What Next: TBD

Did the Internet Doom a Pregnancy?

The real-life cost of online misinformation.

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Episode Notes

For pregnant women in the United States, there are plenty of reasons to mistrust the medical establishment. Mortality rates are high compared with other Western countries, and one-third of women in the United States give birth by C-section. It’s no wonder that many women turn to the internet for alternatives.

This week, the story of one woman who was drawn into a network of private Facebook groups dedicated to the idea of “freebirth,” or unassisted birth. And what happens when the misinformation shared in these private groups has real-life consequences.

Guest: Brandy Zadrozny, reporter for NBC News. Read her reporting on “freebirth.”

About the Show

Every Friday, Slate’s popular daily news podcast What Next brings you TBD, a clear-eyed look into the future. From fake news to fake meat, algorithms to augmented reality, Lizzie O’Leary is your guide to the tech industry and the world it’s creating for us to live in.

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  • Lizzie O’Leary is the host of What Next: TBD, Slate’s show about technology, power, and the future. Previously, she created and hosted Marketplace Weekend. She has reported for CNN, Bloomberg News, and the New York Times Magazine, among others. She is also a contributing writer at the Atlantic.