Fake News: Kaepernick NOT Arrested By Superbowl Security

Fact Check

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Kaepernick NOT Arrested By Superbowl Security

Was Colin Kaepernick arrested by Superbowl security? No, that's not true. The story was published by a liberal satire website that tries to educate gullible Trump supporters and Republicans about the need to actually click and read links before sharing or liking them in order to avoid being embarrassed by fans of the site later. All the events described in the article are not real.

The story originated from an article published by America's Last Line of Defense on February 3, 2019 titled "BREAKING : Kaepernick Arrested By Superbowl Security" (archived here) which opened:

In what appears to have been some kind of attempted protest, Nike spokesman and unemployed thug Colin Kaepernick was seized and arrested by Superbowl security at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The stadium being used for Superbowl LIII was named in honor of actress Mercedes Ruehl, who played Tom Hanks' mother in "Big", and was also in "The Warriors."

According to sources currently within the stadium, Kaepernick entered through a side door, possibly with inside aid. He made his way upwards to the main promenade section where food and beverage retailers line the concourse, and knelt down in an entry gate, blocking it completely. Patrons moving towards their seats asked the kneeling crybaby to move, and were shown obscene gestures, and called insulting names. One man attempted to push Kaepernick out of the way, and a fracas ensued. A security team responded within seconds, pepper-spraying, beating, and then finally tasering the San Francisco menace into a puddle of liberal tears and whimpers.

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

BREAKING : Kaepernick Arrested By Superbowl Security

In what appears to have been some kind of attempted protest, Nike spokesman and unemployed thug Colin Kaepernick was seized and arrested by Superbowl security at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The sta...

But the site had a disclaimer in the header that read "Information you probably shouldn't trust" and the story was posted in the category "and the NFL, Satire". And the Mercedes-Benz stadium is named after the German car maker of course, not the actress. And Kaepernick was still retweeting things less than two hours ago while the story had been posted at least three hours back, for example this tweet by rapper and actor Common:

The site also comes with a clear satire disclaimer at the bottom of each article:

sat·ire ~ˈsaˌtī(ə)r
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.

Blair and his operation were profiled by the Washington Post on November 17, 2018 by Eli Saslow:

'Nothing on this page is real': How lies become truth in online America

November 17 The only light in the house came from the glow of three computer monitors, and Christopher Blair, 46, sat down at a keyboard and started to type. His wife had left for work and his children were on their way to school, but waiting online was his other community, an unreality where nothing was exactly as it seemed.

If you are interested in learning more about Blair and the history of his sites, here is something to get you started:

The Ultimate Christopher Blair and America's Last Line of Defense Reading List | Lead Stories

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below. Yesterday Eli Saslow at the Washington Post wrote a fantastic article about Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has been trolling conservatives and Trump supporters online for years and occasionally even made a living out of it.

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.

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

A website claiming to be satirical that publishes fabricated stories, run by Christopher Blair, a known purveyor of disinformation, that published fake stories about Senator John McCain after he passed away.

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

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

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  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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