Vimeo removes artist’s ‘misleading’ fictitious vaccine cartoon
Vimeo, a leading video-sharing service platform, has censored the first episode of a cartoonist’s fictional series called “UNJABBED” for what they claim to be “dangerous” content related to health, even though the video does not include any overt reference to COVID-19.
Ken Avidor, an artist based in Indianapolis, Indiana, makes films with sketches. He is also the author of “Bicyclopolis”, a comic strip released in 2018. Since he pays a subscription to a service on Vimeo and has posted other work on his profile, it took him off guard when he had his last job withdrawn.
Avidor learned from Vimeo on October 15 that the first episode of “UNJABBED,” a dystopian two-minute article about a man who ran away after his wife died from a vaccine, violated the terms of service of the platform. According to Vimeo, the artist’s video violated three policies. He was told that the platform does not allow content that:
- Communicates false or misleading health-related information that has serious potential to harm the public
- Perpetuates False or Misleading Vaccine Safety Claims
- Claims coronavirus is hoax or promotes various other virus conspiracy theories
“We do not allow health-related content that could cause people to take unsafe or unproven treatments or refrain from taking any precautions or treatments indicated that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of US or World Health Organization (WHO recommend), “Vimeo customer Service worker Riley O. wrote to the artist:” We also do not allow claims that an epidemic or pandemic (such as COVID-19) are conspiracies. “
Here is the statement of @ Vimeo . They claim that my FICTIONAL short “UNJABBED” which takes place in the FUTURE using animated ART is somehow a danger to the audience. I believe that crosses a line, censorship of FICTION. My friends, we are now in deep and deep totalitarian territory. pic.twitter.com/E4T51T9HeE
– Ken Avidor (@Avidor) October 15, 2021
Avidor’s film makes no textual allusion to COVID-19. Rather, it is a representation of a nameless vaccine and a nameless disease.
Speaking to The Federalist, Avidor said he was surprised the fiction was being censored, citing other examples that illustrate the contradiction of Vimeo’s decision.
âI don’t think my SciFi [Science fiction] films should be censored because of another person’s performance, âAvidor said. âDozens of SciFi films could be deleted, for example, genetic research can be beneficial. So what about a work of fiction that imagines scientists using recombinant DNA to recreate dinosaursâ¦ you know, âJurassic Park? Organ transplants are a good thing, so goodbye “Frankenstein”. A very slippery slope.
While Vimeo has taken steps to censor content, it is still on YouTube as of this writing. Likewise, the Avidor episode is on Rumble. Avidor, who told The Federalist he was neither a Democrat nor a Republican, but a “political orphan,” said he worried about future filmmakers if Vimeo’s policies persisted.
Yet, this is part of a larger trend. Social media companies and other groups censor perceived âdisinformationâ. Facebook announced last week that it would “enforce” further campaigns to block “disinformation” regarding the COVID-19 vaccine and children. Twitter’s disinformation initiative has evolved into a test feature for users to report and report “misleading” content.
âEverything can be called a ‘health problem,’ Avidor also said.â Last month, the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] called gun violence a health problem. Combine that with the line crossed with fiction and it’s goodbye “John Wick, Breaking Bad” etc.
âI know a guy who literally killed thousands of people in the most sadistic way in a video game called ‘Grand Theft Auto’, but in real life he’s far from a serial killer. Fiction is fantasy and reality is something else. It seems that the pendulum is swinging in this country when it comes to art and entertainment, âhe continued.
Vimeo did not respond to a request for comment regarding its censorship of the show.