Crackpot conspiracy theorists claim metal strips in face masks are 5G antennas – but it’s totally bonkers
A BONKERS new conspiracy theory falsely claims that face masks used to stop the spread of coronavirus are killing those who wear them.
The dangerous theory, spread on social media in recent weeks, makes the baseless suggestion that metal wires in face masks are tiny 5G antennas.
These metal wires are in fact not 5G antennas, and are designed to help the protective masks fir over your nose and face.
There is no evidence to suggest that 5G radiation can harm people’s health.
The conspiracy theory appears to have originated from a video shared widely on WhatsApp, Facebook and other social media platforms.
In it, an unnamed man shows the metal strip that is inside the top part of a medical mask and falsely claims it is a 5G antenna.
Real 5G antennas look a bit more like this[/caption]
“Yes, indeed. The antenna killer 5G antenna killer that’s inside the masks that they are telling everybody to wear,” a voice narrates.
“They tell you to put it on so that you can breathe right above your nostrils so you can inhale and it can go straight to your brain and begin to destroy.”
The man then advises watchers to make their own masks instead.
The metal strip in face masks serves quite a different purpose.
Can 5G radiation cause harm?
Here’s what you need to know…
Online conspiracy theorists are claiming that 5G can cause harm.
Early theories suggested 5G could lead to cancer – and now crackpots have linked it to coronavirus too.
But it’s simply impossible for 5G to cause any of these problems.
Radiation damages cells by breaking them apart, but 5G microwaves simply lack the power to do this.
5G is a low-frequency radiation, far below infrared and visible light.
In fact, it’s essential that 5G is low-frequency, because higher frequencies are less useful at delivering mobile signals over large areas.
We know that this level of radiation is safe, because otherwise the visible light from our televisions would have killed us a long time ago.
Even very powerful low-frequency radiation won’t hurt you. For instance, microwaves can be used in ovens to provide a heating effect – but phone signals are far less powerful than that.
In a Bloomberg video in January, Seto Wing Hong of the World Health Organisation explained that the metal strip is to help a mask fit to your face.
Pointing to the top of the mask, he said: “Now you see this here? This tight, little, thick band here? It’s to show you that you should put it on the top.
“Why? Because once you wear it, then you squeeze it so that it pinches the nose, and then you pull it down.”
In a separate video explaining how to wear a mask correctly, Dr April Baller of the WHO says: “Verify which side is the top: this is usually where the metal strip is”.
Face masks do not contain 5G antennas[/caption]
Baller instructs users how to put on the mask and then adds, “Pinch the metal strip so that it moulds to the shape of your nose”.
The false idea that 5G can harm or kill people has gained traction on social media in recent months.
Boxer Amir Khan also released a series of bizarre videos where he blames the coronavirus on the building of “5G towers”.
Crackpot arsonists have torched dozens of 5G phone masts in the UK in response to online conspiracy theories.
However, scientists have repeatedly debunked theories that 5G can harm people’s health.
International experts ruled in March that radiation from 5G phones cannot cause harm under current guidelines.
Radiation watchdog ICNIRP revealed its findings after studying seven years of scientific evidence.
Most read in Science
In other news, Apple’s rumoured iPhone 12 could be the first model with 5G.
Tesco Mobile is now offering 5G in 24 UK towns and cities.
And Three is giving customers a free 5G upgrade in 66 towns and cities.
Have you upgraded to 5G yet? Let us know in the comments!
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