What Role is the Media Playing in the Coronavirus?

By Jared McCabe
Staff Reporter

News about the Coronavirus that spread from Wuhan, China, has made headlines across all media outlets, from CNN to The New York Times, along with Twitter and other social media platforms.

Where do you get information about this pandemic from? Do you feel comfortable and well informed or do you have a sense of uneasiness, like the media is blowing the virus out of proportion?

Sophomore Madeline Londo says that she educates herself about the virus through Sacred Heart and the CDC. 

“I get most of my information about the Coronavirus through the updates the university is giving us and the CDC website. I personally stay away from reading information on the news because I think they’re overreacting to the Coronavirus outbreak,” Londo said

Many students say they turn to social media as a source.

Sophomore Gabriella Filippetti said, “I usually see the information about the virus on Twitter or Facebook. There is usually something new being said about it every day.”

Meanwhile, Ellen Micallef, a Sophomore from Hopkinton, Mass., says she was not worried too much about the virus until just recently.

“I didn’t think that the Coronavirus was a big deal until my small town had two positive cases. One of those cases is a parent of a high school student where both my brothers attend. It now seems more real because it is affecting my family. The virus is scary, but I also believe the media is hyping it up. There is unnecessary attention, including rumors. There needs to be only facts,” said Micallef.

On the contrary, senior Nick Rizzi says the media is doing a good job. 

“Outside of social media, I have been following CNN every now and then to get live updates. The virus is pretty concerning after seeing all of the major money-making sporting events being shut down due to the virus which is in the best interest of everybody. I think the media is taking the right approach informing the public on the outbreak of the virus daily. The media is doing a good job keeping us informed of what is going on throughout the world,” said Rizzi.

Sophomore Ben Bello relies on all forms of media outlets. 

“Outside of social media, the news outlets I use for information on the virus are News 12 Connecticut, The Spectrum and NBC Nightly News. I also received a newsletter from Trumbull Times addressing the outbreak as it continues to spread throughout the area. With these news outlets, I don’t believe they are creating fake news,” said Bello.

The virus has affected students in different ways. 

Senior Sidney Choothesa said, “I’ve been reading articles online to keep up with the facts of the virus, so I don’t assume things from social media or word of mouth. I have seen many posts on social media adding to the stigma of the Coronavirus, which is really sad. The media is instilling fear in us. In addition, it’s sad to see what people say about Asian cultures because of this virus. Being an Asian American in this society at this time is difficult because people just throw around what they think are jokes, and it’s actually offensive.”

About the author

Leave a Reply