“Prank” News Story Goes Viral – Why you need to fact-check before sharing

Erik Bernstein fact checking Leave a Comment

Did you catch this viral story?

You likely caught one of the many links sharing the story of a Popeye’s manager “arrested for dipping chicken in cocaine” early this month. The story went viral and was widely distributed as legitimate, something that personally pained me to see considering the page it originated on has a GIANT text box  saying “You’ve Been Pranked!” across it.

In fact, the original host for the article – channel22news.com – is built to create gag news stories and share them online. I’m not laying any fault on the site’s creators either, they make it quite clear the stories are fake. No, this is one more example of why it’s important to fact-check everything. If stories like this can be spread as truth by hundreds of thousands of people, how many pieces of “fake news” are crossing your path every day?

Erik Bernstein



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