Fake News: Monroe Woman Did NOT Die In Cinema While Watching IT Remake

Hoax Alert

  • by: Maarten Schenk

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below.

Fake News: Monroe Woman Did NOT Die In Cinema While Watching IT Remake

Known fake news website Sunday Post published an article titled "Monroe Woman Dies In Cinema While Watching IT Remake". It opened:

A 41-year-old woman died in a Monroe cinema auditorium Friday while watching a screening of Stephen Kings horror movie remake, IT.

The incident occurred at the Cinemark Cinema in Monroe, a town in the Ouachita parish, Louisiana. The cinema-goer attended the new release screening with friends and had complained of chest pains and difficulty breathing during one the film's climax scenes. According to witnesses, the woman let out a large scream and then collapsed in her seat.

The woman's friends called EMTs however by the time they arrived the woman was unresponsive and died at the scene.

We were unable to confirm the events described in the article actually happened. There is a Cinemark cinema in Monroe, Lousiana but we were unable to find any reliable news outlet that reported on the death. There is also no name given for the victim. And we have reasons to believe the Sunday Post can't be trusted.

monroe.jpg

The website Sunday Post is part of a network of sites designed to look like local news outlets with generic-looking front pages. Away from the front page these sites publish one fake story after another. Often the stories are nearly identical with some details changed: locations, names, ages... Examples include the "longest penis in the world story", the "stuck fidget spinner story" or the "tainted buffet at the strip club story". The sites are either promoted via the same Facebook pages or carry advertisements linked to the same advertiser accounts on various ad networks.

Sites in the network include:

  • jacksontelegraph.com
  • sundayinquirer.com
  • sundaypost.org
  • vancouverinquirer.com
  • www.countyweekly.com
  • www.freeinquirer.com
  • alabamaobserver.com
  • denverinquirer.com
  • mississippiherald.com
  • www.albertatimes.com
  • www.borderherald.com
  • www.bostonleader.com
  • www.cairnstimes.com
  • www.floridasunpost.com
  • www.focustimes.org
  • www.foreignjournal.com
  • www.longarticles.com
  • www.pressunion.org
  • www.sundayregister.com
  • www.telegraphsun.com
  • www.unitednews.org
  • www.weekendherald.com

(Some of these sites are now defunct)

We suspect there will soon be a plethora of other stories following the same template: Man/Woman died in cinema while watching IT remake, in (local city), aged (x). We'll update this post if that happens. In the mean time we suggest you don't believe a word the Sunday Post writes...

Updates:

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  Maarten Schenk

Lead Stories co-founder Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

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