There is still a lack of understanding who are those who object vaccination, be it in the case of the coronavirus or other infectious disease.

So this recent study is interesting, examining how anti- and not-anti-vaccination individuals speak on twitter:

Boosted b/c papers are interesting, though their attitude is not empathetic.

> A Python Package to Detect Anti-Vaccine Users on Twitter

Is dangerously close in tone to "We're now able to make a list of people who, if mass-arrested, would probably end the pandemic", which...

1. That kind of talk is not going to build social cohesion
2. Making lists of people has a bad historical reputation


I agree on that point. I also was a bit shocked of providing such analytical tool, which would not have been necessary for a science publication (granted that the dataset access requires the academic API). The title in particular does not seem neutral at all.

I found the aplroach interesting, but... yet inconclusive from what is presented...

I confess, I hit the boost button because your interpretation was quite interesting, then I clicked and had a "woah" moment.

I think at this point this one is going to have to get filed under "science is broken".

And this introduces an even bigger problem, because it starts becoming reasonable to ask: "who among these scientists would blow the whistle if the pharma companies DID try to push through an unsafe vaccine"...


And again you have my agreement 🙂 Me as a biochemist, I welcomed the development of a vaccine - and hated how some promoted it as a "miracle cure" as much as others making false claims about it to arhue for rejection.

In the end, it is a pharmaceutical intervention, which we should use to respond to diseases - but always with care and diligence.

@christian_zerfass @cjd there is an intentional conflation of those who are skeptical of the effectiveness of pfizer/maderna covid theraputics as christian fundies with antivax tendancies. the root problem is that there exists a media apparatus with monetary incentives to promote the products that pump up the profit margins of those who are making a large amount of profit from covid fears. those who object are labled as 'antivax' as the war on honest open dialogue rages onward on twitter dot com.

@yes @cjd

I don't object that big groups are necessarily diverse. Obviously, trying to find trends is not a wrong thing to do, but caution in interpretations needed - that is correct.

@christian_zerfass @cjd in a big enough sample set you can find almost any kind of correlation if you have a big enough selection bias. this study being on twitter likely caused this by virtue of getting data from twitter.

@yes @cjd Yes, but it's a start. Indeed the determined differences are small.

@christian_zerfass @cjd twitter is biasing the data to force the conclusion to a certain political direction, like they always have.
@christian_zerfass @cjd like, that is literally how twitter works in practice. only show the data that twitter deems you want to see, so they can sell ads. any kind of science done on twitter via public apis is fundamentally flawed by design.

@yes @cjd

Sure. For researchers, Twitter offers lots of access. Not brilliant from the user perspective, but that's how it is. So I assume that's why the study authors chose twitter posts, but yes, big data analysis requires to know and consider your dataset.

@christian_zerfass @cjd twitter does not have a very credible history nor are they know as being honest.
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