Mostly Accurate Reporting from CBN News

On June 5th, 2020, Gordon Robertson, son of televangelist Pat Robertson, appeared on his father’s Christian Broadcasting Network warning of fake news and conspiracy theories about RFID chips in COVID-19 vaccines and calling their actual possible use for stock control on pre-filled vaccine syringes, "a good use of wonderful technology," but curiously failed to mention where this dangerous nonsense originated.

The source of Robertson's fake news seems to be a rather innocuous video, or rather videos (for it was posted twice under different titles) featuring Jay Walker, executive chairman (not CEO as stated in the video) of ApiJect Systems, promoting the pre-filled vaccine syringes the Trump administration had contracted under the $138 million public-private partnership titled Project Jumpstart.

The misconstrued statements that lead to these videos going viral come from a 50 second section two thirds of the way through the brief interview in which Walker, in direct response to a question from CBN News medical reporter Lorie Johnson, briefly outlines an optional RFID chip which could be attached for tracking purposes in apparent blissful ignorance of what he has just unleashed.

Published on May 22nd, 2020, under the title RFID Chip May Be Tied to the New Coronavirus Vaccine and tagged chip in vaccine and RFID Chip covid-19 vaccine, which seems somewhat misleading considering how small a part of the interview the chip made up, it generated such comments as, "I WILL DIE OF COVID-19, RATHER TAKING THIS RFID CHIP! (Mark of the Beast)."

The now viral video was seemingly immediately republished under the even more misleading title How Gov Could Use RFID Chips When Millions of Americans Inject COVID-19 Vaccine with a scarier thumbnail and additional tags including 666 and mark. This video now has over 576k views, compared to 46k for its original iteration and 1.7k for Robertson’s warning.

One week later, on May 29th, 2020, CBN News returned to the subject with a video titled Pre-Filled COVID-19 Vaccine Syringes May Have RFID Chip which clarifies the nature of the chip and includes the much needed disclaimer, "it would not be injected or touch the patient." However, no correction or clarification has, at time of writing, been attached to those original videos.

CBN News, according to Media Bias/Fact Check, "mostly reports accurate news that sometimes does not align with science." And, despite Robertson’s belated protestation, this irresponsibly sensationalist and misleading, though not outright false, coverage seems to indicate that, when large numbers of views are at stake, mostly accurate reporting is good enough for this "news" network.


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