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The case for and against the effectiveness of face coverings and the mandating of their use

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Bantamzen

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You really cant accept the reality can you. Most people are still wearing masks and they are doing it to protect other people not themselvs.
Maybe in your corner of Lancashire. However my early experience over the last couple of weeks is that mask wearing is starting to drop off, and it is now not unusual to see people in shops, & on train and buses without masks. Even staff are starting to dispense with them.

Perhaps you shouldn't assume that what you see locally is replicated elsewhere?
 
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farleigh

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You really cant accept the reality can you. Most people are still wearing masks and they are doing it to protect other people not themselvs.

Ffp 3 masks protect the wearer however they have a valve in which means the air leaves at a higher pressure and therefore travels further meaning if you are asymptomatic you are more likely to infect those around you. They also drip moisture from the valve. They are quite tiring to wear for long periods as they make breathing slightly more difficult. I'm a welder, I wear them at work
You are protecting nobody by wearing a normal mask - just damaging the environment i am afraid.

At least you believe that you are helping people which is quite sweet. I think a lot of people just wear them to try and show that they are compassionate, knowing that they are useless.
 

Freightmaster

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Maybe in your corner of Lancashire.
I live in the same 'corner of Lancashire' as Green Tractor and with the exception of some smaller shops,
I think it's a bit of an exaggeration to claim that "most people" are wearing masks - that certainly wasn't
the case in Morrisons and Sainsburys in Morecambe and nobody whatsoever (including staff) were wearing
masks in any of the pubs and cafes that I have been in over the last ten days.

Overall, taking into account both hospitality and retail, I'd say it was around 50/50 at present.




MARK
 

Green tractor

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Maybe in your corner of Lancashire. However my early experience over the last couple of weeks is that mask wearing is starting to drop off, and it is now not unusual to see people in shops, & on train and buses without masks. Even staff are starting to dispense with them.

Perhaps you shouldn't assume that what you see locally is replicated elsewhere?

I dont dispute that there are less people wearing them, however the majority are. Even Yorkie says 60%, which is still more than half.

You are protecting nobody by wearing a normal mask - just damaging the environment i am afraid.

At least you believe that you are helping people which is quite sweet. I think a lot of people just wear them to try and show that they are compassionate, knowing that they are useless.

Please explain how wearing a 3 layer cloth washable mask is damaging the environment?
 

Ediswan

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Ffp 3 masks protect the wearer however they have a valve in which means the air leaves at a higher pressure and therefore travels further meaning if you are asymptomatic you are more likely to infect those around you. They also drip moisture from the valve. They are quite tiring to wear for long periods as they make breathing slightly more difficult. I'm a welder, I wear them at work
Some FFP3 masks have a valve, some do not.
 

LAX54

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I dont dispute that there are less people wearing them, however the majority are. Even Yorkie says 60%, which is still more than half.



Please explain how wearing a 3 layer cloth washable mask is damaging the environment?
Most 'wear' (if that is the word) the blue disposable, but many think re-usable blue masks :)
 

farleigh

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I dont dispute that there are less people wearing them, however the majority are. Even Yorkie says 60%, which is still more than half.



Please explain how wearing a 3 layer cloth washable mask is damaging the environment?
I was referring to the blue disposable ones to be found polluting the urban landscape, waters and countryside.

Please explain how wearing a 3 layer cloth washable mask stops a virus particle of diameter around 200nm
 

LAX54

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I was referring to the blue disposable ones to be found polluting the urban landscape, waters and countryside.

Please explain how wearing a 3 layer cloth washable mask stops a virus particle of diameter around 200nm
Were the cloth ones (mainly homemade) not suggested at the very beginning, just so it was seen to be doing something, and giving some sort of 'protection' ?
Bit like those plastic face masks, that have now been debunked as hopeless ! :)
 

43066

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You really cant accept the reality can you. Most people are still wearing masks and they are doing it to protect other people not themselvs.

There is no evidence that masks of the type being discussed have any useful benefit, as @yorkie pointed out. People might be wearing then because they *believe* they are protecting others, but that is a view born out of ignorance of this fact.
 

island

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Ffp 3 masks protect the wearer however they have a valve in which means the air leaves at a higher pressure and therefore travels further meaning if you are asymptomatic you are more likely to infect those around you. They also drip moisture from the valve. They are quite tiring to wear for long periods as they make breathing slightly more difficult. I'm a welder, I wear them at work
FFP3 masks come in valved and non-valved varieties.
 

yorkie

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You really cant accept the reality can you. Most people are still wearing masks and they are doing it to protect other people not themselvs.
You really can't accept reality can you. Most people in most settings are not wearing masks and they are not doing it to protect anyone.

Ffp 3 masks protect the wearer however they have a valve in which means the air leaves at a higher pressure and therefore travels further meaning if you are asymptomatic you are more likely to infect those around you. They also drip moisture from the valve. They are quite tiring to wear for long periods as they make breathing slightly more difficult. I'm a welder, I wear them at work
There really is no need for masks for the general population but if someone feels they need additional protection they have every right to wear an FFP3 mask which will give them that protection; such masks are available without valves.

A recent study recommended them for use by hospital staff. The study would not have recommended them if your arguments against had any merit. Standard masks, which are flimsy, loose fitting and not designed to filter virus particles, were found to be ineffective against Sars-CoV-2 infection. Did you read my post referring to it? Edit: it can be found in post 5 of this thread:



I live in the same 'corner of Lancashire' as Green Tractor and with the exception of some smaller shops,
I think it's a bit of an exaggeration to claim that "most people" are wearing masks - that certainly wasn't
the case in Morrisons and Sainsburys in Morecambe and nobody whatsoever (including staff) were wearing
masks in any of the pubs and cafes that I have been in over the last ten days.

Overall, taking into account both hospitality and retail, I'd say it was around 50/50 at present.
That's good to hear that Morecambe isn't as different to the rest of England as it was made out to be!
 

Green tractor

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I was referring to the blue disposable ones to be found polluting the urban landscape, waters and countryside.

Please explain how wearing a 3 layer cloth washable mask stops a virus particle of diameter around 200nm


https://twitter.com/richdavisphd/status/1276629364067536897 This is a visual (but non scientific) demonstration of the benefit of masks. Social distancing is more effective, but where it isn't possible a mask has benefits, have you tried spitting with one on?

The virus particles don't travel on their own, they travel on droplets of water in your breath.

I live in the same 'corner of Lancashire' as Green Tractor and with the exception of some smaller shops,
I think it's a bit of an exaggeration to claim that "most people" are wearing masks - that certainly wasn't
the case in Morrisons and Sainsburys in Morecambe and nobody whatsoever (including staff) were wearing
masks in any of the pubs and cafes that I have been in over the last ten days.

Overall, taking into account both hospitality and retail, I'd say it was around 50/50 at present.




MARK
Obviously in pubs etc people aren't wearing them, you cant eat and drink with one on, so in other locations the majority still are choosing to wear them
Shops & public transport tend to be different to other places, such as pubs, restaurants, leisure centres etc.

It was down to very roughly half (maybe a little more than that, but certainly no more than 60%) when I went to Morrisons today


More than half is a majority

If wearing standard flimsy loose-fitting masks was effective, why did a recent study indicate that these were ineffective when compared to effective FFP3 masks?
The study was referring to protecting the wearer, which is not what the fabric masks are about, see above.
 

43066

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This is a visual (but non scientific) demonstration of the benefit of masks. Social distancing is more effective, but where it isn't possible a mask has benefits, have you tried spitting with one on?

As you say, it’s completely unscientific, and far too simplistic to be of any value. It’s obvious from the figures that masks have had no discernible benefit whenever they have been introduced. Probably because most people don’t go around spitting into the faces of strangers.

I can’t believe this still needs to be pointed out.

The virus particles don't travel on their own, they travel on droplets of water in your breath.

Virus particles are spread by fine droplets and aerosols which are far too small to be stopped by standard surgical coverings.
 

RPI

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The study was referring to protecting the wearer, which is not what the fabric masks are about, see above
So surely then now there is a mask that protects the wearer then problem solved, if you want to wear a mask then wear one that protects yourself then you needn't worry what other people are doing.
 

Freightmaster

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Obviously in pubs etc people aren't wearing them, you cant eat and drink with one on
What I meant was that until 10 days ago, it was mandatory to wear a mask in a pub or cafe
while walking to and from your table, going to the toilet, etc and in may experience,
99% of people complied with that particular requirement, but since July 19th, I haven't seen
anyone in a pub or cafe wearing a mask when not seated when I expected it to be 60/40,
as it is in shops - why have people ditched masked en masse in pubs but not in shops??

