87,000 Missing Deaths: Tracking the True Toll of the Coronavirus Outbreak

Sobering report from the New York Times, providing evidence that COVID-19 deaths have been over-reported. Mortality data in the middle of a pandemic is not perfect. In most places, the disparities between the official death counts and the total rise in deaths reflect limited testing for the virus rather than intentional undercounting. Officially, about 355,000 people had died worldwide of the coronavirus as of Thursday. But the total death numbers offer a more…

Now Is the Perfect Time to Memorize a Poem

Powerful writing, by Matthew Schneier. Most of the essay is on the power of poetry as an oral art form. (See also Poetry is for the Ear and Poetry Writing Hacks: Top 10 Tips.) But I blogged it because of the paragraphs about the author’s father. Right now, a machine is breathing for my father, buying time in a ward I can neither visit nor see. The doctors talk a…

Researchers: Nearly Half Of Accounts Tweeting About Coronavirus Are Likely Bots

Researchers identified more than 100 false narratives about COVID-19 that are proliferating on Twitter by accounts controlled by bots. Among the misinformation disseminated by bot accounts were tweets that conspiracy theories about hospitals being filled with mannequins, or tweets connected the spread of the coronavirus to 5G wireless towers, a notion that is patently untrue. —NPR