Old 2018 Photos Shared as Protests Related to COVID-19 in France

The photograph shows a 2018 protest in France about fuel tax hikes.

3 min read

An old photograph showing a protest near Arc de Triomphe in Paris has been shared on the internet with a false claim that it shows a recent protest against COVID-19 lockdown in France.

However, the photograph, which dates back to November 2018, were of the "Yellow Vests Protests" which were about the fuel tax hikes.



The photo has been shared with a caption that read, "France rejects lockdown tyranny."

Another social media user said, “Following Macron’s announcements last night, French citizens reacted strongly and the hashtag 'Gilets Jaunes' (Yellow Vests) has been trending for several hours. Many people all over France are already calling for anti-lockdown/anti-government demonstrations today 14 July, Bastille Day, to oppose Macron.”

The photograph shows a 2018 protest in France about fuel tax hikes.

An archive of the post can be found here.

(Photo: Screenshot/Facebook)

The photo was shared widely on both Twitter and Facebook, archives of which can be found archived here, here, and here.


When we conducted a reverse image search, we found that the same photo had been used in a news article published in 2018.

The picture was credited to a photographer called Olivier Coret and was carried in a story talking about the 'yellow vest' protests in France.

The yellow vest protests that started in November were initially about the planned hikes in fuel prices but gradually shifted against growing inequality and high cost of living in France.

When we searched for the photograph with the name of the photographer, we found that photo on Divergence Images.

The photograph shows a 2018 protest in France about fuel tax hikes.

(Photo: Screenshot/Divergence Images)

The caption of the photo said, "Demonstration of the Yellow Vests on the Champs-Elysees, Paris on November 24, 2018".

We made a side-by-side comparison of the two and found several similarities.

The photograph shows a 2018 protest in France about fuel tax hikes.

It has to be noted that there have been recent protests in France following President Macron's latest measures to increase vaccinations and to curb COVID-19 infections.

According to a report in the Associated Press, "They (the protestors) denounced the government’s decision on Monday to make vaccines compulsory for all healthcare workers, and to require a 'health pass' proving people are fully vaccinated, have recently tested negative or recovered from the virus in order to access restaurants and other public venues."

Evidently, an old image from 2018 was shared with a false claim that it shows the recent COVID-19 related protests in France.


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