Cutting through the nonsense of the crazy 5G conspiracy theories [Updated]
5G has been in the news a lot these last few days, for all the wrong reasons. Here are some links to try and break through the craziest theories doing the rounds.
We’ve sadly gone from crazy people posting silly links from their bedrooms, to offensive theories about a link between 5G and Coronavirus, to the very serious situation that has seen people set fire to base stations – putting many people at risk of losing vital communications.
It’s clearly gone from almost comical to deadly serious, and it seems both the UK Government and mobile industry are now working hard to try and end this nonsense once and for all.
In the near future, social media companies are going to be asked to step up their policing of such material being posted and shared online – although it seems it might be too little, too late.
I’ve posted my fair share of comments and opinions on Twitter, Facebook and web forums over the last week, but simply do not have the time to write a detailed counter attack of the huge amount of stuff being posted and shared daily – although I am happy to see that some sites and videos I reported have since been taken down.
Fortunately a number of people have taken the time to compile very detailed articles and videos to counter these attacks, so I’ve taken the liberty of linking to them so all of these articles can be easily found in one place.
- How the 5G coronavirus conspiracy theory tore through the Internet (James Temperton, Wired)
- Is 5G safe? Everything you need to know on the 5G-powered future (James O’Malley, Which?)
- 5G Conspiracy Theorists Are Using Fears About The Coronavirus To Make Money (Ryan Broderick, Buzzfeed)
- Here’s the Bonkers Conspiracy Theory Blaming 5G for the Coronavirus (Alex Shultz, GQ)
- British 5G towers are being set on fire because of coronavirus conspiracy theories (Tom Warren, The Verge)
- Coronavirus: Tech companies must tackle ‘crackpot’ 5G conspiracies, says government after more masts damaged (Samuel Lovett, The Independent)
- Coronavirus: Tech firms summoned over ‘crackpot’ 5G conspiracies (Leo Kelion, BBC)
- Coronavirus: YouTube tightens rules after David Icke 5G interview (Leo Kelion, BBC)
- Coronavirus: Scientists brand 5G claims ‘complete rubbish’ (Rachel Schraer and Eleanor Lawrie, BBC Reality Check)
- How did 5G conspiracy theorists become arsonists? (New Statesman)
- My Dad Got Hoaxed By the Anti-5G Conspiracy Movement (Megan Lily Large, Vice)
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: Myth busters (World Health Organisation)
- 5G conspiracy theorists weaponised coronavirus panic to further their own false agendas (Rhiannon Williams, The Independent)
- Burning Cell Towers, Out of Baseless Fear They Spread the Virus (Adam Satariano and Davey Alba, New York Times)
- Pulling apart a £339 anti-5G USB stick (Rory Cellan-Jones, BBC)
The Buzzfeed link is perhaps quite significant in that it doesn’t seek to address the conspiracy theories themselves, but rather talk about how many people behind them profit from the gullible. (You didn’t think they merely did this for fun, did you?)
Follow the links and you’ll invariably end up finding a site selling some form of protection, or a cure, or ask you to donate to a cause. All the time asking you to share the links to let the world know the ‘truth’ (and also spend money).
I’ve even found a site that monthly subscription, Netflix style, to access a huge library of crazy ill-informed videos. Frankly, Netflix has enough fiction and comedy to keep you going, so save your money.
If you have any good links, please post them in the comments below.