Skepticism

Dr. Drew Issues DMCAs so You Won’t Know He Spread Misinformation about COVID-19

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Transcript:

Today’s video has everything: pandemics, misinformation, libel lawsuit threats, those tiny skateboards you ride with your fingers, Dr. Drew Pinsky speaking words out of his actual asshole on national television, you’re gonna love it.

As I’ve covered extensively in previous videos, there’s this weird push to politicize COVID-19, which is a virus that doesn’t actually care whether you are a Democrat, Republican, or filthy commie scum. All it cares about is making its way to your lungs where it can reproduce in the hopes that you will then hock out a loogie, which COVID-19 will ride like it’s the #51 express bus directly into someone else’s mouth. And yet, for some reason it has become a part of conservative’s identity to downplay the danger of this virus, even as it became clear to anyone with a brain that this was going to be an honest-to-god pandemic. I’m still not sure why they chose that path but I assume after years of pretending scientists are wrong about climate change they just have a kneejerk reaction to anyone with real expertise warning them that they’re going to die. 

Enter Dr. Drew Pinsky, who has had a really interesting career trajectory in the past few decades. Back in high school I used to lie in bed listening to Loveline with him and Adam Carolla, during which time I assumed his degree was in psychology or relationships or something since that was the crux of the call-in advice show, but nope! He actually was an internist and specialized in addiction, which I learned when he moved on to do the show Celebrity Rehab. 

So it wasn’t surprising that in the years that followed he would often speak about things he knew nothing about. And in recent years he’s become a frequent guest on Fox News, where he weighs in on topics like homelessness. Because he’s an addiction doctor and…sometimes people with addictions are homeless I guess? Sure, whatever. Let’s also go to him to learn about the college admissions scandal, toxic masculinity, and the “genetic heritage of mass shooters” what the actual fuck, the genetic heritage of mass shooters seems to be “white as fuck” but apparently “Dr. Drew believes the vast majority of mass shootings have mental health issues, and feels we need to look into the genetics of the shooters because 60% of our behavior is related to our genetics.” I…what? That’s not how genetics works Dr. Drew, and you should know that because you were an addiction specialist and that has a lot of the same letters as “geneticist.”

Anyway once COVID-19 started tearing through China, Drew used his platform on Fox News as well as his own podcast, “Dose of Dr. Drew,” to constantly downplay the danger of the virus. He did it so often that someone going by the hilarious username of Dr Droops made a supercut. It goes from Dr. Drew encouraging people to get a flu shot — which is totally fair, you should get a flu shot becaues the flu is fucking serious — to him saying you’re more likely to GET HIT BY AN ASTEROID, which is apparently 1 in 1.6 million. There are currently about 2 million known cases of COVID-19, which with about 8 billion people in the world that would mean your chances of getting it is about 1 in 4,000. Yep, it’s apparently “total BS” that hospitals are running out of ventilators, and don’t miss him agreeing with a caller that since it’s called COVID-19 there must have been 18 others before it, the same way we know that there were 75 even shittier basketball teams in Philadelphia before they got the 76ers.

Drew responded to the video by actually apologizing and saying he was wrong, and it’s really an indictment of our current society that I was impressed a public figure actually admitted he was wrong in the face of damning incontrovertible recorded proof of what he said and the contradictory reality. Like, wow, he admitted it instead of just throwing a smoke bomb at America’s feet and running away. What a treasure.

Except that he then immediately fucked up again by issuing copyright claims on the video, convincing Twitter to remove it and also apparently briefly getting YouTube to do the same. He even Tweeted, “Infringing copywrite laws is a crime. Hang onto your retweets. Or erase to be safe.”

See, this is why we gotta stop telling guys like Dr. Drew that they’re smart enough to speak on any subject without consulting an expert. I happen to be an expert on this particular topic, since I was a copywriter for a decade. Meaning, I wrote copy for advertising purposes. And as a copywriter, I can tell you that he actually meant “copyright,” which is the restriction placed upon the rights to reproduce a particular creative work, which Dr. Drew does not actually own in many of the clips used in the supercut. Of those he does own, actual copyright lawyers seem to agree that the video more than qualifies as “fair use,” the ability to legally use certain creative works in order to comment on them. In this case, the comment is “Look at this dumb asshole who has no idea what he’s talking about and is helping conservatives make sure as many Americans die of COVID-19 as possible.”

Luckily, the video is still up on YouTube and like many attempts by celebrities and other rich people to silence critics with legal threats, this is only resulting in more people seeing Dr. Drew show his entire ass. So please go view the video in full on Dr. Droops’ channel and then share what you now know about Dr. Drew: he’s a moron who shouldn’t be trusted to speak on any subject, probably not even the one he actually studied in college.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor.

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2 Comments

  1. “your chances of getting it is about 1 in 4,000. ”
    Yeah but, people can’t do conditional probability. That’s worldwide. So in March for my city of ~1 million there were 300 cases so that’s 1 in ~3300. Then there were 35 in my council area of 100.000 so that was about the same.

    Okay but there was more, that was KNOWN cases so all those had been isolated – how many left in the general community? Well Germany recently did a study showing that in areas near an outbreak there were 10 times that number of asymptomatic cases in the community. I trust German and Australian figures because we were during March among the top 4 testing countries in the world along with South Korea and Russia.

    So that was 1 in 330, but hang on, there was more….those were the odds for a SINGLE person to person interaction.
    How many people was I gonna pass by in the supermarket each week? How many weeks was this gonna last? Odds were high, almost certain to get infected eventually!

    Being over 60 if things got as bad as Italy, I would not even make the cut for a ventilator,so that is when I decided to stay inside. Odds were still with me but consequences could be fatal so not fear but just common sense.

    Australia is STILL not going to begin easing restrictions for at least another month btw, despite being a month past peak and right down to 50 cases a day. This with a conservative PM but in this case he ALWAYS follows the advice of the Chief Medical Officer and realises that revival of Da ‘Conomy depends entirely on ending the outbreak.

  2. Speaking of Da “Conomy…I wish somebody would call out all the BS about it being wrecked.
    The S&P500 index is down about 18% rn which is not even a technical recession!

    This is a level we have not seen since…..June last year! Shock, horror!

    So “Conomy is burbling along quite nicely at ~80% of full capacity, as in Australia and China. Neither US nor Australia have a full lockdown, despite what anybody says.

    I can tell you right now we are exporting hundreds of megatons of iron ore to the Godless Reds at $85/ton, a price not seen since….Early February this year! Oh Woe!

    Sure, travel is down, consumer discretionary retail is down, but consumer staples are way up and tech is up – Amazon posted a record share price this week.

    I thought the beauty of capitalism was that it could quickly adapt to new situations of supply and demand?

    Anyway, liberals are missing a golden opportunity to payback all the COVID minimisation here.

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