Fact Check

Did Rachel Maddow Tell People Not To Post Real Vaccine Injuries So They Won't Be Used as Propaganda?

The post allegedly claimed that anti-vaccine activists use this information to spread dangerous propaganda about vaccines.

Published Feb. 20, 2024

 (Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)
Image Via Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images
Claim:
On X (formerly Twitter), MSNBC's Rachel Maddow posted "If you truly are vaccine injured, PLEASE consider not blasting your health problems on social media. Antivaxxers are using every example of injury, no matter how small, to spread dangerous propaganda about the vaccine."

In mid-February 2024, a purported screenshot of a Feb. 15 post on X by MSNBC political commentator Rachel Maddow went viral in the subreddit r/conspiracies. The tweet allegedly told people who "truly are vaccine injured" to hide information about their vaccine injury from the public so as not to give fuel to the anti-vaccine movement:

There is no evidence that Maddow ever posted this statement. 

It does not appear on archived versions of Maddow's X profile from Feb. 15, 2024, the day the post was allegedly published. There is no discussion on X that records people interacting with or discussing the purported statement either. 

Finally, the screenshot used in Reddit is attributed to "media.conspiracies.win," suggesting the image was originally found on a Reddit clone that is dedicated to conspiracies and has limited content moderation.

For these reasons, Snopes concludes that the alleged Maddow tweet is a forgery. As such, the claim is False.

Sources

Conspiracies - Conspiracy Theories & Facts. https://conspiracies.win/. Accessed 20 Feb. 2024.

"@Maddow (Archived Feb 15 2024)." Twitter, https://web.archive.org/web/20240215123402/https://twitter.com/maddow.

"NBC Entertainer Rachel Maddow Would Prefer for You to STFU about Your Vaxx Injuries." Reddit, 20 Feb. 2024, https://www.reddit.com/r/conspiracy/comments/1avgotj/nbc_entertainer_rachel_maddow_would_prefer_for/.

Alex Kasprak is an investigative journalist and science writer reporting on scientific misinformation, online fraud, and financial crime.

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