Elon Musk tests positive, and negative, for Covid.

Interesting how that info gets spun.

NY Post. Conservative

NPR. Liberal

Missing from both articles is any detailed information about these tests themselves, what a positive test really means, and how much this type of test is being used.

Granted, that kind of information doesn’t attract a lot of clicks and eyeballs, but at least now we can go look it up for ourselves. If so inclined.

Don’t worry, soon we’ll have vaccines that aren’t being tested in terms of preventing COVID-19 deaths because they are measuring reduction in cold-like symptoms in healthy adults (which might actually be from colds/flus), using these inaccurate tests in the process. The outcome of preventing hospitalisation and death would of course be too ambitious and detrimental to sales.

Considering that the flu vaccination, for example, has been shown to increase the rates of infection of other upper respiratory tract infections, it’s a very convenient metric to measure. 90% false positives + lots of infections with other viruses = lots of miracle cures.

But yeah, the supposedly enlightened Obedient Believers will accuse anybody and everybody of being subhuman science-deniers for not going along with the sales pitches when… shhh… press releases and spin are not science.

(obviously, for the record, vaccines that work for diseases that are dangerous are a good thing)

The type of test Musk used is much more likely to give a false negative than a false positive. He’s probably got covid.

Previously, following the U.S. authorization this past summer, BD said it planned to increase its manufacturing capacity to at least 2 million COVID-19 tests per week going forward. The diagnostic has demonstrated a false-negative rate of 16% while delivering zero false positives in clinical studies, according to the company.

If I recall correctly, FDA testing showed some false negatives, and no false positives out of approximately 220 people, confirmed with more accurate PCR tests.

That doesn’t prove that a false positive is impossible with this test, but if this is part of some plan to inflate the positive figures, they’re doing it all wrong.

@Snooko Wow, that’s some good bullshit. The problem, though, with bullshit like this is that there are too many people out there that don’t understand that it’s bullshit, and so it builds up in the corners of their minds with all the other bullshit, and then when there’s enough bullshit in their heads, they start making decisions based on bullshit, and then you get this:

Ooops, sorry, dead kids.

Nice disclaimer at the end, though. Do you do that in real life, though? Like if you’re chatting with an acquaintance? Follow up your admittedly very impressive sounding, to a layman, anti-C19-vaccine screed with “Hey, but really, vaccines are good, and I’m really not qualified to have a meaningful opinion about any of this, please, make sure to get your kids vaccinated?” Or not?

Ahh, a typical logical fallacy of the specific variety I wrote the disclaimer for in the first place! :slight_smile: In real life, at least in the UK, intelligent people don’t tend to misunderstand somebody talking very specifically about the flu vaccination or the unreleased coronavirus vaccination with smallpox vaccinations or purple sheep.

Unfortunately the message you’ve apparently absorbed is that anybody with an issue with any individual vaccine is an “anti-vaxxer” who kills babies, is a shape-shifting purple sheep or worse… both!

What has been really good about this year is people getting familiar with asymptomatic cases, as well as T-cell immunity, which scientists have been talking above for years since around 50% of people are immune to all strains of the flu essentially for life after being exposed to one.

It’s all bollocks.

[checks social credit score]
Sorry, looks like you have corona…

:shushing_face:

Oh, the “gold standard”! How many dozens of amplification cycles were used to confirm these tests using the technology that’s not supposed to be used for diagnosis? :joy_cat:

Pretend for a moment that you have a coherent point to make, and make it in your own words.

Be specific.

Are you worried about the undercounting of cases due to false negatives?

How many amplification cycles were used in the validation process? You are of course aware of the inaccuracy and limits of the PCR process so must have that data available for your fact checking role.

If false positives are an issue with the validation process, does that increase or decrease alleged false negatives?

At some point are you going to specify what part of my claim you dispute, or make a claim of your own that can be looked into?

Ball is in your court mate.

Play it. Or don’t.

Make a point, and support it with evidence. Or don’t.

Imagine you were talking to someone who mattered. What exactly would you tell them?

What should they know about the accuracy of the testing going on, at a clinical level, and at a laboratory level, and what that means for the likely numbers of accurate, false negative and false positive tests?

