Awareness of QAnon jumps in new poll
Awareness of the QAnon conspiracy theory among American adults has doubled since March, according to a new poll released by the Pew Research Center Wednesday.
Forty-seven percent of respondents said they had heard or read about QAnon in the poll conducted between Aug. 31 and Sept. 7, up from 23 percent in a Pew survey from March.
However, 38 percent of respondents said they had only been exposed to the theory “a little.”
Additionally, nearly three-quarters of those who had heard or read about it said QAnon is net bad for the country.
Democrats reported awareness at a higher rate than Republicans, 55 to 39 percent, and overwhelmingly said it is a “very bad” thing for the country.
On the other hand, 41 percent of Republicans who had heard or read about the theory said it is a good thing for the U.S.
Followers of QAnon believe, without evidence, that a secret cabal of Democrats and Hollywood elites are engaged in large scale child trafficking and pedophilia.
They also also believe that President Trump is working with the military to expose and execute that shadowy network.
The community behind the theory has grown massively over the last year.
Multiple candidates who have expressed support for QAnon have won their Republican primaries and the president has publicly praised the theory’s adherents.
The spread of the theory has been aided by the coronavirus pandemic, which has weakened trust in institutions and left many Americans alone with the internet to keep them entertained.
Social media has been key to the growth, and despite efforts from platforms like Facebook and Twitter to crack down on the dangerous community continues to be used to loop in unsuspecting people by boosting campaigns like #SaveTheChildren and co-opting anti-mask groups.
While it’s difficult to know just how many QAnon followers there are in the U.S., reports have suggested the number may be in the hundreds of thousands.