Twitter puts "misleading" warning on Baudet tweet
Twitter put a warning on a tweet posted by far-right FvD leader Thierry Baudet on Sunday. According to the social media platform, Baudet's statement that the risks of the coronavirus are "negligible" to him, and that coronavirus vaccines' side effects are severe, is misleading.
Baudet tweeted: "To be clear: I will ABSOLUTELY NOT be 'vaccinated' against corona. The risk of that virus is completely negligible to me (151 people <70 died from it in 2020. The side effects are severe. And the long-term effect on immune system is completely unknown."
According to side effects center Lareb, the vast majority of side effects reported after a coronavirus vaccine are mild, including things like muscle pain, headache, and fatigue. And according to data from public health institute RIVM, up to 2 March 2021 at least 1,439 people under the age of 70 died of the coronavirus in the Netherlands.
Twitter labeled this tweet as misleading, with a link to why health officials consider Covid-19 vaccines safe for most people. The label means that the tweet cannot be liked, retweeted, or responded to.
Baudet's party FvD responded furiously to the warning, accusing Twitter of censorship. "American Big Tech company censors Dutch party leader a week before the election. If that is not foreign interference in Dutch democracy, then what is?" the party tweeted.
Baudet's tweet was not removed by Twitter. Last year the platform said it would only add a warning label because tweets from politicians are of public interest. As far as is known, this is the first time that Twitter placed a warning on a Dutch politician's tweet.
Voor de duidelijkheid: ik ga me ABSOLUUT NIET laten “vaccineren” tegen corona. Het risico van dat virus is voor mij volstrekt verwaarloosbaar (in 2020 stierven 151 mensen <70 eraan). De bijwerkingen zijn heftig. En lange termijn-effect op immuunsysteem is volstrekt onbekend.— Thierry Baudet (@thierrybaudet) March 7, 2021