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No, Greta Thunberg not highest paid activist – magazine cover fake

A meme circulating on Facebook claims 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg is the world’s highest paid activist.

It says People With Money magazine “reports on September 23, that Thunberg is the highest-paid activist in the world, pulling in an astonishing $46 million" from August 2018 to August 2019. This, it adds, is "a nearly $20 million lead over her closest competition”.

Thunberg is shown on the cover of the magazine.

Fake cover from satirical website

But there is no known magazine called People With Money, and the cover in the meme is a fake.

A TinEye reverse image search of the cover found a number of articles about “highest paid” people on the website MediaMass. The covers are all identical, except for the people shown.

MediaMass describes itself as a satire news website. It has published a number of articles in which the People With Money cover template is placed over a photo of a celebrity. 

Thunberg is the latest to feature, following articles about John Legend, Chuck Norris, Bob Dylan, and Susan Boyle, to name a few.  

The meme is an example of satire being reused as misinformation.

There is no evidence of any credible publication reporting that Thunberg is the world’s “highest paid activist”.

A spokesperson for Thunberg told AFP Fact Check that the meme is incorrect. “Greta never receives payment for her activism. She does not accept fees for any appearances or media engagements. Furthermore, all of the income her family receives from their two books is donated to charity,” the spokesperson said. – Africa Check


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