Is Michelle Obama to become the new face of Victoria's Secret? No, that's not true. The story was published by a liberal satire website that tries to misleadTrump supporters and Republicans into sharing made up stories that are clearly marked as satire when you actually click them. Articles from the site are frequently copied by foreign-run fake news websites. The people liking and sharing these stories are enriching foreign website operators (or a liberal from Maine) via the ad revenue generated with the content which is probably not what they expected or wanted.
In the world of women's fashion, Victoria's Secret is a juggernaut. Earning billions last year from their mail-order and internet sales, along with their successful retail store franchises, it's a company that constantly dominates the Fortune 500. And now, First Lady Michelle Obama will be the public face of that institution.
In a contract rumored to net her upwards of eleventy-three million dollars a year, the bestselling author will be featured in print, television, and Facebook advertisements, as well as live chats and meet and greets at various outlets. Company spokesperson Mona Rounddick explained why Obama was the top choice :
"She's powerful, successful, strong, intelligent and sexy - everything we want Victoria's Secret to represent. Except urging kids to eat broccoli. We're just gonna keep that part on the down low. The campaign is gonna be massive, and we certainly hope that conservatives, who think it's a funny joke to pretend she's transgender will see it everywhere and tear off their own penises."
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In the world of women's fashion, Victoria's Secret is a juggernaut. Earning billions last year from their mail-order and internet sales, along with their successful retail store franc...
The story was posted in the category "Michelle Obama Fan Fiction" and the site is plastered with satire warnings and disclaimers. Anyone with two brain cells who reads the article quickly notices the story is one big joke. That hasn't stopped several foreign-run fake news sites from copying it though, hoping to catch some advertising dollars by reposting it into various conservative groups and pages on Facebook.
The site is part of the "America's Last Line of Defense" network of satire websites run byself-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair from Maine along with a loose confederation of friends and allies. Blair has been in a feud with fact checking website Snopes for some time now and has also criticized other fact checkers in the past who labeled his work "fake news" instead of satire. In reaction to this he has recently rebranded all his active websites and Facebook pages so they carry extremely visible disclaimers everywhere.
Every site in the network has an about page that reads (in part):
Before you complain and decide satire is synonymous with "comedy":
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.
Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined. Any similarities between this site's pure fantasy and actual people, places, and events are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and satirical. See above if you're still having an issue with that satire thing.
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.
Here is a video of Blair explaining how his process works:
If you are interested in learning more about Blair and the history of his sites, here is something to get you started:
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 obamawatcher.com as:
A site that publishes false stories and hoaxes that are often mistaken for real news, part of a network named America's Last Line of Defense run by hoax perpetrator Christopher Blair.
According to NewsGuard the site does not maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability. Read their full assessment here.
We wrote about obamawatcher.com before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site: