Theories

Conspiracy theories around COVID-19 continue to spread. Experts weigh in on why people believe them.

More than 200 people gathered at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus to protest the face mask mandate that multiple counties are under in the state. (Photo: Megan Jelinger/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
More than 200 people gathered at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus to protest the face mask mandate that multiple counties are under in the state. (Photo: Megan Jelinger/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

When Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert, a Republican who has publicly shunned face masks, tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, the news sparked a chain reaction. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced new rules that required lawmakers to wear masks on the House floor, and several members of the House revealed that they were planning to go into quarantine.

Soon after, Gohmert released a video on Twitter, revealing that he is asymptomatic. He then shared a conspiracy theory about wearing masks that, apparently, he also believes. Gohmert said he “can’t help but wonder” if he contracted COVID-19 from adjusting his mask with his hands. “It is interesting, and I don’t know about everybody, but when I have a mask

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On TikTok, #FreeBritney conspiracy theories run deep

On TikTok, #FreeBritney conspiracy theories run deep
On TikTok, #FreeBritney conspiracy theories run deep

An online campaign is calling for the end of Britney Spears’ conservatorship so the pop star can gain financial and personal independence. Some believe she’s sending SOS messages to supporters in coded social media posts.

The tag #FreeBritney has roughly 140 million views on TikTok, and 104,000 posts on Instagram. Supporters demand that Spears, who hasn’t made major financial or career decisions since a mental health crisis in 2008, be freed from her father’s legal guardianship.

What is conservatorship?

In many states, including where Spears resides in California, a judge will appoint a conservator for an adult who can’t make their own life decisions, like the elderly or mentally impaired. A New York Times investigation into Spears’ conservatorship reported that Spears “cannot make key decisions, personal or financial, without the approval of her conservators: her father, Jamie Spears, and a lawyer, Andrew M.

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NASA Elegantly Shuts Down Those New Zodiac Star Theories

A new story about an old misunderstanding is once again circulating—and NASA is once again setting the record straight.

It all started with a resurfaced story NASA “discovered” a 13th zodiac sign—Ophiuchus, or the serpent-bearer. Anyone born between November 29 and December 17 would no longer be a Scorpio or a Sagittarius, but an Ophiuchus. Scorpio’s window would be cut to just seven days and the entire astrology chart would shift, meaning some Pisces and Leos and Libras would have different star signs. As astrology lovers online started to panic, NASA gently waded into the online fray to set the record straight.

“We see your comments about a zodiac story that re-emerges every few years,” the space agency wrote in a tweet. “No, we did not change the zodiac.” It includes a link to a Tumblr post that explains what actually happened.

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