Denigrating Pfizer’s Vaccine for Money: The ‘Phantom Offer’ to French Influencers

The matter has reached such an impact that even the French Minister of Health has spoken: “I don’t know where it comes from, whether from France or from abroad.”

France’s newspapers and social media were red hot on Tuesday. All kinds of theories and speculations circulated about the mysterious offer that influencers and famous youtubers had received to publicly denigrate the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine against Covid-19 in exchange for money, a plot that the neighboring country’s health minister described as “dangerous and irresponsible.”

Those to whom this strange campaign was directed are very active and recognized people in the areas of Health and Science and they said that they had received an email from an alleged communication agency that would be based in the United Kingdom and that offered them to “collaborate” on behalf of a client “on a gigantic budget” but who wanted to remain anonymous and keep the deal a secret.

“How strange. I have received a collaboration proposal that consists of giving birth to the Pfizer vaccine in a video”, tweeted Leo Grasset, whose channel Youtube dedicated to Science has 1.2 million subscribers. “He has an extraordinary budget, the client is kept secret, and I have to hide the sponsorship,” he says.

C’est étrange.
Here is a proposal for a partnership which consists of discussing the Pfizer video vaccination. Budget colossal, client who veut rester incognito et il faut cacher la sponso.
Ethique / 20. If you voyez des vidéos là dessus vous saurez that c’est une opé, du coup.

– Léo Grasset (@dirtybiology) May 24, 2021

And he adds: “It is incredible. The address of the London agency that contacted me is false. They have never been there, the address is of a laser surgery clinic. All the staff have very rare LinkedIn profiles.”

The profiles he located have already disappeared from the Internet, but before that happened Grasset realized that “all of them have worked in Russia”.

It is not clear how many people have received such proposals, where they originated or why they are targeting Pfizer’s vaccine, which is the most widely used in France, a country traditionally skeptical of vaccines.

The US pharmaceutical company that produces the antidote declined to comment to the agency. Reuters.

Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech became the first drug producers to deliver successful vaccine results in November 2020 after a large clinical trial of the coronavirus vaccine.

In April, a report from the European Union warned that Russian and Chinese media systematically sought to sow mistrust in Covid-19 vaccines manufactured by Western countries to strengthen their disinformation campaigns against the West.

The person behind the Twitter account “Et ca se dit medecin” (“And they call themselves doctors”), a resident doctor who has about 30,000 followers on Twitter and 90,000 on Instagram, told the chain RMC TV that he had been offered money to discredit the Pfizer vaccine.

‘Phantom offer’

“I do not know where it comes from, if from France or abroad,” he said. Olivier Veran, French Minister of Health, to the television channel BFM TV. “It is pathetic, it is dangerous, it is irresponsible and it is not working for them,” he said.

The French people are overwhelmingly in favor of vaccines “and I don’t think any attempt to turn that around is going to be successful,” he said, adding that he had “no idea” whether or not these offers came from Russia.

The offer even reached Sami Ouladitto, a comedian with over 400,000 subscribers on Youtube.

This morning there is a demand for a partnership that was most seriously shocked, je suis obligaé de vous en faire part. 1 / 4🔽

– Sami Ouladitto (@SamiOuladitto) May 20, 2021

According to the French press, it is difficult to trace the authors of the emails, who claim to have their headquarters in London and who act on behalf of the Fazze agency. The newspaper Le Monde reported that Fazze had never been registered in the UK, but could be headquartered in the Virgin Islands.

Where do these offers come from? That is a mystery yet to be solved.