Super-diffusori di disinformazione sul vaccino contro il COVID-19

Monitoraggio della diffusione via Facebook della disinformazione sullo sviluppo del vaccino contro il COVID-19

a cura di Kendrick McDonald, John Gregory, Sophia Tewa, Virginia Padovese, e Marie Richter

Mentre il COVID-19 continua a diffondersi nel mondo, ricercatori e scienziati sono al lavoro per produrre un vaccino che protegga dal virus. Tuttavia, secondo un nuovo studio effettuato da NewsGuard, notizie false e fuorvianti sui vaccini in generale – e sul vaccino contro il COVID-19 in particolare – rischiano di ridurre l’impatto di tale vaccino, seminando dubbi e sfiducia tra milioni di utenti.

In questo report abbiamo elencato 34 pagine Facebook che sono super-diffusori di disinformazione sullo sviluppo di un vaccino contro il COVID-19. Le pagine citate in questo studio raggiungono un pubblico molto vasto: molte di esse hanno oltre 100.000 follower, per un totale di 14.139.288 like.

Con la pubblicazione di questo report, stiamo contemporaneamente fornendo queste informazioni anche all’Organizzazione mondiale della sanità, con la quale abbiamo una partnership in base alla quale condividiamo i risultati dei nostri studi.

I post che troverete nel report contengono inesattezze e affermazioni infondate sulla sicurezza e sugli effetti di qualsiasi futuro vaccino contro il COVID-19 o sui vaccini in generale.

Tutto ciò sta accadendo proprio mentre la fiducia del pubblico nei confronti dei vaccini sta diminuendo. Un sondaggio di Pew Research del settembre 2020 ha rilevato che il 49% degli statunitensi ‘in questo momento, sicuramente o probabilmente, non si vaccinerebbe’ contro il COVID-19. ‘L’intenzione di vaccinarsi contro il COVID-19 è scesa di 21 punti percentuali, rispetto al 72% di maggio’ stando ai dati dello stesso sondaggio. In Europa, uno studio del giugno 2020 pubblicato sull’European Journal of Health Economics ha rilevato che il 7,2% dei partecipanti provenienti da Danimarca, Francia, Germania, Italia, Portogallo, Paesi Bassi e Regno Unito non si sarebbe vaccinato contro COVID-19 se un vaccino fosse stato disponibile.

Per la maggior parte dei post falsi o fuorvianti che abbiamo identificato, Facebook non ha fornito alcun avviso, segnalazione da parte di fact-checker, o link a fonti più affidabili. Fino al 26 ottobre, solo cinque dei 69 post esaminati da NewsGuard erano accompagnati da comunicazioni di fact-checker indipendenti. Tuttavia, alcune affermazioni accompagnate da avvisi di fact-checker non riportavano alcun avvertimento quando comparivano in altre pagine Facebook o in articoli diversi.

Ad esempio, la pagina Coconut Health, che fa parte della rete del network di pseudoscienza, considerato inaffidabile da NewsGuard, Health Impact News, ha pubblicato un post il 17 maggio 2020, che affermava falsamente che un vaccino contro il COVID-19 avrebbe ‘modificato geneticamente’ gli esseri umani. Il post includeva un fact-checking della Reuters che spiegava che le informazioni contenute in quel post erano false. Tuttavia, tre mesi dopo, la pagina ha nuovamente pubblicato questo contenuto senza che venisse segnalato da alcun avviso.

Il 3 agosto 2020, la stessa pagina ha pubblicato un link a un articolo che affermava falsamente che ‘banche, aziende e governo sono i driver di questa falsa pandemia e stanno anche lavorando insieme per vaccinare il mondo’. Secondo l’articolo queste forze potrebbero utilizzare l’ingegneria genetica e le tecnologie di tracciamento nei ‘nuovi vaccini e nel vaccino contro il Covid’.

Nessuna di queste affermazioni è vera e sono state tutte smentite diverse volte da quando il post è stato pubblicato il 3 agosto su Coconut Health.

