MENA Monitor: Arabic COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation Online

Published: April 9, 2021
Authors: Ciaran O’Connor and Moustafa Ayad

This report is part of an ongoing series examining COVID-19 vaccine misinformation on Facebook in countries and regions across the world. This edition, focusing on Arabic-language communities in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) throughout January and February 2021, represents a landmark report in the series.

By tracing a handful of anti-vaccination pages on Facebook, researchers found an elaborate network of non-exisent think tanks, vaccination watchdogs, and antisemitic, conspiracy-laden YouTube channels with hundreds of thousands of followers.

This report builds on previous reports examining COVID-19 vaccine misinformation, which you can find on the Digital Dispatches section of the ISD website.

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The Business of Hate: Bankrolling Bigotry in Germany and the Online Funding of Hate Groups

The Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD) and the Global Disinformation Index (GDI) have published a new study which shows how 17 known German far right groups and actors allegedly use online funding services to fund their activities. These services include companies like Mastercard, Paypal, Giropay and WooCommerce). More than half of these online funding services have Terms of Service (ToS) that should prohibit their use by such sites.