Over 16,000 Facebook posts around Gates and Coronavirus were liked and commented on close to 9 lakh times this year while videos around it were shared millions of times.
Microsoft co-founder and billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates has become the leading target of all the conspiracies surrounding the origin of the deadly Coronavirus, according to a report based on the data compiled by the New York Times and media analytics firm Zignal Labs. According to the report, misinformation and conspiracies around Covid-19 linking Gates found 1.2 million times mention on television or social media between February and April this year. This is 33 per cent more than the second most popular conspiracy that linked 5G technology with the outbreak.
Over 16,000 Facebook posts around Gates and Coronavirus were liked and commented on close to 9 lakh times this year while videos around it were shared millions of times, the American newspaper noted. Moreover, According to Zignal Labs, such theories claiming Gates was aware of a Coronavirus pandemic beforehand and he was planning to put microchips in humans to tackle the disease, were mentioned as much as 18,000 times on the television and social media every day.
The fact — Gates has been quite vocal about the bigger threat a global pandemic could pose for many years ahead – has been seized on by the conspiracy theorists while some of them claiming it as evidence that Gates had prior knowledge about the Coronavirus, CNBC reported. In 2015 for instance, a TED Talk speech by Gates about a virus brings a greater risk to humanity than nuclear war has received 25 million new views on YouTube in the past few weeks.
While Gates declined to comment on the report by the New York Times, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s chief executive Mark Suzman said that it is distressing. It is “distressing that there are people spreading misinformation when we should all be looking for ways to collaborate and save lives.” The foundation has so far committed $250 million for the Covid-19 relief globally