Il principale super-spreader statunitense inserito nella nostra lista, associato al sito complottista World Truth TV, ha pubblicato lo stesso link – con la falsa affermazione che il vaccino contro il COVID-19 conterrebbe un microchip – in più di 100 post in un periodo di sei mesi. La pagina ha così ripetutamente esposto il suo pubblico di quasi 1,7 milioni di utenti a informazioni false.

In Italia, NewsGuard ha scoperto una rete di sette pagine Facebook che condividono gli articoli, inclusi quelli con informazioni non corrette sul vaccino contro il COVID-19, esclusivamente dallo stesso sito, Oltre.tv. Le pagine hanno un totale di 1.509.414 like e sei su sette non rivelano di avere alcun collegamento con Oltre.tv.

Otto delle pagine Facebook elencate di seguito erano state precedentemente identificate da NewsGuard come super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19, non in relazione al vaccino. Non solo hanno continuato a condividere disinformazione con il loro vasto pubblico, ma tre di queste pagine hanno addirittura registrato un aumento di like dalla pubblicazione del precedente report di NewsGuard nell’aprile del 2020.


Super-diffusori di disinformazione sul vaccino contro il COVID-19 in Italia

Il network di Oltre.tv

Le seguenti sette pagine Facebook condividono regolarmente i contenuti pubblicati da Oltre.tv, sito che ha diffuso disinformazione su vaccini e immigrazione, considerato inaffidabile da NewsGuard. Nessuna di queste pagine sembra condividere contenuti di altri siti e nessuna di queste pagine, ad eccezione della pagina Facebook ufficiale di Oltre.tv, rivela di essere collegata a Oltre.tv. Queste sette pagine raggiungono nel loro insieme oltre 1,5 milioni di utenti.


Informare X Resistere

1.056.750 Facebook like

Lanciata nel luglio 2009, la pagina è associata al sito InformareXResistere.fr, un sito conservatore che ha promosso teorie del complotto e affermazioni pseudoscientifiche, considerato inaffidabile da NewsGuard. Il sito ha pubblicato solo sette articoli nel 2020, l’ultimo dei quali risale al 2 aprile. La pagina Facebook di Informare x Resistere ha interrotto la condivisione di contenuti dal sito InformareXResistere.fr nel giugno 2019. Dal giugno 2019 la pagina condivide principalmente e quasi esclusivamente contenuti dal sito Oltre.tv.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 23 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”. L’articolo è stato condiviso dalla pagina cinque volte tra il 23 giugno e il 18 settembre 2020.

La pagina Facebook Informare X Resistere non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard all’indirizzo email indicato nei contatti.


Lo Sai

128.584 Facebook like

Una pagina creata nel luglio 2017 che condivide regolarmente i contenuti di Oltre.tv. La sezione Informazioni descrive la pagina come un ‘blog personale’ ma non identifica di chi si tratta.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 23 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”. L’articolo è stato condiviso dalla pagina cinque volte tra il 23 giugno e il 18 settembre 2020.

La pagina Facebook Lo sai non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard per avere un commento sul contenuto dei post sopra citati.


Salute e Alimentazione

121.980 Facebook like

Una pagina creata nel giugno 2011 che condivide regolarmente i contenuti di Oltre.tv. La sezione Informazioni descrive la pagina come una pagina ‘di salute e benessere’.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 28 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”.

La pagina Facebook Salute e Alimentazione non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard per avere un commento sul contenuto dei post sopra citati.


Adoro ascoltare le bugie quando conosco la verità

75.744 Facebook like

Una pagina creata nel gennaio 2010 che condivide regolarmente i contenuti di Oltre.tv. La sezione Informazioni descrive la pagina come una pagina di ‘intrattenimento’.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 23 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”.

La pagina Facebook Adoro ascoltare le bugie quando conosco la verità non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard per avere un commento sul contenuto dei post sopra citati.


Manipolazione mediatica

59.941 Facebook like

Una pagina creata nel gennaio 2012 che condivide regolarmente i contenuti di Oltre.tv. Nella sezione Informazioni si legge: ‘Come i media manipolano l’opinione pubblica’.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 23 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”.

