A Russian disinformation campaign designed to undermine and spread fear over the University of Oxford’s coronavirus vaccine has been exposed by a Time investigation.
Pictures, memes and video clips depicting the British-made vaccine as dangerous have been imagined in Russia, and middlemen are now looking to “sow” the images on social media around the world.
The crude theme of the distorted images is that the vaccine, millions of doses of which will be manufactured by pharmaceutical giant Astrazeneca, could turn people into apes because it uses a chimpanzee virus as a vector. The campaign targets countries where Russia wants to sell its own Sputnik V vaccine, as well as Western countries.
It has the potential to damage not only the