Ebola Epidemic Linked to Lack of Preventive Hashtags

A study to be published in Epidemiology blames the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa on the shocking lack of preventive hashtag use by First-Worldlings. The researchers estimated that the use and proliferation of Twitter hashtags urging to stop Ebola and threatening it to stop could have saved 95 percent of victims had it been done before the situation got out of hand.

“If the last few years showed us anything, it’s the power of hashtags to solve urgent problems, resolve crises, and #SaveTheWorld at large,” said lead researcher Linda Prtinesque, noting that disease prevention is no exception. “A single photo of a pouting Michelle Obama holding up a sign with an appropriate hashtag, if transmitted via satellite to Africa, would have stopped the epidemic in its infancy. I guess we’ve blown our chance. Now only an avalanche of tweeted hashtags can possibly slow the epidemic.”

Pertinesque’s preliminary research shows that tweets by people already involved in the relief efforts—such as doctors, nurses, aid workers, financial donors, and “misguided scientists looking for a chemical cure”—make the biggest impact in the fight against Ebola. She is to appear on national television to urge said group of people to stop their ineffective work and instead take up the hashtags to #BeatBackEbola.

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