Macron and the “wig theory”

A piece of hair, a wig, a transplant… The web is passionate about Emmanuel Macron’s hair. A theoretical journey comes from afar. Written by Benoit Fournier and Anna Pace of La Netsquad.

On March 8, 2022, she posted a blog on Mediapart’s Club claiming to reveal “keep secretBy Emmanuel Macron: He’s been wearing a wig, and that’s since 2019. And this post quickly gained a presence on the Internet, taking advantage of the publication of numerous messages that took advantage of this theory, often with a humorous angle or through Memes.

A ‘well-kept secret’ is spreading fast…

More serious covers have also been found, which feed criticism of Emmanuel Macron, from accounts close to the far right. These quotes from the blog post hosted by Mediapart, without any affiliation with the newspaper’s editorial staff, motivate its de-publishing which is justified by the uncertain nature of the information contained therein.

In an article for CheckNews (Liberation) that returns to the phenomenon (“Why did Mediapart delete Macron’s Momot blog post? ‘), one of the journalists responsible for coordinating Mediapart then explains the chronology of events:When we discover the note, on March 8 or 9, it turns out to be a joke, it’s a joke. We decided not to publish it. We have not received any alerts from our readers“.

So it is only after filling It is known to be close to the extreme right that the choice not to publish the post was made – which leads to more or less serious accusations about wanting to hide”Information“Which criminalizes the head of state.

in his campaign seriesfilter”, Emmanuel Macron reacts and his hairdresser laughs: “I saw it in Mediapart, there is a man who says I have a wig … “

The Covid crisis: an incentive to highlightwig theory

The most obvious gateway to understanding the course of this theory, jokes and memes. It is this type of message that elicits the most important reactions: it spreads widely and is able to break out of the various bubbles that exist on social networks to reach the general public.

The origins of this humorous angle go back to the Covid-19 crisis: on the occasion of Emmanuel Macron’s various media appearances in the context of advertisements for the development of health restrictions, the development of his haircut caught the attention of some netizens in particular.

Within six months, the pressure escalates

Analysis of the tweets posted highlights four key dates during this period:

On October 28, 2020, during a televised speech to announce a new incarceration, some netizens noticed the president’s hair awkwardness, and conjured up wearing a wig to mask initial baldness.

On the occasion of a sudden intervention on the TF1 group, the February 2, 2021Netizens are comparing Emmanuel Macron’s haircut with a haircut “PlaymobilA wearable wig will be responsible.

Even more clearly, the March 25, 2021 Upon leaving the Council of Europe and in a context marked by intense fears of announcing a new confinement, the hair style of the President of the Republic is once again examined by many netizens. Then they enjoy imagining Emmanuel Macron’s recent trip to Turkey, El Dorado’s hair transplant trip – cruising through international news and the tensions that exist in Franco-Turkish relations.

The same phenomenon is repeated March 31, 2021 On the occasion of a word to the French, several messages alert, marvel and be surprised by Emmanuel Macron’s haircut.

If these mentioned messages are still sparsely shared at this time, they testify to an observation found by many netizens: something is going on in Emmanuel Macron’s skull.

The breadth of a hair from igniting the web…

From that moment on, some Internet users will have a mission: to follow the development of Emmanuel Macron’s hair transplantation. Many Internet users are used to getting acquainted with him in various contents (messages, photos, videos, memes, etc.) that can prove the correctness of the theory that Emmanuel Macron wears a wig.

This current of humor – and the popularity of which will grow over time – can explain the analysis of the blog post made by the management of Mediapart: the tone adopted, taking seriously this very superficial topic in the end, is similar to that used by the accounts that perpetuate this muzzle operation which produced quite a few highly visible posts prior to March 8th.

The far right boosts the theory’s popularity

When a Mediapart blog post accusing Macron of wearing a wig was published, it was not the humor that immediately appeared, but the criticism directed at Emmanuel Macron and “hypocrisyHe is found in the politics he leads as well as in his physical appearance, according to his opponents.

It all starts with one screenshot of The content of a Mediapart blog post relayed on Twitter by an account near the far right, which analyzes while “everything is wrong“On Emmanuel Macron. Important posts in this post inspire accounts”patriotsOr a supporter of pseudoscience posting messages with similar content, also allowing bridges with other popular Twitter theories within these communities (such as the conspiracy discussed under the hashtag #JeanMichelTrogneux, which accuses Brigitte Macron of being a transgender person).

It is the mobilization of these communities in the beginning booster The appearance of the Mediapart blog post and then allowing it to be discovered by accounts that will fit the narrative to dismiss it to other jokes and memes.

But the circulating theory of Emmanuel Macron’s wig predated the Covid-19 crisis: it is part of a stream of criticism whose origins were initially linked to Brigitte Macron accused of something similar. As of 2019, the same novels critical of the First Lady Relay their criticism to Emmanuel Macronwho is then accused of wearingWigTo hide early baldness. The factual dimension of the presidential couple then turns into a political debate, particularly in the context of the Yellow Vests crisis where pressure on the president is put forward as one of the reasons that could explain E.’s hair loss. Macron.

Another important element that will enable the far right to hold on to this theory is information from Daily For Emmanuel Macron’s 2017 campaign accounts revealing the budget for makeup and alterations made to the candidate’s second-round poster. Among the items put forward, “Hair transplantation and camouflaging the receding gulfTaken from several accounts hostile to Macron, against the regime or close to the far right as evidence of the president’s arrogance, but also of the general intent to deceive.

Quietly, this theory will gradually gain popularity within the Internet communities opposed to Emmanuel Macron, until it is taken up by influential accounts, helping to make this theory a frequent object of ridicule.

Also, if during the health crisis angle jokes and Memes It gradually appeared within the new Internet communities, and opponents of Emmanuel Macron did not depart from this theory. This was particularly the case during the introduction of the health card as many former Yellow Vest accounts and opponents of vaccination made reference to this subject; A video showing a truce for Emmanuel Macron if the latter admits that his hair isn’t really his.

In the context of fierce opposition to Emmanuel Macron’s policy, the boundary between humor and criticism is blurred

After publishing a Mediapart blog post, the emergence of this theory has overtaken its proper position to switch to the currentThis helped in the context of presidential elections where any argument to try to undermine the credibility of a candidate is welcomed.

Within the narratives vehemently opposed to the president, he was supposed to wear “Wig‘Used as a stink ball: it is mentioned in the letters listing all the reasons that could justify moving away from the handout.’Emmanuel MacronDuring the poll, along with the Alstom and McKenzie cases.

It is also linked to other popular accounts, particularly of hypothetical drug consumption – and thus cannot be substantiated by toxicological analyzes due to”plastic hair“.

The “wig theory” in the countryside

From the point of view of humour,wig theoryParticularly visible during the highlights of the campaign, and in particular during the playoff on the occasion of Emmanuel Macron’s debate against Marine Le Pen: The president’s gestures are commented onthe sequence in which Marine Le Pen delivers a print tweet kidnapped, and some netizens are also enjoying his performance pedigree during the discussion to “Wig is well positioned on his skullThese bridges between wig theory and news elicit a very important commitment, and allow continued installation muzzle operation Within societies usually distant from political issues.

It should be noted other phenomena that play particularly well with Twitter codes. Some accounts are temporarily adopting the names and pictures of traditional media profiles – in a logic similar to the procedure that host Nagui paid for during the summer of 2020 – with the aim of misleading Internet users with false information regarding “wig accidents“of which Emmanuel Macron could have been a victim, which explains his absence from the debates of the first round of the presidential election.

But in an even more mysterious way, many netizens also imagine “reveal wig“During this period, imagine the work of a foreign speaker who will come and tear Macron’s hair and thus reveal the truth to the French – or at least entertain them in an election campaign considered nice.
The desire to see the campaign transform into a spectacle punctuated by theatrical twists that is both amusing, but also offensive to Emmanuel Macron, is manifested in these messages that capitalize on a sense of dissent on the part of a large part of society. the population towards his person. Wanting to strike a good joke, a well-feeled joke becomes a disingenuous means as a medium for expressing dissatisfaction with the president’s policy.

And now?

It will be interesting to note the path this theory has taken over the coming weeks and months: the 5-year renewal of Emmanuel Macron’s mandate, obtained in part thanks to the undisguised vote of a portion of the electorate on the left and youth in the face of a far-right bloc, comparing the communities involved in spreading messages that resumewig theoryThe subject does not seem He doesn’t lose his breath in the commitment he can wake up On-line.

In a climate of disillusionment, but also of political violence, this theory can gradually transform the intentions behind the use of this joke: a means of online activism without any real political color, which aims to criticize Emmanuel Macron in one form or another. transparent.

À moins que l’enquête menée par les internautes fasse apparaître de nouveaux éléments faisant bouger les lignes du débat : un camp de partisans de la théorie de la greffe de cheveux, qui s’oppose à à ceux ché che quient s’ post for example?

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