, so in other locations the majority still are choosing to wear them
I think this is purely down to 'emotional blackmail' - most shops have posters on the door
explaining that while you no longer have to wear mask, they would like you to continue to
do so "out of consideration for others". This messaging makes people (myself included) feel
that if they chose not to wear a mask they will be automatically be labelled as inconsiderate/
selfish by other shoppers, and is the main reason why so many are still wearing masks in
retail environments.



MARK
 

seagull

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Funny to see the level of supposed "concern about protecting others": nothing but virtue signalling unfortunately (especially when it's regarding face cloths). Unless the persons claiming to be so concerned don't eat/drive/buy anything disposable/live off grid. And even then...
 

yorkie

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So surely then now there is a mask that protects the wearer then problem solved, if you want to wear a mask then wear one that protects yourself then you needn't worry what other people are doing.
Exactly.

But we all know it's really about imposing authoritarianism rather than any scientific reason.

https://twitter.com/richdavisphd/status/1276629364067536897 This is a visual (but non scientific) demonstration of the benefit of masks. Social distancing is more effective, but where it isn't possible a mask has benefits, have you tried spitting with one on?

The virus particles don't travel on their own, they travel on droplets of water in your breath.
This isn't scientific, as you say. It's theoretical.

The question is actually whether standard flimsy masks are effective at preventing transmission.

FFP2/3 masks do prevent virus particles from spreading, I agree.

However the standard flimsy loose-fitting masks that complied with mask mandates do not, according to a member of SAGE:


Dr Colin Axon warned some cloth masks have gaps that are invisible to the naked eye, but are 500,000 times the size of viral Covid particles

Standard face coverings are just "comfort blankets" that do little to reduce the spread of Covid particles, a scientist advising Sage on ventilation has said.

Robert Dingwall, who is a member of Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling (SPI-M), which reports to Sage, stated:
Robert Dingwall, professor of sociology at Nottingham Trent University, said: “The benefits of masks have always been uncertain because the quality of the evidence in both directions is so weak.

“Any benefit has probably been quite small, or it would have been obvious even from weak studies, and needs to be offset by the psychological impact on population fear and anxiety, on children’s learning and interactions with adults, on people with communication issues, and on the substantial number of adults who cannot wear masks because of underlying health conditions or other disorders, including previous trauma from assaults or abuse or worse

“In my opinion it is a positive step to make mask-wearing voluntary.”

A study, reported in this BBC article, found flimsy loose fitting masks did not protect against Sars-CoV-2 infection, whereas FFP3 masks did:

Wearing a high grade mask known as an FFP3 can provide up to 100% protection.
By contrast, there is a far greater chance of staff wearing standard issue surgical masks catching the virus.
[Standard] masks are relatively flimsy and loose-fitting and are not meant to screen out infectious aerosols - tiny virus particles that can linger in the air and are now widely accepted as a source of coronavirus infection.

The study found high levels of infection with standard masks, which was 47 times higher than when effective masks were worn. Obviously we don't have a 'control group' with no masks, but the results are very damning for the standard, flimsy surgical masks.


Obviously in pubs etc people aren't wearing them, you cant eat and drink with one on, so in other locations the majority still are choosing to wear them
In some locations the majority are, but in most locations people generally are not, but that's for another thread


More than half is a majority
But it's extremely slim, and dropping all the time.
The study was referring to protecting the wearer, which is not what the fabric masks are about, see above.
Given the vast majority of the population has had the chance to be fully vaccinated and those who aren't, are generally younger people with good innate immune systems, the small minority of people who want additional protection can make that choice.

Trying to dictate that others wear a standard, flimsy loose fitting mask which does not filter virus particles, does not stop the spread of SARS-CoV-2, and therefore is utterly pointless.

All it does is divide society and make things difficult for people with hidden disabilities, particularly those who are hard of hearing.

What I meant was that until 10 days ago, it was mandatory to wear a mask in a pub or cafe
while walking to and from your table, going to the toilet, etc and in may experience,
99% of people complied with that particular requirement, but since July 19th, I haven't seen
anyone in a pub or cafe wearing a mask when not seated when I expected it to be 60/40,
as it is in shops - why have people ditched masked en masse in pubs but not in shops??
Indeed people used to wear masks when walking around pubs/restaurants, but now generally do not.

