Microsoft's Bill Gates has been a strong advocate for pandemic preparedness for a few years and has famously given a TED talk back in 2015 that has previously warned of the potentially staggering death toll that a worldwide pandemic could possibly create. As the growing pandemic has been spreading all around the world, Bill Gates has already pledged $250 million towards fighting the disease and creating a vaccine.
These two factors have been the foundation of a new set of interesting conspiracy theories that all point towards Bill Gates as being the very origin of the coronavirus. All of these conspiracy theories have now gone from fringe online conspiracy theorists all the way to the mouths of certain conservative pundits.
The creation of this conspiracy
Back in the 2015 TED talk by Microsoft's Bill Gates, he examined the ebola outbreak that previously killed thousands of people in Sierra Leone, Liberia, and also Guinea. He has then highlighted the certain factors that have kept the disease from spreading further worldwide and has warned against the growing potential for much more contagious pandemics worldwide.
The conspiracy theories that are aimed to connect Gates to the pandemic started sometime late January, according to a previous New York Times investigation, with a certain "YouTube personality linked to QAnon" who apparently claimed that Gates already had knowledge of this pandemic.
A few days later, a certain website called Infowars then published an article that incorrectly blamed the Gates Foundation of co-hosting the pandemic exercise that happened in late 2019 that actually simulated the global coronavirus pandemic.
Factcheck.org has followed up on this conspiracy by saying that although there was an exercise that was called Event 201 that took place last October and was hosted by the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security that was focused on emergency preparedness if ever an event of a "very severe pandemic" did occur. The event did not deal with 2019-nCoV or COVID-19 and in no way did it make any real-life predictions regarding death tolls.
This specific distinction was still ignored by conspiracy theorists.
The conspiracy of Bill Gates
The piece then continues to say that the inevitable mass vaccine campaign that could possibly end the COVID-19 would also be a perfect opportunity to introduce a new worldwide digital ID which could then store a wealth of information about a certain individual (including their vaccination history) and could also be a certain requirement for a few services.
These baseless claims that Microsoft's Bill Gates, joined with other powerful and wealthy people, are using the present pandemic as a means of installing a certain worldwide caste system that would all be based on a digital ID.
The reaction received on social media by those who believed this conspiracy theory with a specific statement even saying "I will not take a #BillGatesVaccine," in response to the bizarre conspiracies that surround Bill Gates.