This is an extension of a recent post, in which I encouraged people to be Rogue ThinkersTM.
In the following video from TedX, Sharyl Attkisson talks about astroturfing and manipulation of media messages:
To recap the video, ways to spot astroturf and/or propaganda:
Use of inflammatory language such as quack, crank, nutty, lies, paranoid, pseudo and conspiracy.
Claims of debunking myths (the idea itself that it’s a myth may be the propaganda).
Attacking the messenger, not the message.
Claiming public skepticism for those who question authority.
Update July 26, 2022: a quote from the video that is very applicable to the pandemic:
Astroturfers seek to controversialize those who disagree with them.
Be contrarian. Be skeptical. Be Rogue.