A photo and video clip of a Jan. 15 protest against expanded gas extraction in the Netherlands are being used out of context online to exaggerate the level of opposition to COVID-19 regulations in the country. Let’s take a look at the facts.
Photos of large crowds are often used out of context (see here, here, here, here and here) to exaggerate the public’s response to a given news event or cause. In fact, this is such a common tactic that it has become a satirical misinformation meme online. Similar to astroturfing campaigns, these tricks of context distort perceptions of public sentiment in an effort to manipulate others.
- “Fact check: Protest in Netherlands in response to gas extractions, not COVID-19 regulations” (Nayeli Lomeli, USA Today).
- “Fact Check-Video shows protest in Netherlands over gas extraction, not COVID-19 restrictions” (Reuters Fact Check).
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