5G phone towers are set on fire in the United Kingdom. Online Conspiracy theories have misleadingly connected cell-phone towers to the disease. At least 3 towers burned this week. If the conspiracy was intentional or just an April fools prank is still to be understood. Police and fire services came to extinguish the flame.
If you’re just waking up… firefighters put out a blaze at a mobile phone mast in Liverpool overnight. No detail yet on cause but anti-5G Facebook groups delighted.
Don’t think politicians grasp just how widespread the Coronavirus/5G conspiracy now is. https://t.co/giP8QSWl4P
— Jim Waterson (@jimwaterson) April 4, 2020
But Stephen Powis, the National Health Service director, did not like the people’s behavior. People should not take such action against the infrastructure. The state officials need to address this emergency immediately. Police are currently investigating how the towers caught fire.
But such rumors and conspiracies spread through social media networks. There are many social media groups on Facebook which deliberately spread fake news. Nextdoor is another such platform. Thousands of members repeat false messages. But they all claim 5G is supposedly harmful. Because they think that it causes Coronavirus.
5G Conspiracy theory
One theory claims that the novel Coronavirus spread in Wuhan because it has 5G towers. It is now spreading to other cities using 5th generation broadband. The virus supposedly spreads through network lines or wires. These false conspiracies do not consider the virus’s spread in countries like Iran and Japan, where it is not in use.
This is the consequence of those bonkers Facebook conspiracy theories about 5G. Key workers getting harassed on the street. pic.twitter.com/5z35r6sabp
— Charlie Haynes (@charliehtweets) April 2, 2020
There is no scientific evidence that links 5G to the COVID-19 virus. Nor is there any health effect of 5G. But even though it uses a higher range of frequency than 4G and 3G, regulators in the UK have recorded its radiation levels to be way below international limits.
This has not stopped these fake rumors from spreading. Some people are even harassing workers laying fiber optic cables for 5G installation. They claim turning on 5G will kill everyone.
While medical professionals are busy fighting a contagious virus, telecom workers and social media experts are fighting an equally destructive viral spread of online stupidity.
Suryapratim Ray is an engineer, author, robotics hobbyist, and an active Quoran. Being a technical blogger, he covers the good, bad, and ugly of science on a regular basis at Sciencenews18. In addition to his passion for writing, he’s equally keen on learning classical music.