Conspiracy theories are always bizarre, and a new one has surfaced in the UK, linking COVID-19 to 5G. As a result of its circulation, a number of phone towers have been set on fire. The country’s government has also called for social media networks to help stop the spread of the conspiracy theory.
The Guardian reports that believers of the conspiracy theory have set three mobile phone towers in the UK on fire. Engineers, as well as Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson, were threatened as well by those who believed there was a link between 5G and COVID-19.
UK culture secretary Oliver Dowden will have talks with social media platforms to help curb its spread. And YouTube is among the first to respond. The Google subsidiary said it will supress videos linking 5G to the novel coronavirus. A spokesperson said that such videos may be considered “borderline content” and subject to suppression.
But interestingly, 5G conspiracy theory videos that do not make the link won’t be headed to the chopping block. While they’re not as immediately dangerous, such conspiracies are still “misinform users in harmful ways” as described by the spokesperson.