La pagina Facebook Manipolazione mediatica non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard per avere un commento sul contenuto dei post sopra citati.


Oltre.tv

34.698 Facebook like

La pagina Facebook del sito Oltre.tv, creata nel maggio del 2019. Nella pagina si legge: ‘Oltre.tv è un sito indipendente e apartitico che riunisce tanti autori con passioni diverse ma legati da un interesse comune: l’amore per la corretta informazione’.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 23 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”.

La pagina Facebook di Oltre.tv non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard all’indirizzo email indicato nei contatti.


Lo sai?

31.717 Facebook like

Una pagina creata nell’aprile del 2018 che condivide regolarmente i contenuti di Oltre.tv. La sezione Informazioni spiega che la pagina tratta ‘simbologia, massoneria e tutte le società segrete’.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 29 agosto 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv che afferma falsamente che “uno studio del Dipartimento della Difesa americano ha confermato che l’aumento di probabilità di contrarre il coronavirus è del 36% in più negli individui vaccinati con l’antinfluenzale”.
  • Un post del 23 giugno 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su Oltre.tv contenente un’intervista allo psichiatra italiano Alessandro Meluzzi (il cui account Twitter è stato inserito da NewsGuard nel suo studio sui super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19), in cui si afferma: “Per i vaccini c’è Bill Gates, uno psicopatico nerd che spera di fare i vaccini mettendo un microchip, controllato dai satelliti 5G, per trasformarci in robot”.

La pagina Facebook Lo sai? non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato da NewsGuard per avere un commento sul contenuto dei post sopra citati.


Pagina non collegata al network di Oltre.TV

AmbienteBio

391.234 Facebook like

La pagina Facebook del sito AmbienteBio.it, considerato inaffidabile da NewsGuard, creata nel maggio 2011 e definita “una risorsa informativa che affronta le tematiche relative a uno stile di vita sano e virtuoso in ogni senso. Include una filosofia che necessita di “piccoli passi indietro” rispetto a una civiltà post-industriale, basata sul mito di una crescita illimitata, per puntare invece ad un ritorno alle risorse naturali, ad una difesa della biosfera anche grazie alle nuove tecnologie”. La pagina ha condiviso contenuti falsi e fuorvianti sulla pandemia di COVID-19.

Esempi di disinformazione sui vaccini:

  • Un post del 24 marzo 2020 con un link a un articolo pubblicato su AmbienteBio.it che afferma falsamente che Bill Gates “impianterà i microchip per combattere il Covid-19 e per tracciare le vaccinazioni”.
  • Un post del 31 agosto 2020 in cui si afferma falsamente che “Il vaccino antinfluenzale aggrava COVID-19”.

La pagina Facebook di AmbienteBio non ha risposto a un messaggio inviato all’indirizzo di posta elettronica riportato sulla pagina, in cui NewsGuard chiedeva un commento sui post sopra elencati.


U.S. COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation Super-Spreaders

WorldTruth.TV

1,683,036 Facebook page likes

The Facebook Page of WorldTruth.tv, a NewsGuard Red-rated website that publishes conspiracy theories about health and politics.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • 125 separate posts from April to September 2020 of an article falsely claiming that a COVID-19 vaccine would use “microchips” as part of a “global tracking system.”
  • 12 separate posts in August 2020 linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would “alter” human DNA.
WorldTruth.tv repeatedly posts the same links with misinformation.

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts but did not receive a response.


The Truth About Cancer

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

1,140,726 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page that has published misinformation about vaccines and other health topics.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A Sept. 3, 2020, post suggesting that efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19 were “obedience training” and linking to an article falsely stating that the flu vaccine would increase your risk of developing COVID-19.
  • A June 13, 2020, post linking to an article falsely stating that Bill Gates will use the COVID-19 vaccine to surveil people. A Facebook label warned readers that independent fact-checkers found the content to be “false.”

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts and received a response from a customer service representative that did not address the posts.


