This story was first published on November 5, 2015
According to a report that has been making its way around the Internet since August 2015, archaeologists working in Western Australia have unearthed the remains of an 11th century Viking settlement. The message claims that foundations of three large buildings and a number of artefacts discovered at a location near Derby were almost certainly the remains of a Viking colony.
The report features a photograph of the building foundations.
However, the claims in the message are utter nonsense. No Viking settlement has been discovered in Australia. The report is a work of fiction first published by the notorious fake-news website World News Daily Report (WNDR). Nothing published on the site should be taken seriously.
The site includes the following disclaimer in its About section:
WNDR assumes however all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website – even those based on real people – are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any persons, living, dead, or undead is purely a miracle.
The photograph does depict the remains of a Viking building but it was taken at the Belmont Longhouse Excavation in Shetland, not Western Australia.
An earlier – and equally fake – WNDR report claimed that the ruins of an ancient city had been discovered in an Australian desert. Another claimed – again falsely – that giant human skeletons had been found at a site near Uluru in central Australia.
AUSTRALIA: ARCHAEOLOGISTS UNEARTH RUINS OF VIKING TRADE CENTER
Derby| Archaeologists excavating on the site of some recently discovered ruins on the northern coast of Western Australia, may have just made the greatest find in the history of the country: the remains an 11th century Viking settlement.
Importance NoticeAfter 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 YouI 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 DateHoax-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!