‘Breaking news’ report circulating via social media claims that much loved naturalist and documentary film-maker Sir David Attenborough has died.
The claims in the report are untrue. There are no credible news reports that support the claim that Sir David Attenborough has died. The false death report comes via a disgraceful fake-news website that is designed to attract site visitors under false pretenses.
BREAKING NEWS: Sir David Attenborough Dies Age 90
According to a ‘breaking news’ report currently being shared via Facebook and other social media sites, much loved environmentalist and TV presenter Sir David Attenborough has died of a heart attack. The article bemoans Sir’ David’s passing and describes his work. It asks that readers share the post ‘to inform people of the sad loss of a plant and wildlife legend’.
However, the claims in the report are callous lies designed to trick people into visiting a fake-news website called ‘Mac Professional News’ and sharing its bogus material. Sir David Attenborough is not dead. There are no credible news or media reports that support the claim that he has passed away or suffered a heart attack.
The more visitors the site gets, the more revenue it can generate. And by tricking readers into sharing the fake reports, the contemptible owners of the site know that their material will reach an ever-widening audience.
The site publishes or regurgitates an ongoing stream of clickbait nonsense, including false reports claiming that actor Vin Diesel has died in a car accident, that a ‘real life angel’ has fallen from the sky in London, and that a 600 pound woman has given birth to a 40 pound baby.
Unlike some other fake-news sites, this site does not include any sort of disclaimer that might alert readers that the material it contains is fiction rather than real news.
Fake celebrity death reports like this one continue to be very common. It is wise to verify any celebrity death reports that come your way before you share them with others. Searching a news portal such as Google News will quickly reveal if a claim about a famous person’s death is true. If a famous person does die, the news is always extensively covered by mainstream media outlets around the world.
Last updated: July 11, 2016
First published: July 11, 2016
By Brett M. Christensen
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