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“NASA 15 Days of Darkness” Hoax Returns

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline:
Report circulating via social media claims that NASA has confirmed that the Earth will experience 15 days of darkness in November 2017. Another version claims that the supposed event will occur in June 2017.


Brief Analysis:
The claims in the reports are utter nonsense.  NASA has certainly not confirmed any such event for June, November, or any other month. In fact, the report is just the latest version of a silly hoax that has been published over and over again in various guises since at least 2012. From time to time, another spammy, clickbait website will publish a new version of the hoax in a rather lame effort to attract more visitors.

Example:
NASA Confirms Earth Will Experience 15 Days Of Darkness In November 2017We have come across many reports regarding earth and its changes in recent times and not many materialize. However, this time NASA has confirmed that earth will experience total darkness for 15 days in November 2017 starting from November 15 to November 29.According to NASA this phenomenon was in the pipeline for a long period and the astronomers from NASA have informed that the world will experience a strange event from November 15 at 3:00 am and it is likely to continue until November 30, 4:45 pm.NASA Days of Darkness Hoax



Detailed Analysis:
According to a “news” report that is currently travelling the interwebz via social media shares, the Earth will experience 15 days of total darkness in November 2017. An alternative version of the report claims that the “event” will occur in June 2017.

Supposedly, Charles Bolden, head of NASA, has provided the White House with a 1000 page document detailing the event. The report claims that the coming blackout is due to “an astronomical event between Venus and Jupiter” and will take place between November 15 at 3:00 am and  November 30 at 4:45 pm. The alternative version uses the same dates and times but replaces “November” with “June”.

Not surprisingly, the claims in the report are fanciful nonsense. Of course, no such blackout is set to occur and the supposed event has certainly not been confirmed by NASA.

In fact, the story is just the latest version of a long line of very similar “days of darkness” hoaxes that go back to at least 2012. The number of days of darkness has varied in different incarnations of the hoaxes as has the dates during which the event was supposed to occur. It hardly needs to be said that, despite all of the previous predictions, no such darkness event has ever taken place. Nor will it in June or November 2017 as predicted in these latest versions.

After the 2012 version of the hoax went viral, NASA published the following note dismissing the “total blackout” claims:

Q: Is NASA predicting a “total blackout” of Earth on Dec. 23 to Dec. 25?

A: Absolutely not. Neither NASA nor any other scientific organization is predicting such a blackout. The false reports on this issue claim that some sort of “alignment of the Universe” will cause a blackout. There is no such alignment (see next question). Some versions of this rumor cite an emergency preparedness message from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. This is simply a message encouraging people to be prepared for emergencies, recorded as part of a wider government preparedness campaign. It never mentions a blackout.

From time to time, another click bait fake-news website will resurrect this tired old hoax and launch it anew in an effort to gain more site visitors and trick them into further promoting the site’s bogus material via shares and likes.


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