“King Charles III is a reptilian”: how TikTok was invaded by an old conspiracy theory

“King Charles III is a reptilian”: how TikTok was invaded by an old conspiracy theory

The reptilian conspiracy is one of the oldest in the history of the web. It all started in 2001, when David Icke published “The most hidden secret”

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Il video it is very handcrafted. It is grainy, it switches between different formats and a screen is framed. Even the caption is simple “The new king of England does not contradict himself”. Behind these words are the images of Charles Windsor, now King Charles III, who lingers in a royal reception. The video stops on the eyes where a perfectly vertical pupil can be seen among the few pixels available in the frame. The hashtag used in the video description clears all doubts: #reptilian, reptilian.

The video has 226.oo0 views and is posted by the @non_ti_scordare_di_me account followed by about 16,000 users. Low numbers for the platform but opening the linked hashtags you can find hundreds of videos that relaunch one of the most famous conspiracy theories in recent history. 130 million views for #reptilians418 million views for #reptilianup to 862 million for the Spanish variant #reptilians. Sure, these hashtags sometimes refer to zoology videos but all the main findings relate to the reptilian theory.

TIKTOK | The first results of searches with the hashtag #reptilianos

TIKTOK | The first results of searches with the hashtag #reptilianos

The plot of the reptilians

The history of the plot of the reptilians starts from science fiction stories, crosses the paranoid mind of some ufologist fed up with living on Earth and then infiltrates any social media, platform or communication system used to spread content on the internet. The first snake men appeared in the history of literature are those of Robert E. Howard in his short story “The Phantom Kingdom” of 1929. Here we talked about men with the head of a snake who were able to transform their shape to blend with humans.

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70 years after the publication of “The Phantom Kingdom”, the protagonists of this fantasy story take the stage of the conspiracy. October 1, 1998 David not publishes “The Hidden Secret”, the volume can still be found on Amazon. The theory proposed by Icke encompasses the entire history of humanity. According to the writer, the Earth was invaded by an alien race from the system Alpha Dragon. These aliens would have the appearance of reptiles but even in this case they would be able to change their shape to make themselves similar to humans.

Not only. In Icke’s book we learn that the reptilians have guided the entire history of humanity, so much so that they even created their permanent spherical base near the Earth. A structure that was then vulgarly defined by man as the Moon. Among the members of this alien race there would be some of the most important dynasties of our time, obviously starting with the Windsors.

DAVID ICKE | The cover of the book that launched the reptilian theory

DAVID ICKE | The cover of the book that launched the reptilian theory

TikTok’s relationship with fake news

Carl III descendant of Alpha Draconis may also seem like a ridiculous but harmless variation in the continuous flow of TikTok videos. Yet it’s just the latest sign of a more complex problem the platform is grappling with. Among the millions of views hidden in the hashtags on the theme of reptilians are channels specialized in the publication of video of the conspiracy e fake news. @laikacl is a profile with 1.6 million followers with 22 million likes that publishes clips that allude to conspiracy theories, from the fake predictions of the Simpsons (now a genre) to the footage of aliens hiding among us.

The problem of TikTok with fake news has been the subject of an extensive report by Newsguard, a platform that evaluates the credibility of newspapers and tracks the movements of fake news. The paper is titled Beware the ‘New Google:’ TikTok’s Search Engine Pumps Toxic Misinformation To Its Young Users. Newsguard’s thesis is that given its spread, TikTok is becoming a platform on which more and more users are looking for current news. A problem given that in an analysis of the videos dedicated to Covid about 20% of the results corresponded to false news: specifically 105 of the 540 videos analyzed.

TikTok is hard at work for eliminate disinformation videos but the flow of published material is enormous and the key words to be screened keep changing. Another example concerns the termination of pregnancy. In the United States, following the decision of the Supreme Court on 25 June, the research on abortion they have multiplied. Several videos began to appear on TikTok explaining how to induce abortion with unscientific methods, such as infusions ofartemisia. Now the search with the keywords “abortion” and “mugwort” does not offer any results but it is enough to broaden the search with the key “mugwort induces abortion” to find as a result a video in which they are recommended infinsi of various plants: none , clearly, with real effectiveness.

NEWSGUARD | Videos spreading fake news about mugwort and abortion

NEWSGUARD | Videos spreading fake news about mugwort and abortion

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