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Home Fake-News FAKE-NEWS: ‘Prehistoric Shark Captured off Pakistan’

FAKE-NEWS: ‘Prehistoric Shark Captured off Pakistan’

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline

Circulating report claims that a giant prehistoric shark from a species that was thought to be extinct for 20 million years has been caught off the coast of Pakistan. The report features an image supposedly depicting the monster shark. 

Brief Analysis

The claims in the report are nonsense. No giant prehistoric shark has been caught off Pakistan, or anywhere else. The photograph depicts a very large but otherwise normal Great White Shark caught off the coast of South Africa in 2009. The report comes from the fake-news website World News Daily Report, which claims to be satirical. Nothing published on the site should be taken seriously.

Example

15-Ton Prehistoric Shark Captured Off Coast Of Pakistan

Karachi | A giant prehistoric shark previously thought to be extinct for more than 20 million years has been captured by local fishermen off the coast of Pakistan, reports the Islamabad Herald this morning.

Fake shark Facebook post

 

Detailed Analysis

According to a report currently circulating via social media, fishermen off Pakistan have caught a giant prehistoric shark. The report claims that the 15 ton, 10.6 meter monster may be a megalodon, a species of shark that scientists believed had been extinct for millions of years. 

The report features a photograph that supposedly depicts the monstrous shark.

However, the claims in the report are fanciful nonsense. No prehistoric shark has been captured near Pakistan, or anywhere else.

The report comes from the fake-news website World News Daily Report, which describes itself as satirical. The site includes the following disclaimer:

World News Daily Report is a news and political satire web publication, which may or may not use real names, often in semi-real or mostly fictitious ways. All news articles contained within worldnewsdailyreport.com are fiction, and presumably fake news. Any resemblance to the truth is purely coincidental, except for all references to politicians and/or celebrities, in which case they are based on real people, but still based almost entirely in fiction.

Nothing published on the site should be taken seriously.

The image featured in the report depicts a very large – but otherwise ordinary – Great White Shark caught off the coast of South Africa in 2009. The shark was 4.3 meters long and weighed in at around 700 kilos. Certainly a formidable beast, but a far cry from the 10.6-meter, 10-ton creature described in the fake article.

The report also includes a photograph of a huge tooth that it claims came from the captured sea creature.  But, in fact, the image shows a fossilised megalodon tooth found in the Atacama Desert, Chile.  The picture was sourced from Wikimedia Commons.


Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer