The representative body of the UK mobile phone industry, Mobile UK, is launching a public information campaign ‘#5GCheckTheFacts’, on Thursday 4 February to inform, educate and busts the myths surrounding the next generation mobile network, 5G.
In recent years, public opinion has been swayed by inaccurate non-factual reports and conspiracy theories that state mobile phones, and particularly 5G present a health risk. This is despite decades of extensive research assessing potential adverse health effects and to date, no links have been established.
To accurately address these misunderstandings, the campaign commissioned by Mobile UK has been built on nationwide research into the British public’s views on 5G and health, the extent of these concerns and the barriers to understanding.
The findings showed that overall, despite the rise of non-factual reports and conspiracy theories stating that 5G poses a danger to health, only a very small minority were firmly against 5G (3%). Only 7% believed the unsubstantiated claims that 5G causes cancer or think it could be bad for their health (16%).
Overwhelmingly 81% of respondents condemned the recent, wild conspiracy theories that state 5G causes coronavirus and just over 10% thought mobile masts and associated equipment could be damaging to health.
The results highlight a strong need for the provision of clear information about 5G, with 46% of respondents stating they are unclear whether 5G does or does not pose a health risk, and nearly half of those questioned were uncertain of the benefits of this new technology.
Mobile UK are therefore launching this campaign to provide explanations and reassurance, as well as highlighting the benefits and opportunities 5G will bring.
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The results of the survey of 2000 adults across the UK, conducted in October 2020, has informed the basis of the 5G information campaign, #5GCheckTheFacts. In addition, a series of public focus groups and in-depth interviews were carried out to further understanding. Fact-based messages will be seen across social media, information toolkits will be circulated to local authorities, and Mobile UK’s website mobileuk.org will act as a portal of information from a wide range of sources where people can go to get further information.
The campaign aims to both educate and reassure members of the public about the network rollout and address any health concerns associated with 5G.
Commenting on the initiative, Hamish MacLeod, director of Mobile UK said: “While it is clear that only a small minority of people are against 5G these results highlight a desire for more information and clarification, both with regard to the health and safety of 5G, but also on how the technology can and will truly transform society.
“Our #5GCheckTheFacts campaign is designed to provide this information and answers to people’s most common questions. We truly believe that 5G is a benefit offering significant positive changes to us all as well as providing connectivity that will make our lives easier and, in some cases, save lives.”