Fake News: Michael Jordan Did NOT Resign From The Board At Nike- Did NOT Take 'Air Jordans' With Him

Hoax Alert

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Michael Jordan Did NOT Resign From The Board At Nike- Did NOT Take 'Air Jordans' With Him

Did Michael Jordan resign from the board at Nike and did he take his "Air Jordans" brand with him? No, that's not real, it was made up by a site that pretends to be satirical and tries to trick conservatives and Trump supporters into liking and sharing fake news so the fans of the site can mock them for it. It did not happen, it is not true.

The story originated from an article on Amerca's Last Line of Defense (using the domain name trumpbetrayed.us) published on September 5, 2018 titled "BREAKING: Michael Jordan Resigns From The Board At Nike-Takes 'Air Jordans' With Him" (archived here) which opened:

Michael Jordan has walked away from the Board of Directors at Nike, taking his patented "Air Jordan" line with him. While Jordan has made no public statement, his spokesman, basketball great Art Tubolls, told us under the condition of anonymity:

"Michael is a patriot. His father served this country. His grandpappy was raised free by a man who fought for the South. He doesn't have this hatred for everyone because kids don't listen to cops. He's completely against the hiring of a traitor and is taking his shoes elsewhere."

Air Jordans are Michael's own design. He obtained the patent for the exclusive pump and anti-gravity liquids in 1987. Since then, Air Jordans have sold more than a billion pairs of shoes in literally every country on Earth. There are two pairs floating on the feet of astronauts in space at this very moment.

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:

BREAKING: Michael Jordan Resigns From The Board At Nike-Takes 'Air Jordans' With Him

Michael Jordan was always a respectful athlete.

However the "spokesperson" Art Tubbols does not exist: his name is an anagram for "Busta Troll", the nickname of the owner of the website that originally published the hoax. And the words "walked away" linked to a Google translation of the phrase "You can stop. None of this is true. Click an ad and then move on with your day."

If all of that isn't enough to convince you the story is fake: the site comes with a clear satire disclaimer at the bottom of each article:

sat·ire ~ˈsaˌtī(ə)r
noun
the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, OR ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
If you disagree with the definition of satire or have decided it is synonymous with "comedy," you should really just move along.

The owner and main writer of the site is self-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has made it his full time job to troll gullible conservatives and Trump supporters into liking and sharing his articles. He runs several other websites, including potatriotpost.us, dailyworldupdate.us and nofakenewsonline.us. Sometimes he is also known under his nickname "Busta Troll". A second man working on the sites is John Prager as revealed in this earlier story we wrote.

Articles from Blair's sites frequently get copied by "real" fake news sites who often omit the satire disclaimer and any other hints the stories are fake. Blair has tried to get these sites shut down in the past but new ones keep cropping up and he keeps knocking them down.

If you see one of his stories on a site that does not contain a satire disclaimer, assume it is fake news. If you do see the satire disclaimer it is of course also fake news.

We wrote about trumpbetrayed.us 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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