Nov 18, 2021 4 min read

What's going on at Substack?


Wiser! Essay: Substack was meant to be the antidote to Facebook's algorithms amplifying fake news, except that the much hyped platform has become the go-to platform for those with little regard for the truth.

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Is Substack repeating the issues it was meant to overcome?

The much-hyped newsletter platform was founded in 2017 as an alternative to the (struggling) ad-driven media industry. It positioned itself as the anti-Facebook, a place where quality and thoughtfulness triumphed over engagement algorithms. But some of its most feted writers are considered by many to push harmful content.

Take Chris Berenson, an ex-New York Times writer who was banned from Twitter in August 2021 for pushing false claims about Covid,19 vaccines. But that has not stopped him from continuing to spread his nonsense.

One of Berenson’s most recent posts on Substack claims incorrectly that mRNA vaccines have contributed to, rather than stopped the spread of Covid19. (And if you are thinking, does anyone actually believe this claptrap, let me remind you that there are more people on the planet today who believe the world is flat than at any time in the history of humankind.)

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