaths are the significant figures? 'They' might as well give the number of positives for (current versions of) the common cold (while only testing a fraction of the population and 'including all deaths where someone tested positive at some point as COVID deaths - whether direct cause of death, a contributing factor or 'nothing at all to do with the case (from 'the proverbial bus' as mentioned somewhere to '100 years later of old age')? At what point do 'the general public' decide that, while the original lockdown was justified (as the authorities did not know how things would develop) the actual threat is minimal if one is 'of a certain age or younger' and healthy?

And have the Georgia Guidestones' philosophy been brought into the conspiracy narrative? Anna Livia (talk) 19:36, 20 July 2020 (UTC)

Matt Hancock & car crashes[edit]

Thanks to BoJo & Co., the UK ended up being the worst hit country in Europe, with some 65,000 excess deaths (of which the Office of National Statistics, based on death certificates, attributes at least 56,770 to covid). Yet the official British government figure was just 46,000 - until two days ago. On 17 July health secretary Matt Hancock ordered to revise the way deaths are counted, claiming that people who had tested positive, recovered and later died in car crashes had been counted as covid victims and that the figure of 46,000 was overstated (!). As a result of this, two days ago 5,377 deaths were removed from the official death toll (the greatest covid mass resurrection seen so far anywhere in the world), which was lowered to little over 41,000, making the UK the Western country with the greatest undercount. Maybe it would be worth mentioning this somewhere. -- (talk) 09:03, 14 August 2020 (UTC)

I think it's pretty clear that there is a lot of undercounting going on, particularly in countries with populist leaders that don't want to look bad. This honestly is a world wide phenomenon -- I've seen articles regarding the under-counting problem regarding the United States, much of Africa, Russia, and India (in addition to the UK), as well as data fiddling issues in many of these countries (plus Brazil). I suspect that the problem is incredibly widespread in most countries that failed to get control of the virus. To me the information in current media articles feels "scattershot" right now so it's hard to get a good summary that applies to the entire world scope, but when a few good articles come up in this direction or a narrative starts to become obvious, it definitely would be worth adding to the information suppression section. Soundwave106 (talk) 18:06, 15 August 2020 (UTC)

Regular Updates on infection[edit]

Hey, everyone. Can we please have more up to date information on the virus, it's deaths, infections and so on as when I last edited it on August 27th, I saw it was last updated in May. If anyone sees this and date is of a previous day, week or god forbid, month, can you please update it? --Boredsocialist (talk) 13:29, 30 August 2020 (UTC)


@Jeh2ow believes this article should be promoted to silver. Thoughts? — Unsigned, by: DuceMoosolini / talk / contribs

I agree with bumping the article up to silver. It's well written and the references are in good shape. β€”cosmikdebris talk stalk 17:22, 17 September 2020 (UTC)

Coronavirus in North Korea[edit]

Should I include this link under the "authoritarianism pandemic" section? Apparently, North Korea is putting sick people in quarantine prisons and leaving them to die there, but it's based on an unverified rumor. G Man (talk) 07:04, 4 November 2020 (UTC)

Prevention strategies[edit]

Observation: it looks like we have "stay three feet/one meter away from people who may be sick", but this is a little odd considering that the CDC and others recommend six feet/two meters. I checked the citations and it looks like the three feet comes from the WHO's public advice. I'm thinking that this just comes from some conflicting guidelines among several organizations, but I would argue that this is worth checking out more. Quantumgeek333 (talk) 16:14, 8 November 2020 (UTC)


I plan to add sections for symptoms and vaccine developments, and potentially one for complications as well. Quantumgeek333 (talk) 22:38, 27 December 2020 (UTC)

@Quantumgeek333 Sounds great. --Goatspeed. Fossil evidence of my evolutionπŸŽ„CircularREmail2.gifasoningπŸŽ„See what I've been messing around with 23:45, 27 December 2020 (UTC)
Anyone mind if I don't add "trouble breathing" as a COVID symptom? I was under the impression that trouble breathing means you need medical attention instead of just treating it like an ordinary symptom. Maybe this is just anxious thinking. Quantumgeek333 (talk) 00:41, 28 December 2020 (UTC)
@Quantumgeek333 As long as you can find a good citation to use for that, go ahead. --Goatspeed. Fossil evidence of my evolutionπŸŽ„CircularREmail2.gifasoningπŸŽ„See what I've been messing around with 00:49, 28 December 2020 (UTC)

