Steak-umm just schooled the internet on misinformation. Facebook, Twitter, and Google should take notes.

·2 min read
Steak-umm
A Steak-umm promotional image. Courtesy of Steak-umm
  • Frozen meat company Steak-umm fired off a tweetstorm Thursday about, in part, misinformation.

  • It also posted about cultural polarization, media literacy, and other topics.

  • The likes of Facebook and Twitter, tasked with policing false info, could take a cue from Steak-umm's insight.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

The most recent lesson on misinformation came from an unlikely teacher: the frozen meat company, Steak-umm. And Facebook, Twitter, and Google should take notes.

The Pennsylvania-based brand on Thursday posted a "beefy thread" on Twitter about "societal distrust in experts and institutions, the rise of misinformation, cultural polarization, and how to work toward some semblance of mutually agreed upon information before we splinter into irreconcilable realities."

Steak-umm said "one universal goal everyone should prioritize is getting people from across the ideological spectrum closer to the same reality of baseline facts and evidence," a difficult feat given in part the expansive nature of online platforms and "people's access to infinite information."

The company also said there can be shortcomings with experts and institutions, but that doesn't make "fringe sources equally credible or trustworthy."

Steak-umm didn't name any names in its thread, but the challenges it discussed have been faced by Facebook, Google, and Twitter for years. Things have only intensified in difficulty since March 2020 as the group controls how much misinformation people see - and can therefore be influenced by - online. False information surrounding the coronavirus disease, political conspiracies, and the election specifically has taken center stage.

The companies have attempted to flag information they deemed to be misleading, including from those spreading fringe ideology, prompting backlash from some on the right who claim the platforms are censoring viewpoints they don't agree with.

But some groups and posts, like those centered around the "Stop the Steal" campaign alleging the election was stolen from former President Donald Trump, were allowed to proliferate before Facebook cracked down on them.

It's perhaps not completely surprising that a meat corporation is schooling the internet on the spread of false information. Steak-umm has been using its Twitter platform to crusade against coronavirus conspiracy theories since last year. It's also gone on "tweetstorm rants" about scientific literacy, woke brands, and other topics.

It has set the brand apart, with its steady stream of social awareness commentary (the company swapped "mistakes" for "misteaks" and "meet" with "meat" throughout its Thursday thread.)

Brands at large have felt pressure to take stances on political and social issues using their social media accounts in the last year, including on the 2020 presidential election and on racism.

But Steak-umm has taken that to the next level, slicing through the noise and serving up logic-laden tweets.

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