Our Dispatch on monkeypox conspiracies is featured in Coda Story’s weekly newsletter on science-related disinformation. Our analysis shows how homophobic disinformation has been spreading on Twitter, in some cases pushed by ring-wing commentators including Republican Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene. The known QAnon believer tweeted a provocatively-posed question: “if monkeypox is a sexually transmitted disease, why are kids getting it?” suggesting dangerous rhetoric against the LGBTQ+ community, a subgroup that has been disproportionately affected by the disease.
“Influential figures on the far-right used monkeypox infections in children to advance the ‘groomer’ narrative that attempts to frame LGBTQ+ people as being a danger to children and part of an insidious plan to engage in child sexual exploitation”, states the report. Twitter recently banned the term ‘groomer’ when describing trans and non-binary people as a violation of the platform’s hate speech policies.
Read the full Dispatch here.