EnVolve

684,972 Facebook page likes

The Facebook Page of a conservative news site that has published false claims and unsubstantiated conspiracy theories about U.S. politics, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A June 16, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that legislation in Colorado that would force parents who refuse to give their children a COVID-19 vaccine into a government-run re-education program. The bill, which was signed into law later in June, does not make any reference to COVID-19 or a COVID-19 vaccine, although it would require parents to watch an online video about vaccine science before obtaining a nonmedical vaccine exemption for their children.
  • An April 21, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), will personally profit from a COVID-19 vaccine.

NewsGuard emailed Aaron Smith, the owner of EnVolve, seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


GreenMedInfo.com

539,008  Facebook page likes

The Facebook page of a NewsGuard Red-rated pseudoscience website that has published false “alternative” health information, including “natural” cures for COVID-19 and cancer.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 20, 2020, video post containing false information about vaccines, including a claim that a COVID-19 vaccine could change your DNA.
  • An April 14, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would use a “microchip.”

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Activist Post

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

516,870 Facebook page likes

The Facebook Page of Activist Post, a NewsGuard Red-rated site that has frequently published debunked conspiracy theories.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A June 20, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine will alter your DNA.
  • An April 20, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would include a “microchip.”

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Dr. Christiane Northrup

480,840 Facebook page likes

The Facebook page of a Maine gynecologist who was regularly featured as a health expert on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and has promoted false claims about the vaccine for human papillomavirus (HPV). The page is verified by Facebook, which the company says “means that Facebook confirmed that this is the authentic Page or profile for this public figure, media company or brand.”

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A June 27, 2020, post falsely claiming that potential COVID-19 vaccines are not being tested against a placebo in clinical trials.
With her verified Page, Dr. Northrup has shared vaccine misinformation to hundreds of thousands of Facebook users even before COVID-19.
  • A June 9, 2020, post linking to an article falsely claiming that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA.

NewsGuard emailed Diane Grover, Dr. Christiane Northrup’s business manager, seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Coconut Health

308,713 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page affiliated with Health Impact News, a News network of websites that has published false information about health topics.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 3, 2020, post linking to an article falsely claiming that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA, that it will use tracking technology, and that the COVID-19 pandemic is fake.
  • An April 15, 2020, post linking to an article falsely claiming that a COVID-19 vaccine would include a “microchip.”

NewsGuard emailed Brian Shilhavy, owner of the Health Impact News network that operates Coconut Health, seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Dr. Tenpenny on Vaccines and Current Events

233,41 Facebook page likes

The Facebook Page of Dr. Sherri Tenpenny, a noted anti-vaccine activist.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A Sept. 12, 2020, post linking to an article falsely reporting that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA and make you “transhuman.”
  • A July 29, 2020, post with a link to a video interview in which Tenpenny states that a COVID-19 vaccine may “encode” the virus with “various things” that can be activated later, such as 5G technology.

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


National Vaccine Information Center

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

217,058 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page associated with the NVIC.org, the NewsGuard Red-rated website of the nonprofit National Vaccine Information Center, which has published articles containing false and unsubstantiated claims about vaccinations.

Examples of vaccine misinformation

  • A Sept. 15, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA and make you “transhuman.”
  • A June 9, 2020, post linking to an article falsely claiming that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA.

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Vaccination Information Network (VINE)

157,470 Facebook page likes

A Facebook page with anti-vaccination content run from the U.S. and 10 other countries, including Australia, Hungary, Norway, Sri Lanka.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 27, 2020, post, made from Australia, linking to an article suggesting that efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19 were “obedience training” and falsely stating that the flu vaccine increases the risk of developing COVID-19.
  • An April 15, 2020, post, made from Hungary, linking to a story falsely claiming that a COVID-19 vaccine would include a “microchip.”

NewsGuard emailed an address from VaccineInformationNetwork.com seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Now The End Begins

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

150,334 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page affiliated with NowTheEndBegins.com, a NewsGuard Red-rated website that connects news stories to Biblical prophecies that has published false stories on a variety of topics.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A July 4, 2020, post linking to a story that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would include a “microchip.”
  • A May 12, 2020, post linking to a story that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would include a “microchip.”

