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Mon Aug 31, 2020, 04:24 PM

Infected by doubt: A 26-year-old film editor's descent into coronavirus vaccine conspiracy theories

Washington Post

It began as a freelance job. Micah Conrad would wake up midmorning, check his email and begin downloading videos that had arrived while he slept. He would brew coffee, drinking it on the narrow patio of the small apartment he shares with his wife in a sun-bleached building near the intersection of Hollywood and Sunset boulevards in Los Angeles. Then it was back inside, where he would edit footage for the next 10 hours at a standing desk in the corner of their bedroom.

A 26-year-old aspiring filmmaker clinging to the lowest rungs of Hollywood’s hierarchy, Conrad often took work as it came. The virtual conference whose presentations he was now polishing provided at least a week of steady employment at a time when the coronavirus pandemic had cut off many of his regular sources of income.

Then, on a Sunday night in late April, he went on Facebook to announce that the conference was providing him with something else: a revelation that challenged his understanding of his body, his government and — above all — the infection that was ending and changing lives across the country.

Conrad had been editing videos for an event called the Health Freedom Summit. The faces he was studying for so many hours on his computer screen belonged to some of the world’s most influential anti-vaccine activists and coronavirus skeptics.

There was Andrew Wakefield, the British ex-doctor behind a fraudulent study linking autism to the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine; Robert F. Kennedy Jr., whose transformation from crusading litigator to anti-vaccination firebrand had outraged other members of one of America’s most storied political dynasties; Judy Mikovits, a disgraced virologist who would soon become famous for her starring role in “Plandemic,” a video that promoted conspiracy theories about the pandemic while attacking Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert.

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Reply Infected by doubt: A 26-year-old film editor's descent into coronavirus vaccine conspiracy theories (Original post)
brooklynite Aug 2020 OP
PoindexterOglethorpe Aug 2020 #1
TreasonousBastard Aug 2020 #2

Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Mon Aug 31, 2020, 04:51 PM

1. Unfortunately, the rest of the article is behind a firewall.

But I gather that it never occurred to him to do any independent research on what he was editing.

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Response to PoindexterOglethorpe (Reply #1)

Mon Aug 31, 2020, 05:12 PM

2. He actually tried some, but to no avail. He was willing to be programmed...

Perhaps the most pertinent quot from the article;

“Just from a research point of view, it’s fascinating to watch,” Smyser said. “Whereas public health is very disorganized in our approach to the pandemic, anti-vaxxers are extremely organized and are hosting online summits and doing advocacy training.”

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