Fact Check: Fox News Did NOT Win Pulitzer Prize for Reporting During Crisis

Hoax Alert

  • by: Monte Plott
Fact Check: Fox News Did NOT Win Pulitzer Prize for Reporting During Crisis Trolling!

Did Fox News win a Pulitzer Prize for its reporting during the coronavirus crisis? Not, that's not true: The claim was made in a post on a site clearly labeled as satire and part of a well-known network of satirical websites that trolls conservatives with fiction to rile up their base.

The claim appeared in an article (archived here) published by Daily World Update on March 18, 2020, titled "Fox News Wins Pulitzer Prize for Reporting During Crisis" which opened:

Hannity, Laura, and the whole gang over at Fox News are in for a MAGA surprise! It has just been announced that they are winning one of the most coveted awards in journalism -- the Pulitzer.

Oh, the liberal media is going to be kicking dirt about this one.

This accolade is specific to their "fair and balanced" coverage of the crisis. The network has been on the ball through this entire ordeal, making sure the public is educated on the dangers of the current crisis.

Joe Barron, Chairman of the Pulitzer Committee had this to say about the nomination:

"We are pleased to announce that Pulitzer is awarding Fox News with the 'Illusory Reporting Award.' This is an honor we reserve only for them, as they have earned their place as leader in this category. Congratulations to the network and their viewership. You are America!"

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

Fox News Wins Pulitzer Prize for Reporting During Crisis

They are so deserving of this. The awards committee got it right this time.

Under the tagline "Illusory Reporting Award!" the post said:

Hannity, Laura, and the whole gang over at Fox News are in for a MAGA surprise! It has just been announced that they are winning one of the most coveted awards in journalism -- the Pulitzer.

Oh, the liberal media is going to be kicking dirt about this one.

This accolade is specific to their "fair and balanced" coverage of the crisis. The network has been on the ball through this entire ordeal, making sure the public is educated on the dangers of the current crisis.

In fact, none of the Pulitzer Prizes for 2020 have been announced. According to the Pulitzer Prize website, winners will be revealed in April, when the prizes traditionally are announced.

Also, there is no Pulitzer Prize category for "illusory reporting."

Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines illusory as "based on or producing illusion," and the satirical article cites examples from Fox News and links to clips from Fox broadcasts. The story says this about host Sean Hannity:

Specifically, on March 9, Hannity took to the airwaves to dismiss the entire thing and ignore the failure of the Trump administration, obviously intending to calm the masses, no matter how inaccurate the reporting.

Regarding host Laura Ingraham, the article, misspelling her name, says:

Laura Ingrahm obviously got the talking points memo from the White House at that time, also dismissing the emergency and calling all other reporting of the facts as "panic pushers."

The article concludes:

Oh, where would we be without these stellar journalists? Some say more prepared. Some say with a more educated populous. Some say a whole hell of a lot better off as a whole.

But, here we are. Attempting to dismiss this kind of ridiculousness on a Satire site, because we have more ethics and integrity than Faux News.

Readers are told upfront that the entire site for Daily World Update is satire, with the site's masthead carrying the slogan, "SATIRE FOR FLATEARTHERS, TRUMPSTERS AND Y'ALL QAEDA." And, in its "About" section, the states: "If you can seriously read this stuff and think it can be passed off as real to reasonable people, you need to go out, right now, and buy a sense of humor and a clue."

Daily World Update is part of the "America's Last Line of Defense" network of satire websites run by self-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 visible disclaimers everywhere.

Every site in the network has an about page that reads (in part):

About Satire
Before you complain and decide satire is synonymous with "comedy":

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.

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 that 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:

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 journalists to rank the reliability of websites, describes dailyworldupdate.us as:

A news site that publishes false stories and hoaxes that are often mistaken for real news. The site is part of a network 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 dailyworldupdate.us before. Here are our most recent articles that mention the site:

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