“It’s possible to work with the brand and still be information-based and science-based,” he said, but acknowledged that “part of it is needed – because debunking took me so many hours.”
Mrs. Wong left her job in 2019 to devote herself full-time to Lab Muffin Beauty Science, but she still sometimes works up to 70 hours per week. “Science takes a lot more time than misinformation, because you have to do research properly,” he said.
Once a debunker becomes a listener, account maintenance and construction work can also be burned out. Like most influencers, they push themselves to excel. As Dr. Austin Chiang, a gastroenterologist with more than half a million TikTok followers, explains, they often blame themselves if their content is bad. “We think, is it because my messaging isn’t good?” He said. “Is it because the video quality is not good?”
Dr. The most tiring element, Wallace said, was harassment. Commentators repeatedly insulted him, and when he posted in favor of vaccination, they accused him of being a “shill for Big Pharma.” “I block accounts every day,” he said. Wallace said. He also received threatening and sexually violent messages through his university email account – a situation he said the university police should be involved in earlier this year.
For healthcare professionals, harassment can have professional consequences or cause them to fear. “A lot of people’s organizations don’t want them to attract a lot of negative attention,” says Renee Diresta, a misinformation expert and technical research manager at Stanford Internet Observatory, which studies Internet publicity. Physicians are encouraged to treat patients. Scientists are encouraged to conduct research and submit their results for peer review. To create content on TikTok? Less so.
Users considered leaving Mr. Dhahir TikTok after finding out his pharmacy address and spreading rumors about his professional and personal life. He had to meet with the Dean of Medicine at the University of Sydney and explain why the university received the complaint. Mr Dhahir said he felt supported by his university but was worried it could change quickly. “One wrong move, and then my job could fire me or the university might kick me out,” he said. “I have to make sure I’m not bad.”