The Time Has Come To Sunset Hoaxlines Lab
Although the pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine were different disasters, information disorder’s role in preventable deaths was not. I must do more.
Dear Hoaxlines Lab Readers,
I wanted to update you about Hoaxlines Lab, which started as a project during my studies at Johns Hopkins with fellow public health scholars. We provided essential information during the pandemic and deeply valued our interactions with readers like you. I’m especially grateful to Mari Bugayong for helping me get this off the ground and to readers who trusted us to help navigate the information chaos that was 2020.
When we shifted our focus to tracking information manipulation during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, our readership continued to grow. I was heartened to see readers begin to recognize the tactics of media manipulation they’d learned about during the pandemic.
Over the past year, watching the devastation wrought by the Russian invasion of Ukraine affected me deeply, as did the determination and spirit of the Ukrainian people. Although the pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine were different disasters, information disorder’s role in preventable deaths was not. I must do more. While Hoaxlines Lab was a place for growth, it was never meant to be a destination.
The time has come for the sun to set on Hoaxlines Lab.
We’ve taken the project farther than we ever intended, made friends with other researchers, and worked with incredible journalists.
Our work has been cited by national media, journalists, international fact-checking websites, advocacy groups, expert resources, and the recent vaccine demand report from the Information Futures Lab at Brown School of Public Health. We were honored to receive an invitation to the Nobel Prize Foundations’ Forum of Experts this past May.
All this was done without accepting grants, sponsors, or making a profit. That is part of the reason the project is unsustainable. As sad as that makes me, this is not the end for readers who want to continue following a distinct but overlapping project.
The Information Epidemiology Lab (InfoEpi Lab)
The new venture, the Information Epidemiology Lab (InfoEpi Lab), deals with public health, information epidemiology, and countering malign influence. While my approach and the people I work with will change, the content will likely still interest readers.
Those who do not wish to receive newsletters from InfoEpi Lab should unsubscribe now. Those who would like to hear more about our projects and research you’re all set.
The InfoEpi Lab has already started its work projects, and I’m excited to share when I can. We are currently open to partnerships and joint research projects. You can find our contact information on the website.
This will be the second to last email I send from Hoaxlines Lab, as I’m working out how we can keep the website up as a resource. If that doesn’t work out, the Substack will remain here. Thank you for supporting Hoaxlines Lab. I hope you’ll join us on our new journey.