Fact Check: Did Qatar buy ‘fans’? , sports | dw

Fact Check: Did Qatar buy 'fans'?  ,  sports |  dw

Shortly before the start of the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar, the host is facing a lot of criticism. Allegation: Qatar is buying atmosphere and fan culture by paying football fans for good looks and positive social media posts. What about the allegations?

Claim: “Qatar bought the World Cup fans!”, was the headline in the German “Bild” newspaper, reporting on international fans who were invited by Qatar with a “free trip to the Football World Cup”. Other international media also reported similar. previously the Dutch broadcaster had open school It is being said in the reports that the fans are getting flights and hotels in exchange for social media reach.

DW Fact Check: Correct.

Qatar invites selected international football fans to the World Cup and pays for their flights, hotels and accommodation. The Supreme Committee (SC), responsible for organizing the World Cup, confirmed this when asked by DW. so called “Fan Leader Network”The program is aimed at “passionate football fans” who “want to share important information about the World Cup with their friends”. According to the information from the forum theleader.com It should be up to 1600 fans worldwide. The Supreme Court denied allegations that fans were being paid in return for “coordinated promotion for the World Cup”. “This allegation is absolutely false,” it said in a statement.

But the fact remains: this is exactly what the Supreme Committee of Qatar expects from fans in advertising contracts. This “code of conduct” of DW is the first free He was from NOS. It says: Fans have contracted to “support” the World Cup in Qatar by liking and sharing social media posts using the hashtag #IAMAFAN and tagging the Roadto2022 channel.

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Qatar also told participating fans that their posts would be “monitored”. Qatar may ask fans to remove posts that violate the code of conduct. and “an insult to the World Cup or Qatar” is “categorically inappropriate”.

Ad for the World Cup: A “code of conduct” for fans from around the world

These demands of fans are directly related to monetary benefits, such as free flights, hotel accommodation and match tickets as well as payment of pocket money, as they are contractually fixed. So they can certainly be seen as ideas for World Cup promotion on social networks. And the organizers of the World Cup write in their own way Website: “The Fan Leader Network plays a key role in promoting the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.”

The fans who attended confirmed the offer from Qatar to DW. “The offer included plane tickets, hotels and tickets to the opening game,” says Joseph Delage, a fan from France. “But you had to stay for the entire first lap. The idea was also that you take part in cultural and sporting activities.” Lee Cormish of Canada accepted the offer and traveled to Qatar. According to his own statement, he did not receive a code of conduct from Qatar, but confirmed to DW that in addition to flights, a hotel and a free ticket to the opening game, he would receive a “daily food allowance”. In his video blog he reports on his apparently consistently positive experiences in Qatar. Delage, however, turned down the offer and believes that the aim of the program is to buy Qatar fans with a positive attitude towards the host nation.

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Claim: Videos of “fan marches” have also been circulating in Doha since mid-November. Supporters from many of the participating nations can be seen. However, many social media users doubt their authenticity. “Qatar buys fake fans because nobody wants to go there”, writing one user and another Resource, “Well, they bought ‘fans’.”

DW Fact Check: empty.

We found no evidence that the fans featured in the video were paid to participate in the fan march. That’s right: among other things, thousands of supporters from the participating countries paraded through Doha on November 11, passing the Royal Palace. According to our information, most of them are guest workers and many come from India. As Rashiq, wearing an England jersey, told AFP: “I am from India. I have been working in Qatar for nine years. I love English football, that’s why I support England. We are all from Kerala in India ” ,

According to AFP information, police were informed of the fan march in advance and stayed at a distance – contrary to what is usual with such large crowds in Qatar. Many of the participants are migrant workers, an organizer confirmed to AFP. Qatar has offered expatriate workers in the country heavily discounted tickets to World Cup games for US$10. DW requests to those involved in organizing the fan march remained unanswered.

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