I'm going to expand on the vaccine section a ton. I plan to also add a summary table for the major vaccines being developed/deployed. Anyone opposed to the table? Quantumgeek333 (talk) 01:24, 1 January 2021 (UTC)

Amantadine - what's up with that?[edit]

There is this substance that many Polish anti-vaxxers push as a cure for CoVID. The one name of a pulmonologist WΕ‚odzimierz Bodnar from PrzemyΕ›l comes up quite often as he supposedly "cured" at least 100 people with it. Would be glad to check PubMed for answers. EvroultPartes (talk) 17:13, 11 January 2021 (UTC)

Brian Rose[edit]

The London mayoral candidate - does he deserve a mention here, as he ticks several boxes (David Icke, anti-covid etc). See the other place for a biography. Anna Livia (talk) 23:56, 28 January 2021 (UTC)


Two of us think think this should be Silver. Anyone else? Corncob (chat) 19:25, 19 March 2021 (UTC)

I support silver. Bongolian (talk) 19:57, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
Seems good enough to me. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 20:13, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
Aye. Consider future promotion to Gold once the pandemic ends. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 20:55, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
Are there rules on how long these votes need? Corncob (chat) 21:14, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
Nah. If somebody objects later, which I don't think will happen, deal with it then. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 21:22, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
We have enough votes. 5-0 (counting the 2 to start off with). I doubt we'll have any objections. SILVER IT IS. Aaronmichael5 22:47, 19 March 2021 (UTC)

Lab leak redux[edit]

Is there a specific rebuttal to this new take on the argument[15]? While it initially triggered a BS response, I didn't have enough information to refute it. — Unsigned, by: Fdsa1234567890 / talk / contribs

'you can't prove that it wasnt' is basically the whole of the argument. because a 'natural' origin cannot be conclusively proved then we cannot rule out a lab leak. no evidence is provided and the piece near the start states it has no evidence either way, but they want you think it was lab leak by suggesting that its just more likely to be lab made than by the happenstance of evolving naturally in the wild -not it would be impossible for it evolve naturally, just in their opinion, less likely than it being man made. no evidence in either case, and they keep making that point very clear, but because we cannot 100% rule out a lab leak, by being dismissing the statements and letters of key scientists as 'suspect' while at the same time taking their assertions as read about the evolution of the virus and its place of origin, even though it is stated there is not yet enough data to fully understand all this about the virus, it makes a lab leak more likely. but no evidence either way. just in their opinion. not unheard of or impossible it evolved naturally, just easier, more convenient, to say it less likely than man made. no evidence either way you understand. just in case i hadnt made it clear. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:09, 12 May 2021 (UTC)
FYI Nicholas Wade is, in my opinion, not exactly the best resource in this matter (despite seeming so from an impressive resume). He's actually best known these days for a book where he wrote some beyond consensus bullshit on geneticsWikipedia. This fits with other books by him that seem to have, at first glance, a more New York Times-y approach where sometimes advocacy over-rules academic rigor. (See the NYT's 1619 ProjectWikipedia -- generally speaking, anything I've seen on the web by actual historians commenting on this is just as non-plussed at this project's narrative as the rah-rah Republican history whitewash narrative) My initial take is that at this point he's doing a similar "overextend" of academic consensus here, and his New York Times instincts are outweighing his old Nature / Science editor days. I haven't seen too many articles on this one way or another in actual academic journals (this in Nature merely asks for an evidence based approach and also suggests the consensus is still zoonosis); my hunch is scientists are, you know, too busy fighting a pandemic to care that much about where it came from right now. We'll find out whether he's right later, I suppose. I wouldn't bet on it, personally. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 13:53, 12 May 2021 (UTC)
Just to clarify something (since we had a drive by spamming) -- I have now seen more news about this, for instance, in this Economist article, on what is being investigated. Since the article paywalled, I'll quote the relevant passage:
The first flutterings of lab-leak concern were prompted by simple geography. That market is just 12km away from the Wuhan Institute of Virology (wiv), a global centre for coronavirus research. The Wuhan Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (cdc), which also worked on bat coronaviruses, is closer still: a mere 500 metres. A worker or workers in one of these labs could have been infected with a coronavirus being used in research, thus providing that virus with passage to the outside world. A related idea is that the virus came directly from a bat, or another animal, either inside a lab or as part of research-associated field work. An avid collector of wild bat viruses works for the cdc.
The problem with so many of the people writing these type of articles is the assumption that lab leak=artificial virus. And while Fauci indeed is keeping an open mind about it it does seem that "lab leak of deliberately manufactured virus" is not a terribly high probability at the moment. However, there is a bit of a higher possibility of "lab leak of a coronavirus that one of these Chinese institution was studying", eg the virus was natural (through zoonosis or another standard methods) and was being studied in one of these labs or brought in otherwise, but escaped through sloppy protocol. Viruses have escaped from labs before, and honestly this fits better into a Hanlon's razor perspective. So the impression I get is it is more this possibility that is being examined more critically.
The evidence is only circumstantial, and China, of course, is going to be their usual authoritarian dipshits about providing any concrete information. So nobody will probably know for 100% certain for a while. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 02:03, 29 May 2021 (UTC)
Yes, that's what I think it is - accidental leak from a gain-of-function experiment on a bat coronavirus. MeowPurr 17:58, 13 June 2021 (UTC)
we can think what we like, we still cannot say one way or another. id say the fact it is china is the reason why many are more certain that it was a lab leak than they have any real reason to be. until we have anything concrete, speculation is largely an exercise in scape goating and sinophobia.
i will also say beyond 'boooo china' what practical difference does it make? it wont make the lack of preparedness of many countries that covid has revealed any less criminal. and i doubt that responses would have been any quicker or involved any less foot dragging or made anyone any less reluctant to take necessary steps. we'd still all be where we are today. if covid hadnt happened then some other disease would have turned up eventually, it was only a matter time. we been warned something like this would happen for years. tut tutting at china lets no one off the hook. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:56, 13 June 2021 (UTC)
The only practical reason it should matter if one was being logical about it is that if sloppy lab procedure happened, it would give one an opportunity to correct possibly errant procedures. If you step away from trying to assign blame via shitty nationalism and realize that humans err regardless of race or nationality, that's all there is to it. If something sloppy happened, it is entirely possible that the reason isn't just "a China thing" and can apply to lab protocol worldwide. Having the knowledge available would help other labs tighten security to prevent it from happening elsewhere. Now, that's assuming it actually was a lab leak, which seems not very likely by all accounts. But politics will prevent any sort of good rational analysis... even from the natural zoonosis angle, China's caginess won't be helpful here. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 21:15, 13 June 2021 (UTC)
Gain of function is addressed here, the magic behind bats being able to fly and migrate here, and Wade & friends being grifters here, here and here.--Mirh (talk) 01:47, 31 August 2021 (UTC)