NewsGuard emailed an address listed on the page seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


Stop Mandatory Vaccination

142,971 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page run from the U.S. and the Philippines with anti-vaccine posts affiliated with the NewsGuard Red-rated site StopMandatoryVaccination.com.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A July 24, 2020, post linking to a story that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA.
  • A March 26, 2020, post linking to a story that falsely claims that the flu vaccine increases the risk of developing COVID-19. A Facebook label warned readers that independent fact-checkers found the content to be “false.”

NewsGuard emailed Larry Cook, owner of Stop Mandatory Vaccination, seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


U.K. COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation Super-Spreaders

Energy Therapy

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

1,961,077 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page associated with the NewsGuard Red-rated site EnergyTherapy.biz sharing content related to organic health and philosophy.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A Sept. 21, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine will alter your DNA.
Energy Therapy uses alternative characters to refer to “COVID vaccine” in a post with misinformation.
  • A June 27,2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a COVID-19 vaccine would alter your DNA.

NewsGuard emailed Jennifer Tanna, one of the owners of Energy Therapy, seeking comment on the above posts, but did not receive a response.


London Real

564,620 Facebook page likes

A Facebook Page associated with the NewsGuard Red-rated video website FreedomPlatform.tv, which has produced videos and interviews promoting false claims about the COVID-19 pandemic and various conspiracies.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A July 30, 2020, post linking to a video interview of anti-vaccine activist Dr. Sherri Tenpenny, who falsely claimed that the coronavirus was “caused by a bad strain of flu vaccine that was circulating between 2013 and 2015.”
  • A May 8, 2020, post linking to a video interview with anti-vaccine activist Judy Mikovits, creator of the discredited “Plandemic” conspiracy documentary, which included false claims that getting a flu vaccine will increase your risk of developing COVID-19. Facebook added a warning label to the post, stating that independent fact-checkers checked the content and reviewed it as “false.”

NewsGuard emailed a general address for the London Real website seeking comment on the above posts but did not receive a response.


French COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation Super-Spreaders

Santé Nutrition

1,029,040 Facebook page likes

The Facebook page of Sante-Nutrition.org, a NewsGuard Red-rated site that regularly promotes false and misleading health stories, including misinformation about vaccines.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • Nine posts published between April and October 2020 linking to a Sante-Nutrition.org article (republished from NewsGuard Red-rated site French.Mercola.com) that falsely claimed the flu vaccine could increase the risk of contracting the coronavirus.
This Sante-Nutrition article included misinformation about the flu vaccine and COVID-19 with no warning.
  • An Aug. 23, 2020, post linking to a Sante-Nutrition.org article that featured a YouTube video with false COVID-19 claims, including that “when you will be given the mandatory vaccine, which is a chip, you will be connected to artificial intelligence, this sort of enormous cloud created to dominate you, and then we’ll all be slaves.”

Santé Nutrition did not respond to two Facebook messages seeking comment.


La vérité sur notre monde

822,067 Facebook page likes

A Facebook page managed anonymously from Tunisia that appears to be associated with LesMoutonsRebelles.com, a NewsGuard Red-rated site that regularly spreads conspiracy theories.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An April 12, 2020, post linking to a LesMoutonsRebelles.com article (republished from NewsGuard Red-rated French site Geopolintel.fr) that falsely claimed that Bill Gates will use microchip implants and “digital certificates” to find out who has been tested and vaccinated against the coronavirus.
  • A May 13, 2020, post linking to a LesMoutonsRebelles.com article (republished from Chilean news site ElCiudadano.com) that cited anti-vaccine advocate Robert Kennedy Jr. and falsely claimed that Bill Gates is involved in a conspiracy to control the COVID-19 vaccine market — and the vaccine market writ large — in order to control the planet.

La vérité sur notre monde did not respond to two Facebook messages seeking comment.


