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Would You Take off Your Mask For $100,000?

Would You Take off Your Mask For $100,000?

By Steve Kirsch

My tweet on this topic went viral with 32M views in 6 days. It was covered by the UK Daily Mail, NY Post, Inside Edition, etc. It was even covered in an article in Croatia! Here’s the backstory.

Executive summary

This is a record for me: 32M views of the tweet shown below in just 6 days:

The backstory is I was simply inquiring if, after hearing compelling evidence that masks don’t work (including the Cochrane review showing they don’t work, the fact that you can be infected with one breath, the fact that you remove the mask to eat or drink, and the fact that you can get COVID easily via your eyes which aren’t covered), if people could be incentivized to remove their masks.

All the conversations were cordial. I even shared the tweet with her. The question was simply to assess how strongly people believed the false narrative that masks protect them. That’s it.

I was simply asking a hypothetical question: “If you were offered $x, would you do y for a few hours?”

If they accepted the offer, I simply would have noted the price.

I was not trying to compel them to do anything they didn’t want to do.

Now the bigger question is: “Are we no longer able to ask people hypothetical questions in America without being labeled a creep?”

The stories

Note: Only Inside Edition contacted me before they wrote their story.

None of the other news organizations reached out to me to get my side of the story before they wrote their story. Andrew Court from the NY Post called, I called him right back, but he never returned my call before writing his story.

Inside Edition: Tech Mogul Offered Woman $100k to Take Off Mask. They were the ONLY news organization to speak to me before running their story. Ironically, Jim and I went to high school together and every now and then we run into each other!

Gutfeld on March 16: Hero or Jerk?

Here are some of the responses on Twitter:

Do you see a common pattern in those articles?

Is what I did unethical?Wow. The NY Post article implies because the passenger sitting next to me was female that my offer was creepy. Wow. Seriously?!

Consider the following:

What actually happened

I was finishing up a phone call where I talked about the COVID vaccine before they closed the door for the early morning flight from SFO to Detroit.

The woman sitting next to me said she overheard my conversation and asked if I was in the pharmaceutical industry. I said I was a journalist and described what I did.

She mentioned she was in pharma and provided the name of the company she worked for.

I asked her about her mask and said I wasn’t aware of any studies showing they worked. Did I miss something? Was she aware of a compelling study showing masks worked?

And so on. It was a cordial conversation. I never asked her for permission to record the conversation. She voluntarily told me the name of the pharmaceutical company she worked for (which I didn’t reveal since she requested I not do that) and we talked about one of the drugs they used to make.

I told her about my earlier tweet and said that a lot of people are trying to sit next to me on planes now.

I asked her if in light of all the evidence she would consider removing her mask now that she knows it is ineffective? What about if I offered you a $100 incentive? etc.

After she turned down my offer, I wrote it up as a second tweet and showed her my tweet (the one above) and said it had gone viral (200K views after an hour).

No complaints were filed with Delta or the flight attendant.

Quite the opposite: she seemed most amused by all the attention she was getting on Twitter! She couldn’t believe it went viral.

For more information

  1. I offered people $10,000 to take off their face masks for 60 minutes. Here’s what happened. This was the original offer. In the Twitter comments, people suggested I went about it wrong, that I should first offer $100 since that seems more believable. So that’s what I did this time around.
  2. Masks fail their biggest test in Bangladesh which has links to a huge number of articles on masks including debunking the various studies on masks (including the famous Bangladesh study that fools most people), how you can get infected via your unprotected eyes (making masks completely useless), and how wearing a mask creates unsafe levels of CO2.


I was somewhat surprised in this case. The person I asked works at a drug company and she listened as I explained the evidence. She could have checked out everything I said (we both had an internet connection) but wasn’t interested in doing that, even for $100,000.

This was meant to prove just how firmly entrenched some people believe the narrative and to assess how hard it will be to change people’s minds.

Even with all the scientific references, the common sense explanations (e.g., your eyes aren’t protected, you take it off to eat, one breath and you’re infected when you eat), and a huge monetary incentive, the combination is NOT sufficient to get some people to even question their beliefs might be wrong. That was the point of this experiment.

It opens the question: what will it take? If the CDC admits that masks are worthless, would that have made a difference to her thinking? Will people who wear masks ever be convinced that all the science says they are worthless?

The point of my tweet is to bring attention to some important issues:

  1. What this showed is that some people very strongly believe that masks offer protection from getting COVID. Short of the CDC admitting that masks are completely ineffective, what will it take to get people to recognize that the CDC has been lying to them?
  2. Will we ever be allowed to have an open debate on the topic between experts such as Stephen Petty, Tyson Gabriel, and Meghan Mansell vs. the health authorities who are recommending masks for COVID?

Original source:

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