We're starting to see governments wake up to the threat of internet-borne disinformation with Australia for example this week announcing an A$9 million ($9.3m) education and information programme aimed at the anti-5G crowd.
• How to resist the dangers of fake news
That's a start, but the money is to last four years. The programme also arrives late, years after the wild and utterly bogus claims about how 5G was set up to eradicate much of humanity and gives kids cancer and nosebleeds have spread and become well-established in many parts of the community.
Yes, those are some of the claims that seemingly reasonable members of society appear to have swallowed and help disseminate. It's not clear that Australia wheeling out scientists and peer-reviewed evidence will be able to stem the flow of anti-5G madness dished up via social media and dubious blogs, however.
For that to happen, a more wide-ranging approach is needed. There's ample evidence that the lies and bogus information are dangerous. Talk to Department of Conservation staffers who have received death threats because of 1080 drops, and consider the mind-boggling awfulness of Western anti-vaxxers on Facebook laying into Samoa's government over its measles vaccination campaign, saying vitamins should be used instead.
The power of fast-spreading disinformation hasn't escaped governments who appreciate having a difficult to defend against weapon that costs relatively little to deploy but which can cause huge damage financially and socially.
Pakistan was last month alleged to have set up a fake news factory to spread rumours on WhatsApp groups that India was behind the abduction and death of one of its retired officers, to cause anger and outrage.
That stratagem fell over after a death certificate posted on social media turned out to be a poor forgery, but the whole thing is a harbinger of more to come as developing nations join in on the fake news fray.
It's enough to make you wonder if we've reached the limits of free speech. Obviously, weaponised disinformation has long been a menace, but the efficient digital distribution of it, which also allows for rapid payload adaptation (editing messages and images is very easy) makes it difficult to combat.
We need to do something, but this is definitely a "be careful what you wish for" situation, as Singapore's fake news law shows. Passed in May this year, the law requires online platforms to publish corrections or even take down content deemed to be false.
Sounds fair enough, but it's the government of Singapore that decides what's false. As predicted, when the law came into effect the island nation government is now using it to suppress opposition voices by demanding corrections and content removal.
What the above again shows is that government intervention would be extremely risky.
Politicians overseas and locally, like National with their recent distorted cost hike graphs on social media, aren't above dipping their toes into disinformation waters for their own cynical gain.
It's a difficult, deep-rooted problem with no clear-cut answer. Technology isn't going to help us here unfortunately.
What's needed is a concerted effort and lots of cooperation worldwide. Much has been made of Finland being successful in its anti-fake news efforts but it's worth remembering that the Nordic nation hired American consultants whose advice was simple: "don't make it worse."
When you denounce lies, you end up spreading them further. Don't share outrage, or things you don't understand or haven't checked. That should be taught in school or we're not going to survive a world where people get their news on Facebook and other social media.