Why would I go over what we’ve been talking about here for months? I’ve pointed out a basic logical issue with validating tests with a process that can produce extremely high false positive rates. Increasing alleged “false negatives” while doing nothing (with enough cycles) for false positives.

It seems that you selectively read things. If you have an issue with that logic, please point it out.

Eh, so we just declare that because PCR tests can produce false positives, and that if you do it badly enough, that the false positive rate could be high, that logic dictates that validating other tests with this method is seriously flawed?

Tests done in a clinical setting are more susceptible to the usual cause of false positives, contamination of the sample. That’s why laboratory verification is done in as close to ideal circumstances as possible to allow us to check the reliability of the testing done in the field.

This is being done. That’s what I’m looking at when I talk about what we know about the reliability of the tests done outside the lab. Can you point to some analysis and testing that indicates that it’s likely that the PCR (well, RT-PCR in this case) testing is producing high false positive rates?

No perfect test exists, but there is strong evidence for the accuracy of RT-PCR testing, and in the case of the faster field tests, strong evidence that false readings are almost always false negatives. Your take away from all that? OMG THA FALSE POSITIVES WE’RE ALL BEING HAD.

And you want to lecture me on logic? :smiley:

You actually have to demonstrate the validity of your statements about how things are before you get to say, just use logic, and therefore the answer is…

My FUD detector goes off hearing you talk the way you do. Lots of strong, but vague and non committal doubts and fears, but put them all together and logically it must mean something important. It just must!

When asked exactly what are you claiming, and what evidence do you have that can be analyzed to test your claims, you want me to do your homework!

Where was your “FUD detector” when you posted all that fake news about Assange. Not to mention various other self-contradicting statements you’ve made depending on which way the wind is blowing.

Whatever the facts about anything are, your credibility is COMPLETELY FUCKING BLOWN

hth the casual observer of this forum

I posted this as an example of how the media spins stuff. Same story, same facts reported by two different news organizations, and yet two versions of what it means. Was never meant to be an examination of the accuracy of anything other than the information we receive.

Interesting rumors floating around about AT&T selling CNN. Some of the reasons cited have to do with the huge debt that AT&T is carrying and how CNN’s (and other cable news networks, like Fox) ratings are expected to crater now that Trump is gone.

Haven’t really dug into the details that much, but it did get me thinking about the business of news.

As a business, the most important thing is cash flow. When your cash flow is generated by advertising revenue, in order to keep that cash flow steady, you need to deliver a reliable advertising demographic. i.e. clicks and eyeballs.

So what does that do to journalism? It suggests that news isn’t about providing facts, it’s about providing stories that they know will deliver the clicks and eyeballs they need to set their advertising rates, and then deliver those clicks and eyeballs in a consistent manner. It’s no longer about informing people, it’s about entertainment.

We get a couple of cable networks from Japan here, and one of them is NHK. I like watching their news because it’s like how the news used to be, just people reading facts, no opinions, no body language meant to convey their interpretation of what they were reading, just the boring facts. Kind of like Walter Cronkite. Unfortunately, that stuff doesn’t sell too well anymore.

When you look at it that way, does it really make sense to hate on your brothers and sisters because a bunch of capitalists are trying to make a buck?

At least one of those articles bothered to state:

Experts have long cautioned that such rapid tests are not as reliable as others at diagnosing the coronavirus. There are other tests, including one called PCR, widely seen as the “gold standard.” Musk has gotten one of those, too.

On Twitter, Musk said there was “something extremely bogus” going on with his initial results. He took four tests after experiencing mild cold-like symptoms, and received two positive results and two negative results. He is now waiting for his results from the more accurate PCR tests.

NPR has published a bunch of articles about testing and accuracy.

:laughing: Fair enough.

Perhaps I should explain that I tend to look at things more from from the why, rather than the what or how.

I believe things exist as they do because someone benefits. Things don’t exist if no one benefits.

Determining who benefits is sometimes easy, but other times is very difficult, if not impossible.

Looking at things from the standpoint of who benefits starts shedding light on why.

Why can be a very powerful thing. I’m sure we’ve all experienced things where the what and how didn’t make a lot of sense, but once we learned the why, we understood.

If you don’t know what happened, then how can you possibly start to look into why it happened?

I’m looking in to why it happened.

Why what happened?

Don’t know yet, but I’m homing in on the why…

Holy crap.