Entertainment "Mad" and "diabolical": Bill Gates is surprised by the conspiracy theories about him
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SANT-CORONAVIRUS-GATES-COMPLOT: "Mad" and "diabolical": Bill Gates is surprised by the conspiracy theories of his subject
by Kate Kelland
LONDON (Reuters) - Bill Gates, Microsoft co-founder turned philanthropist, Said Wednesday surprised by the number of "crazy" and "evil" conspiracy theories concerning him, which have been spreading on social networks since the COVID-19 pandemic, and said he wanted to study what is behind these theories .
In an interview with Reuters, Bill Gates estimated that the millions of posts online about him - as well as Anthony Fauci, one of the top infectious disease officials in the United States - were probably partly due to the combination of the frightening viral pandemic and the growth of social media.
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"No one would have predicted that Dr. Fauci and I would be so important in these truly evil theories," the billionaire said. According to these theories, the two men are behind the pandemic in order to profit from the spread of the new coronavirus and to control people, in particular by inserting traceable microchips through vaccines.
"I'm very surprised by this. I hope it goes away," said Bill Gates, who stepped down as Microsoft president in 2014 and created the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation charity.
The philanthropist has pledged to support vaccine makers and spend at least $ 1.75 billion (€ 1.44 billion) in the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since the start of the pandemic, millions of conspiratorial messages have spread across the internet, fueling misinformation about the coronavirus, its origins and the motivations of those working to combat it.
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"But do people really believe this stuff?" Asked Bill Gates.
"We're really going to have to educate ourselves on this over the next year and figure out (...) how this changes people's behavior and how we should have minimized that."
Bill Gates praised Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins, director of the US Institutes of Health, whom he called "smart" and "wonderful" people. He added that he is looking forward to seeing that they will be able to work effectively under President Joe Biden's new administration.
"I sometimes had the impression that they were the only sane people in the US government," said Bill Gates, referring to the handling of the epidemic by former President Donald Trump.
(Kate Kelland, French version Anait Miridzhanian, edited by Blandine Hénault)
USA TODAY exclusive: Bill Gates discusses confronting climate change, says Joe Biden's energy and emissions goals are within reach .
"He's doing the right things, but we still do not have a plan," Bill Gates said of President Joe Biden's executive orders on climate change.The Microsoft co-founder and global health philanthropist said the past four years have been a wasted opportunity to combat the threat of a warming planet and U.S. leadership on the issue waned under Donald Trump.