I think this is purely down to 'emotional blackmail' - most shops have posters on the door
explaining that while you no longer have to wear mask, they would like you to continue to
do so "out of consideration for others". This messaging makes people (myself included) feel
that if they chose not to wear a mask they will be automatically be labelled as inconsiderate/
selfish by other shoppers, and is the main reason why so many are still wearing masks in
retail environments.
Exactly what it is, emotional blackmail.
 

Class320

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I fail to see how asking people to be considerate can be seen as imposing authoritarianism. I think some people are getting a bit carried away now and reading too much into things. Wearing a mask hurts absolutley nobody, it's a piece of fabric on your face, no different from a hat on your head or a scarf round your neck. It's an inanimate object and does nothing to hurt anyone.
 

Richard Scott

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I fail to see how asking people to be considerate can be seen as imposing authoritarianism. I think some people are getting a bit carried away now and reading too much into things. Wearing a mask hurts absolutley nobody, it's a piece of fabric on your face, no different from a hat on your head or a scarf round your neck. It's an inanimate object and does nothing to hurt anyone.
Why impose something that is next to useless? Yes wearing a mask does cause problems, I found them very difficult (any type) and causes me breathing issues.
 

Green tractor

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I fail to see how asking people to be considerate can be seen as imposing authoritarianism. I think some people are getting a bit carried away now and reading too much into things. Wearing a mask hurts absolutley nobody, it's a piece of fabric on your face, no different from a hat on your head or a scarf round your neck. It's an inanimate object and does nothing to hurt anyone.

Exactly, its just like the 20mph speed limit around schools, wearing a seatbelt, wearing high viz clothes when on a push bike (or motorbike)
 

yorkie

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I fail to see how asking people to be considerate can be seen as imposing authoritarianism.
As I said above, mandating masks was authoritarian.

I don't have any problems with a sign saying "Masks are optional" (as at my local leisure centre) but I do have a big problem with the likes of LNER shouting "WEAR A MASK" in bold upper case with some small text underneath trying to make people feel guilty if they don't.

I refer you to previous posts regarding how people feel about that sort of messaging. I agree with the view that it is emotional blackmail.

I think some people are getting a bit carried away now and reading too much into things.
No, I don't think so. We know exactly what the likes of LNER are up to. They could have had the much softer messaging other organisations have done, but they went for the emotional blackmail / authoritarian stance

Wearing a mask hurts absolutley nobody, it's a piece of fabric on your face, no different from a hat on your head or a scarf round your neck. It's an inanimate object and does nothing to hurt anyone.
I refer you to my previous posts; did you read them?

Do you know what mass mask wearing does for people who have hearing difficulties?

Do you know how mandatory masks, or emotional blackmail to wear masks, makes people with exemptions feel?

You have either dismissed these valid concerns without any reasoning, or you have not read previous posts. Which is it?

Exactly, its just like the 20mph speed limit around schools, wearing a seatbelt, wearing high viz clothes when on a push bike (or motorbike)
These are all false equivalences.

Haven't these false equivalences already been discussed in this thread?
 

Green tractor

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As I said above, mandating masks was authoritarian.

I don't have any problems with a sign saying "Masks are optional" (as at my local leisure centre) but I do have a big problem with the likes of LNER shouting "WEAR A MASK" in bold upper case with some small text underneath trying to make people feel guilty if they don't.

I refer you to previous posts regarding how people feel about that sort of messaging. I agree with the view that it is emotional blackmail.


No, I don't think so. We know exactly what the likes of LNER are up to. They could have had the much softer messaging other organisations have done, but they went for the emotional blackmail / authoritarian stance


I refer you to my previous posts; did you read them?

Do you know what mass mask wearing does for people who have hearing difficulties?

Do you know how mandatory masks, or emotional blackmail to wear masks, makes people with exemptions feel?

You have either dismissed these valid concerns without any reasoning, or you have not read previous posts. Which is it?


These are all false equivalences.

Haven't these false equivalences already been discussed in this thread?
Why is the 20mph speed limit not equivalent, it is there to protect the pedestrians, not the driver.
 

Class320

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Why impose something that is next to useless? Yes wearing a mask does cause problems, I found them very difficult (any type) and causes me breathing issues.

