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Table 1 Extracted themes and sub-themes regarding COVID-19 related misinformation on social media

From: Designing a conceptual framework for misinformation on social media: a qualitative study on COVID-19

Themes Sub-themes
Incentives/reasons for misinformation producing Cultural causes
Demand pressure/need and demand for information in pandemic crisis
The easiness of information dissemination via online networks
Financial or marketing incentives
Lack of legal supervision
Lack of knowledge/ the weak an inadequate knowledge level of content producers
Lack of knowledge in users/ lack of ability to assure the validity and credibility of the information
Excitement and entertainment
Corruption/ damage or destruction
Wording errors
Tendency to attract and increase the audience by rumor spread
Process of misinformation dissemination Target audiences: All population groups
Main channel: Social media
Main subjective categories of misinformation:
The statistics of the disease (incidence, prevalence, mortality rate, inpatient rate, recovery rate, predicting the future trends)
The new treatments, vaccines and pharmaceuticals
Preventive methods and personal and group protection tools
Dietary recommendations and diets
The ways of disease transformation
Consumption of daily supplements
Symptoms, clinical signs, prognosis, the cycle of the disease and Commune Period and the disease side effects
New diagnosis methods
Risk factors of the disease
The nature of the Corona virus (e.g. The virus structure, its living context, the periodic and seasonal behavior of the virus)
International and national documents and guidelines, governmental decisions for comforting and controlling the disease, fake instructions, public activities and resource allocation for disease control
Fake religious or traditional narratives about the disease and its mechanism
The health care system`s capabilities for confronting the disease
Fake experiences of patients or healthcare providers
Recommendation for consuming unconfirmed herbal treatments
Designing and producing unstandardized medical equipment the same as masks, gloves, etc. at home
Misinformation about the cities quarantine and traffic regulations
Negative consequences of misinformation dissemination Psychosocial
Health status
Health system
Coping strategies Supply side strategies
Demand side strategies