Fake News: Court Did NOT Order Tiger Woods To Take 137 Paternity Tests

Hoax Alert

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Court Did NOT Order Tiger Woods To Take 137 Paternity Tests

Did a court order Tiger Woods to take 137 paternity tests? No, that's not true: the story was made up years ago by a Canadian entertainment website that makes a living by publishing fictional stories often involving weird crimes, bizarre sex acts or strange accidents. It is not real. In January 2019 it briefly went viral again after being posted to several Facebook pages.

The story originated from an article published on August 18, 2017 titled "Court orders Tiger Woods to take 137 paternity tests" (archived here) which opened:

Miami, FL | The famous golf star Tiger Woods has taken another hit this morning as a state court ordered him to undergo a total of 137 paternity tests.

The court's decision comes after request formulated by 121 women who claim to have been Wood's mistresses and to have given birth to his children.

Many of the women yelled and cried with joy when the judge announced his verdict, as some of them had been fighting for more than seven years to obtain this judgment.

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail so they would have had no idea it was an old story:

Court orders Tiger Woods to take 137 paternity tests

Miami, FL | The famous golf star Tiger Woods has taken another hit this morning as a state court ordered him to undergo a total of 137 paternity tests. The court's decision comes after request formulated by 121 women who claim to have been Wood's mistresses and to have given birth to his children.

The story was posted to the Facebook page of musician Nicc Johnson earlier today, which seems to have caused it to go viral:

The website World News Daily Report is a well known satire website specialized in posting hoaxes and made up stories. The disclaimer on their website is pretty clear about that even though you have to scroll all the way down the page to find it:

World News Daily Report assumes all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website - even those based on real people - are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any person, living, dead or undead, is purely a miracle.

It is run by Janick Murray-Hall and Olivier Legault, who also run the satirical Journal de Mourréal, a satirical site spoofing the (real) Journal de Montéal. Very often their stories feature an image showing a random crazy mugshot found in a mugshot gallery on the internet or on a stock photo website superimposed over a background of flashing police lights or crime scene tape.

Articles from the site are frequently copied (sometimes even months or years later) by varous fake news websites that omit the satire disclaimer and present the information as real.

NewsGuard, a company that uses trained journalist to rank the reliability of websites, describes worldnewsdailyreport.com as:

A website that publishes hoaxes and made-up stories that are often widely shared and mistaken for news.

According to NewsGuard the site does not maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability. Read their full assessment here.

We wrote about worldnewsdailyreport.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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