In the fast-paced world of today, not all of us have the time to actually "read" news articles beyond the headline, just like not all journalists have the time to "check their sources" or "give a shit about the fake stories they're spreading." Fortunately, we've sort of taken it upon ourselves to become the Batman of news -- hiding in the shadows, cleaning up the Internet one hyperbolic story at a time, all while wearing our undies on the outside.
#4. Kurt Cobain's "Old Roommate" Isn't Selling His Stuff on Craigslist
Twenty years after Kurt Cobain's death, even the city that once arrested the guy for vandalism is trying to cash in on his memory by erecting a tourist-bait statue of him crying. That's why it didn't seem too far-fetched when the following headline popped up everywhere:
"Including torn jeans, a box that looks kind of like a heart, and Krist Novoselic."
According to everyone from Billboard to the Guardian, the late idol had skipped out on rent and in turn left the worst rock memorabilia imaginable in the form of a '90s phone, a video game, and a pair of skis. Yep, "anonymous guy on Craigslist" is apparently a good enough source for most sites now -- even though something as simple as dropping the images of Cobain's supposed crap on Google reveals that they were taken from other websites.
Shockingly, it turned out the whole thing was a hoax perpetrated by some random jackass bored at a desk -- which is more or less how it spread as well.
#3. Everyone Is Misunderstanding the Map of State's "Favorite Bands"
Hey, remember this from your Facebook news feed last week?
Florida fish love them some Rick Ross.
This map, posted by the blog Echo Nest and reverberated by BuzzFeed and TIME, has no doubt been posted over and over again by your semiliterate friends debating aloud why Washington isn't Pearl Jam and Georgia isn't Dueling Banjos or whatever. But, as the freaking title of the map and the tiny writing under it say, these are not each state's favorite artists "above all others," as BuzzFeed completely pulled from their asses, but the most "distinctive" ones.
So what does that mean? A simple look at the original blog post clarifies that "Ginger Kwan," for example, is only the 33rd most heard artist in Alaska, but because she rates 12,062 in the country overall, that means Alaska appreciates her more than the rest. An accurate version of the map would probably look something like this:
#2. The Woman Who "Found" a Puppy in a Trash Can Was the Previous Owner
Here's all the heartbreak from 10 Pixar movies condensed into one image:
We'll wait while you clean all that dust that suddenly appeared in your room.
Look at that stupid little thing -- according to Yahoo, the Washington Times, and your local news station, a Grand Rapids woman found the adorable yipping wad crying like a forsaken newsie in a cold trash can before giving it a new lease by turning it in at a shelter. When people started lining up around the block to adopt it, the authorities reminded everyone that there are thousands of dogs waiting for a home that weren't left in trash cans ... like, you know, this one:
"In other news, fuck this world. Just fuck it, right in the ass. More after this."
When the sad story hit the news, neighbors pointed out that the dog actually belonged to the woman's family before they gave him away because he needed an expensive operation -- she just made up the trash can story because she didn't want to seem like a "bad person." Nice job there.
#1. That $10 Million in Found Gold Did Not Come from a Heist
Last week, when we told you about the couple who recently came upon a cool $10 mil in gold coins literally under their feet, we lamented that there wasn't a cooler story behind the discovery. Well, other websites didn't seem so troubled:
Apparently the coins match that of a 1900s heist of the San Francisco mint, meaning that the couple who found them can either A) return the loot to the government or B) defend it with Tommy guns. Or at least that's what was reported by ABC News, Gawker, and more ... none of which wondered when "fishing guide Jack Trout" became the foremost expert in old coins. Seriously, that was the original source for the "probably a heist" story.
It's not like his name is Jack History.
Meanwhile, other experts (among them the government) have chimed in to add, "Nope, that's silly." Sometimes $10 million in gold coins is just $10 million in gold coins, people.