Home Fake-News Fake News – ‘Ruins of Ancient City Discovered in Australian Desert’

Fake News – ‘Ruins of Ancient City Discovered in Australian Desert’

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline

Report being shared via social media claims that the ruins of an ancient city have been discovered in the Australian desert. The report features a photograph that supposedly depicts the Australian ruins. 

Brief Analysis

The claims in the message are nonsense. No such ruins have been found in Australia. The image actually depicts the 2000-year-old foundations of pyramids found at Sedeinga in northern Sudan. The fake report was published by World News Daily Report, a site that bills itself as satirical. Nothing published on World News Daily Report has any credibility and its reports should not be taken seriously.

Example

Ruins of Ancient City Discovered in Australian Desert

Alice Springs| A team of archaeologists working for the Australian National University, who were proceeding to an excavation near the sandstone rock formation of Uluru, has unearthed the ruins of a large precolonial city dating back to more than 1500 years ago.

Fake News Ancient City Australia

 

Detailed Analysis

According to a message that is currently circulating via social media, the ruins of an ancient city have been discovered in the Australian desert. The message links back to a longer report that claims that a team of archaeologists working for the Australian National University made the discovery near Uluru, in central Australia.

The report includes a photograph of the ruins, along with other images depicting skeletons and artefacts discovered at the site.
The report further claims that many skeletons and precious artefacts have been found on the site. Supposedly, the lead archaeologist at the site has claimed that the city was the centre of a vast empire that engaged in international trade.

However, the claims in the report are utter nonsense. No such ruins have been found anywhere in Australia.

The image of ruins featured in the story actually depicts the foundations of ancient pyramids discovered at Sedeinga in northern Sudan. The skeleton image was taken from a report about an archaeological dig in Libya. And the gold bowl shown in a third photograph is part of the Mapungubwe Collection of artefacts housed at South Africa’s University of Pretoria. The images have no connection whatsoever to Australian archaeological discoveries.

The bogus story comes courtesy of fake-news ‘satirical’ website World News Daily Report. The website 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.

The site has been responsible for a string of viral hoax reports in recent months, including false claims that giant human skeletons have been found in Iran and that a dinosaur egg has hatched in a Berlin museum.

Nothing published on the site should be taken seriously.

A number of fake-news ‘satire’ sites have appeared on the Internet over recent years. Because the stories published on these sites are presented in news format and do not always have clearly visible disclaimers, many people are apt to believe them and share them far and wide.

It is therefore wise to verify any ‘news’ reports that come your way via social media before you share them. Some minimal research via Google should quickly reveal if a story is genuine.



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