S’informer autrement

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

226,667 Facebook page likes

A Facebook page created in 2018 that appears to be run by French conspiracy theorist Johann Fakra and that claims to offer “Alternative news that’s different from what the mainstream media hammers home.”

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 15, 2020, post that claimed the COVID-19 vaccine was developed years ago, with the aim of modifying people’s DNA and sterilizing the population.
  • An Aug. 10, 2020, post (reposted from Johann Fakra’s own Facebook account), in which Fakra falsely claimed that the COVID-19 vaccine contains toxic products and would come with an implanted identification chip.

S’informer autrement did not respond to two Facebook messages seeking comment.


Réseau International

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

156,470 Facebook page likes

The Facebook page of the NewsGuard Red-rated site ReseauInternational.net, a popular French source of conspiracy theories that is frequently cited on social media and on sites spreading deceptive information.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 21, 2020, post linking to a ReseauInternational article and YouTube video that promoted the claim that a Microsoft vaccine for COVID-19 would track people using nanoparticles and 5G technology. Although the video was later removed by YouTube for violating its Terms of Service, the site also provided a Google Drive link as a back-up for readers.
  • An April 12, 2020, post linking to a ReseauInternational.net article (republished from Geopolintel.fr) that falsely claimed that Bill Gates will use microchip implants to track those who have been vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.

Réseau International did not respond to two emails seeking comment.


Ce que vous Cachent les Médias

153,021 Facebook page likes

A Facebook page created in 2013 that regularly shares unverified social media posts and is run by administrators in France, Algeria, Morocco, and Jordan, according to its Page Transparency section. Its About section states: “Journalists don’t believe the lies of politicians (whispered by the Zionist lobby), but they repeat them, which is worse!”

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A July 6, 2020, post linking to a YouTube video produced by NewsGuard Red-rated, Switzerland-based site KLA.tv, which falsely claimed the COVID-19 vaccine was developed before the pandemic and is meant to be forcibly administered to millions of people, without proper testing.
  • A May 8, 2020, post linking to an article on the NewsGuard Red-rated site Fawkes-News.com, which falsely claimed that Bill Gates offered a bribe to speed up the passing of a bill in Nigeria that would mandate vaccination against COVID-19.

Ce que vous Cachent les Médias did not respond to two Facebook messages seeking comment.


L’Eveilleur Quantique

144,348 Facebook page likes

The Facebook page of Jean Pierre Marrigues, a motivational speaker who describes L’Eveilleur Quantique as “a space where quantum physics, neuroscience, epigenetics, neurobiology and energy psychology intersect.” 

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • May 1, 2020, recording of a Facebook live video, in which anti-vaccine advocate and Swiss doctor Christian Tal Schaller made multiple false health claims, including that the COVID-19 “vaccine that they will soon force you to take is a vaccine with a microchip in it in order to control you all.”
  • An Aug. 3, 2020, post featuring a YouTube video produced by NewsGuard Red-rated French site TV Libertés, in which French geneticist Alexandra Henrion-Caude falsely asserted that the COVID-19 vaccine was given by force to human “guinea pigs” in South Africa. A Facebook label warned readers that independent fact-checkers found the content to be “partly false.”

Asked to comment on the first post, Marrigues told NewsGuard in an email, “We focus on personal development, and we have felt through our pages a general concern. This [Facebook] live was initially intended to suggest food for thought about this phase…. The guest who takes part in this live is a doctor, who gives his opinion and his vision. Everyone is free to take what they want, and to ‘throw away’ what does not suit them. Again, the goal of our pages is to share, not impose, nor create psychosis, let alone fuel the fear that is already everywhere.”

As for the second post, Marrigues said that Henrion-Caude “gives, beyond her explanations, her scientific point of view. Again, it is sharing a point of view and opinion. I do not know personally if these theories were confirmed or not.” Marrigues added that Henrion-Caude and Schaller “may be controversial today, because they have a different point of view from the majority. However, they are still health professionals. Therefore, for me, they are a ‘reliable’ source.”


Inform’Action

114,546 Facebook page likes

The Facebook page of the nonprofit Inform’Action, based in Toulouse, France, which says that it “selects and publishes, in a collaborative manner, the best information, by promoting ideas and points of view that are not covered enough.”

