MediaLiteracy: Marking-Up a Misleading Meme on School Guidance from the CDC

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TLDRUpFront: Red lines are located under any statement in this meme that is false, misleading, or missing key context such as “if feasible” or “where possible.” A link to the actual CDC Guidance page this meme was created from is included below.

FullContextInTheBack: With parents concerned about schools, this meme is unfortunately gaining traction as representative of the CDC Guidelines I mentioned on Wednesday’s AMA. It’s a good mock-up. Exact wording is pulled from the page – but it’s been edited to present a slanted and misleading view.


I’ve linked the actual CDC School Guidance and strongly suggest people share that, review that, and read that rather than a meme.[1] It’s not a long document, and includes links to more information for deeper-dives. If you want to spot-check any part of the meme you can Ctrl+F any word combination and see the original section where it was pulled from. When doing this it’s quickly obvious that the edits aren’t just for clarity or brevity, but around a theme. And that theme is to reduce the nuance of the guidance, increase it to sound more authoritative than it is, and come across as ‘unreasonable.’

I can’t tell for certain but I would not be surprised at all if this was edited, either by intention or unconscious bias, to favor “home schooling” vs. “government schooling” by presenting CDC Guidance as unreasonable or unaware of what children, or schools, are like.

Let’s not use poorly-sourced and misleading memes to convey crucial safety information and save those for discussing economics and promoting raw-anger.


How to appropriately use poorly-sourced memes.