Most people who post or share anti-vaccine propaganda on Facebook are not fanatics. This campaign is about politely but firmly encouraging them to stop doing that. Remarkably, this works and will help clean up the conversation on Facebook.

Opposition to vaccines has existed as long as vaccines and it's not going away. Social media, and particularly Facebook, have emerged as a powerful way for antivaxers to spread their message. Every time someone shares an anti-vaccine link it is seen by a large number of people, and the more often they see it the more credible the message may seem to uninformed people.

I have had a policy of never letting antivax propaganda going unchallenged. I will politely respond with questions, arguments and links. Sometimes I am alone in challenging, but often other friends of the poster will join me. I make it clear that I respect their right to their opinion, I strongly disagree and that Facebook is a public forum and I object to their posting propaganda here.

Usually the poster will stop posting anti-vax material. It becomes too much trouble, and they aren't all that committed to converting anyone else. If the poster is a fanatic and keeps posting, I hide their posts but continue to challenge anyone who reposts their nonsense.

This works. I virtually never see antivax propaganda on my wall any more. If I do, I challenge.

If you are willing to take this on as a practice, and invite your rational friends to take this on as a practice, we can go a long way towards cleaning up the Facebook environment. It's a small, but real step towards a rational future.

This Cause is affiliated with the Vaccines Save Lives cause, a cause dedicated to promoting awareness of the safety, efficacy and importance of vaccines. You can find it at http://www.causes.com/causes/787378-vaccines-save-lives

No comments will be accepted on this cause. If you wish to comment please do so at http://on.fb.me/KZcimU