The Conspiracy Virus

I created reported, wrote and produced this two-part feature for Channel 10’s podcast 10 News First Person, working in collaboration with journalist Antony Loewenstein.

The Conspiracy Virus looks at the proliferation of misinformation and conspiracy theory, through two topical and vitally important issues: vaccines and climate change. The series reveals the diverse reasons people come to distrust science and mainstream media, and the complex networks of information that draw people deeper in. While social media is undoubtedly a major factor exacerbating the spread of misinformation and conspiracy, there are hidden forces that sow doubt and give legitimacy to falsehoods that extend back beyond the creation of the internet.

Voices featured in this podcast include the 26th Prime Minister of Australia Kevin Rudd, Nobel Medicine Prize Laureate Professor Peter Doherty, Harvard Professor of the History of Science Naomi Oreskes, online misinformation expert QUT Dr Tim Graham, Australia’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly and more.

The podcast is hosted by journalist Hugh Riminton and was mixed by Stuart Buckland. It was made with support from the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas.