Microsoft co-founder turned philanthropist Bill Gates said Wednesday he has been taken aback by the volume of “crazy” and “evil” conspiracy theories about him spreading on social media during the COVID-19 pandemic, but said he would like to explore what is behind them.
"Crazy" and "evil." That’s what Bill Gates thinks about the volume of conspiracy theories about him spreading on social media during the coronavirus pandemic.
In an interview with Reuters, the Microsoft co-founder turned philanthropist said the combination of a frightening pandemic and the rise of social media likely fostered the millions of online posts and those theories about him and the U.S.'
Top infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci.
"Nobody would have predicted that I and Dr. Fauci would be so prominent in really kind of evil theories about, you know, did we create the pandemic or are we trying to profit from it and on and on.
And so, I'm very surprised by that.
I hope it goes away.” Through his foundation, the billionaire has committed at least $1.75 billion to the global response to the health crisis.
He’s baffled by the claims that he and Fauci created the pandemic to try to control people and that they wanted to use vaccines to insert trackable microchips into people.
“Do people really believe that stuff?
I'm, you know, we're going to have to get educated about this over the next year and understand, you know, how does it change people's behavior?
How should we have minimized this either, you know, working with the social media companies or explaining what we were up to in a better way?" As vaccines are being rolled out across the world, Gates also said good communication and good leadership are key to getting more people inoculated.
“The benefit to society, everyone or a high percentage of people participating should be very clear.
Although, you know, all the crazy conspiracy theories may cut into that.” He also praised Fauci and U.S. National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins as "smart" and "wonderful people" and said he was "excited" about the team that President Joe Biden has assembled to handle the health crisis.