Nobody is imposing anything! You do not need to wear masks in England anymore! If people choose to wear them in England then that is their choice. Asking people to be considerate IS NOT imposing authoritarianism!
 

yorkie

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Why is the 20mph speed limit not equivalent, it is there to protect the pedestrians, not the driver.
For a start there is clear evidence that such speed restrictions do actually save lives!

Speed limits are there to protect everyone and there is actual real world evidence of their effectiveness.

It's true that pedestrians are going to benefit more from further speed reductions but to suggest that this means that speed limits are somehow an equivalent restriction to wearing masks is absolutely absurd.


It is true that face masks can protect against virus transmission, however a real world study (linked to above) found that standard face coverings were ineffective and resulted in a very high rate of infections. FFP3 masks were demonstrated to be effective.

Given we know that there are masks which are effective, it makes sense for the very small number of people who require additional protection wear effective masks rather than fussing over what other people do or don't do.

Are you aware that over 88% of adults have had at least one dose of the vaccine, and the vast majority of these have had two doses?

Are you aware that over 90% had detectable antibody levels when measured several weeks ago? It will be higher now. And a significant proportion of those without detectable antibody levels will still have good immunity.

Are you saying you don't believe in the effectiveness of vaccines and you don't believe those who feel they need extra protection can wear effective masks?
 

Class320

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No, I don't think so. We know exactly what the likes of LNER are up to. They could have had the much softer messaging other organisations have done, but they went for the emotional blackmail / authoritarian stance

I absolutley do think so, you seem to be the only person getting upset because LNER have used capitol letters in a sign asking people to be considerate. That IS all that it is, nothing more.
 

yorkie

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Nobody is imposing anything! You do not need to wear masks in England anymore! If people choose to wear them in England then that is their choice. Asking people to be considerate IS NOT imposing authoritarianism!
The wording by companies such as LNER is not appropriate.

If LNER (and their ilk) said "You do not need to wear masks in England anymore" I would have no problem, but that is not what they are saying.

I absolutley do think so, you seem to be the only person getting upset because LNER have used capitol letters in a sign asking people to be considerate. That IS all that it is, nothing more.
It's not just because they use capital letters, but that is part of it

I am not the only person who thinks it is inappropriate.

Also, it's not correct to suggest that people who don't wear face coverings are being inconsiderate; is that what you are suggesting? If so, please can you explain why you think this? Is the entire population of Sweden inconsiderate?
 

Class320

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The wording by companies such as LNER is not appropriate.

If LNER (and their ilk) said "You do not need to wear masks in England anymore" I would have no problem, but that is not what they are saying.

Well they're hardly saying "wear a mask or you'll be sent to the gulag" either are they!?! They're just asking people to be considerate on the train and continue to wear a mask. It's no different than asking people not to smoke or not to drink alchohol on trains!
 

Richard Scott

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Nobody is imposing anything! You do not need to wear masks in England anymore! If people choose to wear them in England then that is their choice. Asking people to be considerate IS NOT imposing authoritarianism!
I didn't mention authoritarianism so why put 'is not' in bold and capitals? Why is wearing a mask considerate when it's next to useless? It's inconsiderate to wear one when you consider the waste generated by disposable masks, which is what most wear and the wasted natural resources. This is not considered is it?
 

yorkie

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Well they're hardly saying "wear a mask or you'll be sent to the gulag" either are they!?! They're just asking people to be considerate on the train and continue to wear a mask. It's no different than asking people not to smoke or not to drink alchohol on trains!
It's completely different to asking people not to smoke!

Smoking has clear implications for health and is quite rightly illegal on board trains.

As for alcohol, I don't think it's worth debating the merits of how equivalent this is, but alcohol is now permitted on LNER and on my last two trips to London I was actually given alcohol by LNER.

You still haven't addressed many of the points I've made in this thread. That's your choice, but it suggests to me that you have a very weak argument if you cannot address them
 

Darandio

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I didn't mention authoritarianism so why put 'is not' in bold and capitals? Why is wearing a mask considerate when it's next to useless? It's inconsiderate to wear one when you consider the waste generated by disposable masks, which is what most wear and the wasted natural resources. This is not considered is it?

Over a hundred billion of them being discarded monthly with zero plan on how to deal with it. No talk about the plastic contained even in disposable mask and zero plan for recycling.

The fact that nobody seems to give a toss is frightening considering the huge push in the last few years about things such as plastic in the oceans killing our planet. Doesn't matter now because Covid.
 
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