Fake News: Shark NOT Found By Boat Ramp in Gallipolis Ohio

Hoax Alert

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Shark NOT Found By Boat Ramp in Gallipolis Ohio

Was a six foot shark discovered by the boat ramp in Gallipolis, OH? No, that's not true: a viral story claiming a shark was spotted there originated on a prank website where it had been uploaded by some joker. It is not real.

The story originated from an article published on nsfnews.com on August 20, 2018 titled "Shark found by boat ramp in gallipolis Ohio" (archived here) which read in full:

There was a 6 foot shark found by a local boater in the ohio river at the boat ramp. The will be a full story tonight at 10 stay tuned

The picture of the shark that went with the story is actually from 2015, and it was taken during flooding at the Gold Coast in Australia:

The site that published the story is a prank website where users can submit their own headline, description and photo to create realistic looking prank news articles.

react365.jpg

Users don't even need to upload their own image, there is a built-in search function that will pull an appropriate image from Google image search.

The site is part of a larger network of prank sites all using the same basic layout but sometimes in different languages. It appears to be run by a Belgian company named Mediavibes or Media Vibes which is managed by a man named Nicolas Gouriou according to registration records.

Each site in the network comes with a disclaimer (sometimes translated into a different language) that reads:

This website is an entertainment website, jokes are created by users. These are humourous jokes, fantasy, fictional, that should not be seriously taken or as a source of information.

So don't fall for this prank now that we've warned you about it!

We wrote about nsfnews.com before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site:

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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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