The 71-year-old businessman Chris Oomen wants to support the Dutch media landscape in the fight against fake news and therefore bought the press service Algemeen Nederlands Pesbureau (ANP) from John de Mol.

He says so in an interview in

the Volkskrant


The news agency is a monument within the Dutch news supply, has been around since 1934 and provides its services to just about every major news medium in our country.

Oomen, who built up his wealth of nine hundred million euros through high-speed trading, among other things, saw the danger of fake news after the election of US President Donald Trump in 2016.

"He lied about things that everyone could see on screen. You see the same denial of reality in the Netherlands, such a Mr Baudet does the same. I think the freedom that people allow themselves in our democracy sometimes go too far," said Oomen.

"Freedom of expression may be called a great good, it is also dangerous in a sense, it brings instability in a society. Under the influence of social media, people convert to the most crazy ideas"

To substantiate his opinion, he points to the example of the Virsustruth movement: "I know antivaxxers, to whom I try to explain how antisocial it is not to be vaccinated against corona. This way you contribute to the possibility that the virus will spread. spreads and mutates. You can't really say it, but if you don't get vaccinated, I think you no longer have the right to take precedence over anyone's regular care. I think we should open that discussion , it has to be ready at some point."

'No other company would have done that'

In March 2018, the ANP was bought by John de Mols Talpa.

De Mol also said at the time that he was going to fight against 'fake news' and also wanted to make a fist with his company against international parties such as Facebook and Google.

But more than three years later, De Mol no longer seems to find that mission so urgent.

"The ANP is a wonderful company, but the synergy with Talpa Network has diminished because of our shift in focus. I am delighted that the ANP will have an excellent new owner for the long term with Chris Oomen", De Mol said after the takeover.

Oomen tells

de Volkskrant

that he paid a little more for the ANP than planned: "I made an offer that represented the economic value, but De Mol had paid a strategic value himself, because he wanted it at the time. I am somewhere sit in the middle, maybe a little more on his side. No other company would have done that."