Question 'the next'[edit]

The several 'named variants' are stated to be more transmissible than 'Original Covid' - but do they cause more hospitalisations and/or more deaths? Anna Livia (talk) 09:33, 29 May 2021 (UTC)

Lab Leak III: Eclipse[edit]

So I'm hearing a new conspiracy theory that COVID actually originated from an infectious disease research institute at Fort Detrick, MD, and pointing to a July 2019 outbreak of an unnamed respiratory illness in a Virginia retirement community as evidence. For instance, this whole-ass twitter thread.

Have y'all heard similar things spreading around, or is this a localized conspiradip? β„•oir LeSable (talk) 01:36, 30 July 2021 (UTC)

Local idiocy becomes global idiocy very quickly. Wait a few days to see if it catches on. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 01:44, 30 July 2021 (UTC)
Actually China was pushing this idea at the start of the year. And it probably goes back earlier.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 08:03, 30 July 2021 (UTC)
russia and china hide alot behind a screen of misinformation. Doesnt hurt either them to add more noise to all the disruption and misdirection provided by us media already. Who can fact from fiction amid all the shit? China russia can at least claim there shenanigans with dubious stories against the old enemy the us. Whats the excuse for fox and qanon and all the other cunts? Its not for good of the country. I'm not sure benefits exactly. Is there a particular group or industry or some thing to point at more concrete than a vague 'corporations' or far right or the gop. Who actually gains from all the disinformation and the resulting political inertia and stopping from progress?AMassiveGay (talk) 11:09, 30 July 2021 (UTC)
Grifters. It doesn't take a stretch to figure out how heavy some of the marketing of "us vs. them" is driven by profit. Like, I am not in the US but even I recognize the point to all the sily "America First" marketing that's slapped on products so much in the US. You bankroll people into extreme nationalism, then market and sell to them a bunch of junk that's themed after their own country. That's the angle for FOX's advertisers (and for FOX; they just like the money they get from those advertisers). QAnon is similarly also mostly grifter driven but more from the "crowdfunded Youtuber" end. Like, look at Alex Jones' article for how easy it is to profit off of complete crankery and you should get an idea. Techpriest (talk) 11:17, 30 July 2021 (UTC)