Surveys aside, it's through the medium of personal essay and hot takes that opinions become mistaken for fact. This comes from, in some cases, relatable writing -- when writers "distill it down into plain language, making it accessible for average folks," says Dr. Tibbals.
How do you filter out the garbage?
Just do your homework, essentially. If you really think that you're going to get cancer from all those blow jobs, talk to a doctor. Dr. Tibbals says the very same thing, even suggesting that writers take everything they read with a grain of salt:
"My best suggestion would be to always go back to the source and double-check your 'hot take' -- better that than miss an opportunity to reach readers due to a poor explanation or translation. And readers can contribute too by doing their due diligence. I know we supposedly all already know this, but just because it says it on the internet doesn't make it true. Ask questions, demand better content, and make sure to pay for the information.