WHO now recommends masks in all crowded indoor spaces

...in news that will change absolutely no behavior of anyone anywhere.

WHO continues to recommend the use of masks by the public in specific situations, and this update recommends their use irrespective of the local epidemiological situation, given the current spread of the COVID-19 globally. Masks are recommended following a recent exposure to COVID-19, when someone has or suspects they have COVID-19, when someone is at high-risk of severe COVID-19, and for anyone in a crowded, enclosed, or poorly ventilated space. Previously, WHO recommendations were based on the epidemiological situation.

Relatedly, by rough visual inspection, 99% of DNA Lounge customers are still complete fucking idiots.

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

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24 Responses:

  1. I hate wearing masks, and had hoped that we'd be beyond needing them by now, three years into the pandemic. But I am masking again in indoor spaces, and will continue doing so as long as health authorities recommend it. In fact, I've upgraded from surgical masks to KF94s (roughly equivalent to N95s) since writing this:


  2. CSL3 says:

    That's why when I tune into the Lounge webcasts and it cuts to a behind-the-bar camera, I silently pray to the Gods of Public Health & Safety (who must not have gotten any burnt offerings the past three years?).

    Over the weekend, I watched the COVID horror flicks Host (which I thought was brilliant) and Sick (not bad, and mercifully short on "Kevin Williamson-isms" he carried over from Scream). Like Glass Onion, both take place in the early days of the pandemic - which seems to be as close as Hollywood's willing to get to the pandemic at this point. And the odd thing was.... I started to feel, I dunno, nostalgic?

    Maybe it's because we're now in the fourth goddamn year of this mess that it seems like March-April 2020 was an eon ago. But it really made me recall connecting with friends via the Skype-usurper/privacy-averse app Zoom; reading about anti-vaxxer celebs (like Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel) suddenly scared and heading off to private islands; and, of course, watching footage of people cheering healthcare workers. None of that actually happens in the above films, but the way Host, in particular, used Zoom brought it all flooding back, even though it really wasn't that long ago.

    So glad the WHO is once again "recommend[ing] the use of masks in public". Not like they coulda did that a year ago or something... 😷

    • jwz says:

      I thought Sick was trash. It was literally a remake of Scream. It was just a cliche factory.

      The only good COVID-themed fiction I've seen was The Bite, and arguably Don't Look Up.

      • CSL3 says:

        After seeing the shitty, Michael Bay-produced anti-vaxxer/-masker propaganda Songbird, my scale for "COVID entertainment" may be a bit skewed. (Seriously, don't watch it unless you truly hate yourself to the core.) Still, I mostly dug Sick until the final act. I especially loved how visceral the fights were.

        I've actually been meaning to watch The Bite since Violet recommended it in the Comments of a Round-Up a year or so ago. I know the sitcom Sprung is supposed to be specifically pandemic-based and I heard the show P Valley often has characters in masks. Other than that, the only other shows I can think of are Se.2 of HBO's Betty and a quick nod at the end of Se.2 of The Other Two.

        Oh, and that great quarantine episode of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.

      • JCA says:

        And Contagion.. though that came out a decade earlier 🤔, so not sure how that works.

        • CSL3 says:

          Contagion was actually one of the most-watched films during initial lockdowns, with screenwriter Scott Burns lamenting how much of it wound up coming true. It definitely holds up better than the Dustin Hoffman flick Outbreak (and it's leaps and bounds above the homophobic Side Effects, the Soderbergh-Burns collab that followed Contagion).

  3. Janne Moren says:

    Here in Japan the government states masks are no longer needed outside, but most people distrust them and continue to use them anyway.

    And they're not wrong; it seems pretty clear the relaxing of rules is for improving the economy, not manage COVID.

  4. Chetman says:

    March 1,053 of the Year of Our Lord 2020.

  5. 1000% not accusatory, genuinely curious - what do they define as, and what is the gap (practically and monetarily) to make a space like DNA Lounge a non “poorly ventilated space”. Like, is that even possible given the capacity? Would a half million CFM going through UV treatment do it? (Ignoring the fact that you’d feel like you’re in a wind tunnel and hear nothing but the fans)

    • jwz says:

      By my measurements, it's pretty well ventilated, but there's an "or" in that sentence, and it is most certainly both "enclosed" and "crowded".

      But also, you're asking "how much would you have to spend on airbags to keep driving drunk with no seatbelt?"

      • Don’t get me wrong, I’m quad vaxxed and do wear a mask on planes, etc.

        But to extend your analogy, I do somewhat often travel drunkenly, but its not in a personal vehicle with me driving relying on airbags. Its on the subway or in a cab. There’s infrastructure set up to allow people to make “bad decisions” without deadly consequences. I just didn’t know if going maskless in a club could be one of those things / made safe via ventilation

  6. Marten says:

    I like how they warn about poorly ventilated spaces as if people can reliably judge the ventilation quality of a space. The only solution is just to mask everywhere.

  7. Dave says:

    My wife caught Covid Friday at the hospital where she works, even though she's not around the patients.  They made her go back to work today.  I had thought there was a quarantine until you test negative, but I guess we aren't doing that anymore.

    • CSL3 says:

      If you're in the US, the quarantine was shrunk from 10 days to five days last year - 'cause the underpaid labour won't do itself. And yet... everyone high-ranking who caught COVID (from the PotUS to our mayor and everyone in-between) took the full 10 days to drown themselves in Paxlovid whilst they cut off the life-saving public safety measures.

      • Jim says:

        People should get the word out to claim to test positive five days after testing negative as fully ethical civil disobedience.

        We're on such a mythical boiling frog trajectory right now:

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