AFP Fact Check
Malaysian social media users falsely claim ‘Bill Gates has prepared billions of monkeypox vaccines’
AFP Malaysia Published on Wednesday 15 June 2022 at 15:21
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A video has been viewed thousands of times on Facebook and TikTok alongside a claim that billionaire Bill Gates has “billions of doses of monkeypox vaccine on standby” as more than a thousand infections have emerged worldwide. However the video has been shared in a false context. The footage was taken during Gates’ visit to a Covid-19 vaccine storage facility in Abu Dhabi in May 2022. His charity, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has told AFP that the claim is untrue.
The 40-second video was shared here on Facebook on May 28, 2022.
Gates is a frequent target of misinformation — AFP Fact Check has debunked false and misleading claims about him and the Covid-19 vaccines here, here, here and here.
Read the article here:
Monkeypox Outbreak Triggers New Conspiracy Theories About Bill Gates As #BillGatesBioTerrorist Trends
I am a writer, journalist, professor, systems modeler, computational and digital health expert, avocado-eater, and entrepreneur, not always in that order.
Well, that certainly didn’t take long. Once the current monkeypox outbreak spread to the U.S., it was only a matter of time before conspiracy theories about this outbreak began spreading as well. And it was only a matter of time before such conspiracy theories began mentioning Bill Gates, the Microsoft co-founder and billionaire philanthropist.
All of this should be about as surprising as a cat fight or a “here’s why you suck” speech on a reality TV show. After all, consider how many different Bill Gates-related conspiracy theories have emerged ever since the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic began in early 2020, some of which I covered for Forbes back in April 2020. For example, there was that Gates-placing-microchips-in-Covid-19-vaccines-to-track-everyone-for-who-knows-why conspiracy theory that people shared on Facebook and smartphones, two things that ironically do actually track people. Some politicians have further fueled such theories by either not denouncing them or even propagating them.
So why are these conspiracy theories targeting Gates? Well, Gates has been supporting vaccination and the development of new vaccines to better prevent and respond combat infectious disease outbreaks, epidemics, and pandemics. So perhaps anti-vaccination campaigns, which may in turn be trying to sell their own unproven therapies, view him as a big target. Also, could this be related to Gates’s efforts to encourage other billionaires and corporations to use their accumulated wealth more to help improve global health? Not all of them may be on board and happy with such encouragement from Gates. Then there’s the possibility that some of these messages are from those trying to destabilize society and governments such as anti-vaccination messages that have come from Russian sources, as I described previously for Forbes.
Without more evidence, it’s not completely clear what the motivations and sources of many anonymous social media accounts may be. One thing’s for sure. By monkeypoxing around in this manner, they are not helping and seem to be hurting efforts to protect people against such outbreaks now and in the future.
Facebook posts stated on May 21, 2022
“Bill Gates is behind the monkeypox outbreaks.”
No, Bill Gates isn’t behind the monkeypox outbreak
If Your Time is short
- There’s no evidence to support the claim that Bill Gates is behind the monkeypox outbreak. Experts suspect it started to spread at raves in Europe.
See the sources for this fact-check