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An April 29, 2020, post linking to Geopolintel.fr article that falsely claimed that Bill Gates will launch “human-implantable capsules that have ‘digital certificates’ which can show who has been tested for the coronavirus and who has been vaccinated against it.”
  • An Aug. 22, 2020, post featuring a YouTube video that falsely claimed Bill Gates’ COVID-19 vaccine will permanently alter a person’s DNA. A Facebook label warned readers that independent fact-checkers found the content to be “false.”

In a phone interview with NewsGuard in October 2020, Akina Schira, president of the nonprofit Inform’Action, maintained that the claim made in the first post was true. “Nanoparticles in vaccines, it’s official… It’s a technology that was implemented and developed by the economic sector without the approval of the people.”

Asked about the second post, Schira told NewsGuard: “Yes, [the vaccine] genetically modifies cells so it’s genetic modification.” He also took issue with Facebook’s warning label, saying “Facebook will say that we published fake news, when Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg are concretely the same actors that we denounce at the citizen level… Companies like Facebook that have rolled out fact-checking have simply set up this fact checking tool, not because they are sincere, simply because they want to keep their position of domination.”


Esprits Inspiration

502,148 Facebook page likes

A Facebook page created in 2015 that sells clothing and promotes a variety of memes, news, and nature posts. Its About section says: “The important thing is not to convince, but to provide food for thought.”

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 27, 2020, post showing a letter that it falsely claimed would allow parents to refuse to have their children receive vaccines in school, including against COVID-19, as well as COVID-19 diagnostic tests. A Facebook label warned readers that independent fact-checkers found the content to be “false.”
  • An April 30, 2020, post (translated from an article on the U.S. anti-vaccine, NewsGuard Red-rated site ChildrensHealthDefense.org), which falsely claims that Bill Gates planned to use the pandemic to force “his ‘dictatorial’ vaccine programs on all American children – and adults.”

Esprits Inspiration did not respond to two emails seeking comment.


Vraie Pharmacie

160,302 Facebook page likes

A Facebook page that primarily shares content from the NewsGuard Red-rated health site Sante-Nutrition.org. The page does not provide any information about its mission, except for a statement on its About section saying “The real pharmacy is in nature.”

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • Seven 2020 posts linking to a Sante-Nutrition.org article (republished from NewsGuard Red-rated site French.Mercola.com) that falsely claims that the flu vaccine could increase the risk of contracting the coronavirus.
  • An Aug. 24, 2020, post linking to a Sante-Nutrition.org article that features a YouTube video with false COVID-19 claims, including that “when you will be given the mandatory vaccine, which is a chip, you will be connected to artificial intelligence, this sort of enormous cloud created to dominate you, and then we’ll all be slaves.” 

Vraie Pharmacie did not respond to two Facebook messages seeking comment.


German COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation Super-Spreaders

Zeitzumaufwachen

61,560 Facebook page likes

Launched in February 2013 in Germany, the page is associated with an online blog with the same name, Zeitzumaufwachen (Timetowakeup). The Facebook page publishes news articles, videos, and photos that often support U.S. President Donald Trump and question established medical practices.  

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A July 20, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that the German government was planning a “Corona mass vaccination,” and that mRNA vaccines alter people’s genes.
  • A June 15, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that planned corona vaccines would alter people’s genes.

A representative of Zeitzumaufwachen told NewsGuard in an email: “We are a small group of 5 private individuals who take up current topics and present them for discussion to our readers. We also put the veracity up for discussion to get other opinions. We therefore do not see ourselves in a position to permanently check the veracity of the shared content for the publicly accepted correctness of it. Particularly with changing factual situations, from official sources, we are currently facing a difficult task. At the time of publication of the two posts you mentioned, we could not identify any misinformation in them.”


