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How anti-vaxxers and ivermectin advocates have co-opted US local news

Local outlets may lack audience size, but they can can provide a veneer of legitimacy to fringe groups, experts say

Last November, the WEAR-TV news station in northern Florida aired a segment on Dr Benjamin Marble, a local doctor who created a free telehealth website offering consultations for Covid-19. Marble, the reporter said, had made it so “patients don’t have to pay a cent” for coronavirus treatment and believed his site could replace Obamacare.

To the average viewer, the segment on the ABC affiliate, which is owned by Sinclair Broadcasting, was a local news report touting a local service. What the report didn’t mention, however, is that Marble is a member of America’s Frontline Doctors, a rightwing political group that gained notoriety in summer 2020 after some of its members appeared in a viral video touting unproven Covid-19 treatments as miracle cures.

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Read the original article at The Guardian

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