Pete Evans has been banned from Facebook for repeatedly posting COVID-19 misinformation and conspiracy theories

Supplied
  • Facebook has removed the Facebook Page of one of Australia’s foremost theorists Pete Evans for sharing COVID-19 misinformation.
  • Evans has repeatedly posted health misinformation and conspiracy theories, leading many companies to sever ties with the former celebrity chef.
  • Evans’ Instagram account remains active, and he also has smaller presences on fringe platforms like Parler and Telegram.
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

After months of pressure, Facebook has removed the Facebook Page of former celebrity chef Pete Evans for sharing COVID-19 misinformation.

On Wednesday night, a Facebook company spokesperson told Business Insider that the tech giant has removed the Chef Pete Evans Facebook page.

“We don’t allow anyone to share misinformation about COVID-19 that could lead to imminent physical harm or COVID-19 vaccines that have been debunked by public health experts. We have clear policies against this type of content and we’ve removed Chef Pete Evans’ Facebook Page for repeated violations of these policies,” they said in a statement.

Prior to deletion, the Facebook Page had close to one and a half million Facebook followers.

Evans’ Instagram profile — another Facebook-owned social network which Evans generally cross-posted the similar content too — remains unaffected at the time of publication.

While no stranger to misinformation and unproven health claims, Evans’ social media posts notably lurched towards more extreme and fringe conspiracy theories in 2020.

Evans repeatedly posted COVID-19 denialist, anti-vaccine and anti-mask content throughout the pandemic. He even espoused a belief for the QAnon conspiracy theory.

After his company was fined for promoting a device with claims it could be used as a coronavirus cure and losing his high profile job as a host of My Kitchen Rules, Evans increasingly used social media platforms to share conspiracy theories with his enormous audiences.

In November, many companies finally ended their commercial relationships with Evans after he posted a cartoon on social media that featured a neo-Nazi symbol.

After first saying he knew what the symbol meant, Evans walked back his statement and claimed he was unaware of its meaning.

Soon after, Australia’s most prominent conspiracy theorist used Facebook to claim he was leaving the platform in favour of other niche, largely unmoderated web services.

Following that, Evans posted more than 200 times on Facebook in December, sharing content like baseless claims of pedophilia against CNN anchor Anderson Cooper and urging Sydney-siders not to get tested amid the latest COVID-19 outbreak.

Content from the page was repeatedly removed or labelled as untrue by Facebook’s third party fact-checking partners, but the Facebook Page and Instagram account were never suspended, allowing Evans to continue to share COVID-19 misinformation until now.

Losing this Facebook Page will limit Evans’ ability to spread misinformation further.

Evans has not commented publicly about Facebook’s decisions to remove him.

On the encrypted chat service Telegram, Evans has just 13,440 subscribers.

On the right wing social media network Parler, each of Evans most recent posts have been seen than fewer than 5,000 people.

Instagram remains his largest platform. After Evans was banned from Facebook, he shared a post to his 278,000 followers on his Instagram Story.

‘The highest form of wealth is the ability to wake up every morning and say, “I can do whatever I want today,” it read.

Instagram has been contacted

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.