Moving ‘crisis actor’ in body bag is actually climate change protester

10 February 2022
What was claimed

A video from the news shows a ‘crisis actor’ moving in a body bag.

Our verdict

This is false. The video shows climate policy protesters.

A video on Facebook is being circulated with claims that it shows “crisis actors”. The footage shows a news reporter in front of people appearing to be in body bags, before one of those people moves and uncovers themself, and then a woman runs over. One post has the caption: “Crisis actors you had one job!” Another says: “Crisis actor in Germany forgets he’s filming on TV.”

The term ‘crisis actor’ can refer to trained actors or volunteers who participate in exercises to train emergency services. However, it is also often used by people spreading false information online to describe someone who is paid to feign illness or death, perhaps in front of news cameras, to further an agenda. Recently it’s often been claimed that people are being paid to pretend they have Covid-19. We have checked false claims along these lines before.

However, this video doesn’t show crisis actors. It is actually a clip from an Austrian TV report about climate change protesters in Vienna. If you do a Google search for the words across the bottom of the screen that you can see in full—“WIEN: DEMO GEGEN”—the clip from the news channel's own website is the first result.

The full title is “Wien: Demo gegen Klimapolitik”, which is German for “Vienna: Demo against climate policy”. According to translated subtitles, the news reporter says that the protesters were lying down to represent people in Austria who they say would die as a result of climate change.

Other fact checkers from Poland, France and Spain have also checked the same video.

This article is part of our work fact checking potentially false pictures, videos and stories on Facebook. You can read more about this—and find out how to report Facebook content—here. For the purposes of that scheme, we’ve rated this claim as false because the video shows a protest in Vienna about climate policies, not ‘crisis actors’.

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