As rumors spread about the COVID-19 coronavirus disease pandemic in early 2020, an unlikely scapegoat emerged. Bill and Melinda Gates, longtime foes of anti-vaccine activists because of the Gates Foundation’s work in public health, became the center of a storm of misinformation and rumors. Snopes dug into the conspiracy theories.
Check out the other categories to read the rest of our COVID-19 fact checks.
What questions do you have? Help Snopes investigate rumors around the novel coronavirus by sending us your tips.
Did Bill Gates Brief the CIA in 2005 About a Mind-Altering Vaccine?
A years-old hoax recirculated in 2020 — this time with Gates' name attached to it.
Is Bill Gates Being Sued by India Over Vaccination Deaths?
A fresh meme resurrected and combined some stale claims that we had already investigated at length.
Does Microsoft Own Patent ‘666’ About Implanting Microchips in People?
The Redmond, Wash.-based computer company published a patent for a "cryptocurrency system using body activity data."
Are Bill Gates and the ID2020 Coalition Using COVID-19 To Build Global Surveillance State?
Conspiracy theorists misrepresent Bill Gates’ funding of vaccination and digital-identity research as evidence of a nefarious global surveillance plan foretold in the Book of Revelation.
Did Bill Gates Tell George Magazine That an ‘Over-Populated Planet’ Would Fall to a ‘Lung-Attacking Virus’?
Bill Gates was featured in a 1997 issue of George magazine, but so were other people.
Is ‘Center for Global Human Population Reduction’ Inscribed on a Gates Foundation Building?
A doctored image was used to promulgate an old conspiracy theory about Bill Gates.
Is This Microsoft Logo/Coronavirus Crop Circle Real?
You don't need a field to create a crop circle hoax.
Did Melinda Gates Wear an Upside-Down Cross?
Critics claimed the billionaire philanthropist purposefully donned the symbol in video interviews about the COVID-19 pandemic.
Is Italy Calling for Bill Gates’ Arrest?
While an Italian politician truly did call for Bill Gates to be arrested, this position has not been endorsed by the Italian government.
Was the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Kicked Out of India?
A false controversy from 2009 continues to fuel misinformation many years later.
Did Melinda Gates Say This About Black People and COVID-19 Vaccination?
A meme alleged she said Black Americans "must be" first in line for a vax, just behind heath care workers.