AUGEN AUF

Previous COVID-19 Misinformation Super-spreader

58,183 Facebook page likes

A German-language page that covers health and world news and is managed from Austria, according to Facebook. The page was created in October 2013 and posts links, memes, photos, and videos.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A June 17, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are caused by vaccines and 5G technology.
  • A May 29, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a coronavirus vaccine would cause autoimmune diseases and alter people’s DNA.
  • A May 29, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a vaccine developed by Bill Gates would alter people’s DNA.

AUGEN AUF did not respond to a Facebook message inquiring about the posts listed above.


TTIP – Aktionsbündnis – Österreich

57,922 Facebook page likes

A German-language page managed from Austria that is connected to the site NPR.News.eulu.info that was established in opposition to several EU trade agreements, and has published numerous conspiracy theories, including about 9/11 and COVID-19. The Facebook page was launched in July 2014.The Facebook Page of WorldTruth.tv, a NewsGuard Red-rated website that publishes conspiracy theories about health and politics.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • An Aug. 1, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a vaccine developed by the biotech firm Moderna and supported by Bill Gates and Anthony Fauci would alter people’s DNA.
  • A May 17, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that Bill Gates plans to implement mandatory vaccinations with microchips.

TTIP – Aktionsbündnis – Österreich did not respond to a Facebook message inquiring about the posts listed above.


Watergate.tv

47,005 Facebook page likes

Germany-based and launched in July 2016, the page is associated with the right-wing, Eurosceptic, and anti-Merkel NewsGuard Red-rated website Watergate.tv that covers German and international politics. The Facebook page mainly shares articles from that site.A Facebook Page that has published misinformation about vaccines and other health topics.

Examples of vaccine misinformation:

  • A July 23, 2020, post linking to an article that falsely claims that a coronavirus vaccine would alter people’s DNA.
  • A July 20, 2018, post linking to an article that falsely claims that unvaccinated children are healthier than vaccinated ones and that vaccines contain “glyphosate, formaldehyde, aluminum and cells from aborted fetuses and kidney cells from African monkeys.”

Watergate.tv did not respond to a Facebook message inquiring about the posts listed above.


Methodology and Data Set

To qualify as Super-spreaders, Facebook Pages had to meet three simple criteria:

  • In the U.S., the U.K., France, and Italy, they have more than 100,000 page likes on Facebook, or are part of a network with at least one page of that size. In Germany, they have more than 40,000 page likes on Facebook.
  • They have posted clearly and egregiously false content about a COVID vaccine
  • They were active as of October 26, 2020. In other words, Facebook had not acted to remove them prior to our publication of this data.

Our analysts derived this list in part by tracing which Facebook Pages had linked to false stories on websites from our COVID-19 misinformation tracker. This data was supplemented with additional research and reporting.

Two caveats regarding what is a work in progress: These Facebook Pages may not be the most frequent offenders or be the publishers of false COVID-19 misinformation with the largest audiences. The examples we list for each page do not necessarily represent an exhaustive list of all the times the page published COVID-19 misinformation.

Click here to download the dataset in spreadsheet form. If you are aware of another account that meets these criteria, please report it here and our team will review it.

Scroll down for a list of some of the most egregious examples of vaccine misinformation “Super-spreaders” we’ve found so far.


Nota della redazione: dopo la pubblicazione di questo report, i due post della pagina Activist Post sono stati rimossi da Facebook.

Correzioni: in una versione precedente di questo report, NewsGuard aveva pubblicato dei dati nell’introduzione che non riflettevano accuratamente quanto riportato nell’elenco delle pagine. Di conseguenza, NewsGuard ha aggiornato il numero di pagine, post, post verificati e follower totali. Inoltre, il numero di pagine precedentemente identificate da NewsGuard come super-diffusori di disinformazione sul COVID-19 è otto, non dieci, come affermato in precedenza. Il report includeva anche una data errata per un post di agosto 2020 dalla pagina Vraie Pharmacie. Il post è stato pubblicato il 24 agosto. Infine, a causa di un errore di produzione, in una versione precedente di questo report gli esempi elencati nella pagina Facebook francese L’Eveilleur Quantique provenivano da Inform’Action, il cui nome mancava. NewsGuard si scusa per gli errori.