Fake News: Flight Crew Did NOT Take A Knee And Did NOT Walk Off, NOT Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway

Fact Check

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Flight Crew Did NOT Take A Knee And Did NOT Walk Off, NOT Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway

Did a flight crew take a knee, walk off and leave the New Orleans Saints stranded on the runway in their plane? No, that's not true: several Macedonian fake news websites copied an old satire story from a liberal site that tries to get conservatives and Trump supporters angry or exited enough so they like and share their made up stories as real news (for which fans of the site then mock them). The story is old and false.

The story appeared most recently as an article published by newly launched site weirdworldinfo.com on September 11, 2018 titled "Flight Crew Takes A Knee And Walks Off, Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway! - weirdworldinfo.com" (archived here) which opened:

The New Orleans Saints made the mistake of once again disrespecting our veterans, our country and our flag. After an embarrassing opening to a game with the worst ratings in Saints' history, the players and coaches learned that their actions have consequences.Both the pilot and co-pilot of the Boeing 737 the Saints use to travel are combat-hardened American heroes.

They flew sorties over Baghdad with Saddam's best weapons firing back.They fought with their lives for your freedom and watched many of their friends die. Today they took a stand for those brave souls:"We couldn't be a party to the disrespect. We waited until we were cleared and last off the runway for the night , walked out of the cockpit, took a knee and deplaned.

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

Flight Crew Takes A Knee And Walks Off, Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway! - weirdworldinfo.com

The New Orleans Saints made the mistake of once again disrespecting our veterans, our country and our flag. After an

According to WHOIS information weirdworldinfo.com was registered three days ago by someone from Macedonia:

Domain Information
Domain:
weirdworldinfo.com
Registrar:
One.com A/S
Registration Date:
2018-09-10
Expiration Date:
2019-09-10
Updated Date:
2018-09-10
Status:
ok
Name Servers:
ns01.one.com
ns02.one.com
Registrant Contact
Name:
REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Organization:
REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Street:
REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
City:
REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Postal Code:
REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Country:
MK
Phone:
REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Email:
https://www.one.com/en/whois

But that site wasn't the only one pushing the hoax.

Flight Crew Takes A Knee And Walks Off, Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway! - cukam.com

The New Orleans Saints made the mistake of once again disrespecting our veterans, our country and our flag. After an embarrassing opening to a game with the worst ratings in Saints' history, the players and coaches learned that their actions have consequences.Both the pilot and co-pilot of the Boeing 737 the Saints use to travel are combat-hardened American heroes.

Or how about:

Flight Crew Takes A Knee And Walks Off, Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway! - universalemedia.net

The New Orleans Saints made the mistake of once again disrespecting our veterans, our country and our flag. After an embarrassing opening to a game with the worst ratings in Saints' history, the players and coaches learned that their actions have consequences.Both the pilot and co-pilot of the Boeing 737 the Saints use to travel are combat-hardened American heroes.

All three sites are part of a network of Macedonia-based fake news websites. They regularily republish old articles from other sites hoping audiences (and the original authors) won't notice.

In case you were wondering, the story was false. We debunked it here almost a year ago:

Fake News: Flight Crew Did NOT Take A Knee Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway | Lead Stories

Fake/satire website Freedum Junkshun posted an article titled "Flight Crew Takes A Knee And Walks Off, Leaving New Orleans Saints Stranded On Runway" which opened: The New Orleans Saints made the mistake of once again disrespecting our veterans, our country and our flag.

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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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