Fake News: Daniel Mais NO Longer Missing For 3 Days, NO Need To Share

Fact Check

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Daniel Mais NO Longer Missing For 3 Days, NO Need To Share

A missing child alert for 15-year old Daniel Mais went out via a website named "The Daily Gospel" and was still going strong today, being massively shared online. But according to Fox News the boy was already found safe and sound more than a week ago, on March 12, 2018.

That didn't stop The Daily Gospel from publishing an article on March 15, 2018 titled "Boy Has Been Missing For 3 Days, Please 'Share' Now" (archived here) which opened:

A missing child alert was issued Monday for a 15-year-old boy from Volusia County.

According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Daniel Mais was last seen in the 300th block of Ocean Avenue in Port Orange.

He was last seen wearing a green T-shirt with a picture of a kangaroo and the word "Army," black gym shorts and flip-flops.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to call the FDLE at 1-888-356-4774 or the Port Orange Police Department at 386-527-5653.

He needs your help.

Will you please 'SHARE'?

The post is still up on the site and hasn't been modified. Users on social media who saw this summary probably shared it without giving it a second thought:

Boy Has Been Missing For 3 Days, Please 'Share' Now

A missing child alert was issued Monday for a 15-year-old boy from Volusia County. According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Daniel Mais was last seen in the 300th block of Ocean Avenue in Port Orange. He was last seen wearing a green T-shirt with a picture of a kangaroo and the word "Army," black gym shorts and flip-flops.

When you see an alert about a missing person online, always Google their name + the word "missing" first. There is usually a good chance the person has already been found.

It is unclear why The Daily Gospel opted to publish the notice about the missing boy three days *after* he had already been found, but we suspect the 250,000+ interactions on Facebook brought them a quite a nice traffic surge that was just too good to give up on.

Want to inform others about the accuracy of this story?

See who is sharing it (it might even be your friends...) and leave the link in the comments.:


  Maarten Schenk

Maarten Schenk is the co-founder and COO/CTO of Lead Stories and an 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.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

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