According to a new survey, 11 per cent of Canadians believe China may have created the virus in a lab
Misinformation and conspiracy theories have become a hot topic during the COVID-19 pandemic, which some experts have called an “infodemic.”
Official fact-checking sites and agencies are popping up left and right, while tech giants like Facebook have been throwing major resources behind stopping the spread of fake news. Meanwhile, a documentary called Plandemic, full of dangerous misinformation and conspiracy theories, went viral this past week and amassed tens of millions of views on Facebook and YouTube before it was banned on those platforms.
According to a new study by Vox Pop Labs, which shared its results with the Logic, there’s a worrying percentage of Canadians who believe misinformation. They polled 2,271 Canadians and weighted the survey based on age, sex, education level and political affiliation.
The results say 11 per cent believe there’s some truth to the theory that the Chinese government engineered the coronavirus in a lab, while eight per cent believe there is “a great deal” of truth to it.
Meanwhile, five per cent believe there’s some truth and four per cent believe there’s a great deal of truth to the false claim that Bill Gates “is using the coronavirus to push a vaccine with a microchip capable of tracking people.” But when it comes to the earlier popular conspiracy theory that the virus was caused by 5G, only three per cent believe there’s some truth and one per cent believes there’s a great deal of truth to it.
People who got their news primarily from social media were more likely to believe misinformation. Head to the Logic to see how else the results differed based on demographics.