Conspiracy theories, misinformation, and fake news are rampant in the world right now. And also, birds aren’t real.
Peter McIndoe created the conspiracy theory/social movement Birds Aren’t Real in 2017, when he realized birds are not, in fact, real. What we think of as “birds” are actually drones the U.S. government is using to spy on citizens.
That was the story for four years, with billboards popping up and protests outside Twitter HQ to fight their bird logo. Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube are full of Birds Aren’t Real accounts and content as Gen Z spreads the conspiracy theory widely.
McIndoe is now moving to the next stage of the Birds Aren’t Real movement. The stage where he comes clean. McIndoe knows that birds are very real. He’s using an absurd idea to highlight our absurd world.
The parody social movement is an interesting tool, both to increase awareness (that Uncle Ted’s theory about COVID-19 population control might be just as absurd) and to decrease tensions in the political powder keg that is the U.S. right now.
“Everything we’ve done with Birds Aren’t Real is made to make sure it doesn’t tip into where it could have a negative end result on the world.” McIndoe told Yahoo News. “It’s a safe space for people to come together and process the conspiracy takeover of America. It’s a way to laugh at the madness rather than be overcome by it.”
OK. But fish? They actually aren’t real.