6 B.S. Viral Stories: 'Frozen' Isn't Causing Divorces
There are so many bullshit stories being passed off as real on the Internet that we could fill 25 entire articles with examples -- in fact, we just did. Ten months after we began our crusade for truth, it appears that at least one other website has taken to sifting out the turds of the Web ... albeit using our exact same title model while doing it. We don't mind. After all, gospel is meant to be shared.
With that in mind, it looks like we have roughly another 2,100 more months of this until the entire Internet is a utopia of accountability, so let's get moving!
That "Man Fights Shark" GoPro Video Is So Fake
Sharks are nature's reminder that while mankind may have spawned from the ocean, that's pretty much the extent of the courtesy, lest we are torn limb from limb by giant mouth bullets. Similarly, these swimming sarlacc pits are as good a reason as any not to go anywhere near Australia, as highlighted by a recent viral video reported by Mashable, Huffington Post, Epoch Times, MSN, NY Post, and Time:
"How long since we fell for a shark-related hoax? A week? OK, go for it."
Twenty four million people have soiled their pants watching that video on YouTube, so there's a good chance you've either seen it or had it described to you in extreme detail by that guy at the office. It starts with a GoPro-wearing Australian jumping into the water, only to hear his friend with the extremely good eyesight shouting "Shark!"
"Also, there's a whale over there, near Japan!"
Our protagonist does what everyone would do in this situation: Yes, he swims straight in the direction his friend pointed at and then stands still in order to get a good shot of the passing shark. But the real harrowing moment comes at the revelation that the shark is also able to teleport in the water like a slightly more razor-toothed Nightcrawler:
You can tell it's a fake because there isn't a hint of yellow in the water.
Those two shots are a few frames apart, yet the shark magically changes position. Maybe it's just an awkward cut that we're not understanding ... but how about the part where the shark is so consistently terrorizing that it actually attacked two different swimmers in the exact same manner, both of whom uploaded different videos of it on the same day?
In fairness, this does support the teleportation theory.
The second video was meant to be a parody of the first, but it illustrates how easy it is to fake this stuff. So either these videos were a hoax, or Syfy just found the real-life inspiration for an upcoming Teleportashark movie no doubt being cast with Z-list actors as we speak.
Steve Martin Isn't Doing a Gay-Themed Father of the Bride 3
Movie rumor sites are the faith healing of entertainment news: Either they're right and everyone praises them, or they completely fuck the dog and everyone just shrugs it off as a consequence of the trade. For example, take this shining moment from a few weeks ago:
It's official: Kieran Culkin got typecast.
Steve Martin being a grouch during a gay military wedding? Delightful and topical! According to Vulture, Slash Film, MSNBC, Huffington Post, the Guardian, and any and all movie news blogs, the threequel, directed by the originals' Charles Shyer, would follow Martin's character as he struggles with his now grown-up and gay son marrying the son of a Navy SEAL. We're guessing that Martin is already warming up his "what the hell is going on" face for a re-creation of the original poster, only with a dude kissing him on each cheek this time. Right?
Wait, he isn't. As you probably guessed by now, this came not from a studio announcement, but rather an anonymous source on a film blog -- the same inexplicably popular blog that two days later announced Chronicle's Max Landis as the writer of Ghostbusters 3, only to be foiled by Twitter once again.
While we're at it: Did you lose your password, Max?
To be fair, if we had to point fingers, it wouldn't be at the misinformation so much as the ridiculous studio sequels actually coming out that make these stories so sadly believable.
A Naked Sunbather Did Not Cause a Traffic Pileup
There are three types of story no newsroom can resist: the ones about senseless destruction, the ones about foreigners being wacky, and the ones about public nudity. Smash these things together and it's easy to see how this little baby caught fire so damn fast:
It took an impressive amount of restraint not to name this "BUTT FLASHING LEADS TO REAR ENDING."
It turns out Arnold in Terminator isn't the only Austrian who likes showing pedestrians his privates: The account in question came accompanied by a photograph of the unknown female sunbather, who supposedly left the scene after causing a driver to be distracted enough to start a chain reaction of fender benders. Her perfect crime lit up the front pages of International Business Times, Daily Mail, Yahoo, Jezebel, and the Mirror.
Only here's the thing: We did this really amazing trick called "Google image search" and found that the above photo -- the photo that every story about this has passed along -- existed as far back as 2011. It took us 40 seconds to figure this out ... something that HuffPost also managed to do after their own commenters pointed out that the original photograph was used in an old Reddit post. Not only that, but the window lady is apparently from Estonia, not Austria:
Pictured: a more thorough investigation than the one International Business Times did.
So this is what this world has come to: Reddit and comment sections are now objectively more reliable for facts than actual news articles.
No, People Aren't Getting Divorced Over the Movie Frozen
While China might be the current house tap for crazy foreign news, Japan is never too far behind. Case in point:
But hey, at least the headline isn't-
... never mind.
That would be a Japanese husband who got thrown on the D-train to Lonelyville all because of his distaste for a certain popular Disney film. The story spread faster than a "Let It Go" cover, as CBS, NY Post, Uproxx, and even the Guardian cashed in on the absurdity -- all of which was originated by, and we quote, "one anonymous 31-year-old man" on a goddamn marriage advice forum. Even in the unlikely case that the "31-year-old" wasn't a bored teenager making shit up just for kicks, who says he's telling the truth? We're no marriage experts, but we have seen What About Bob? enough times to know that thinking your wife left you because of a trivial difference is way more of a red flag than the trivial difference itself.
Now that's a movie worth ending your marriage over.
For fuck's sake, it's like the Guardian and CBS didn't read the last time we pointed out how immensely ridiculous the thought of reporting a random and anonymous Japanese forum post was. Heck, it's almost as if the Guardian and CBS don't even read Cracked at all!
Sorry, Bumblebees Don't Heroically Save Other Bumblebees
Thanks to Pixar's secret agenda to sentimentalize every goddamn lump with a mouth and eyes, we can't help but turn the natural plight of all creatures big and small into an opera of good and evil. For instance, check out the fleeting viral video of the week:
DreamWorks is already working on the ripoff version starring houseflies.
Amazing. Apparently we not only are able to detect the narrative and motivation of these fuzzy insects, but also can tell that they're related. In case you're lazy, the video shows one little bee being slowly and terrifyingly approached by its eight-legged captor before a second bumblebee comes barreling to the rescue like a Leeroy Jenkins/John McClane lovechild, supposedly stinging the spider before making a clean break.
The downside is that the spider now has the powers and proportional strength of a bumblebee.
It's an amazing story ... completely unsupported by science, as one biologist has since pointed out that not only do bees completely lack the ability for such heroic camaraderie, but also possess stingers that look nothing like the one briefly seen intersecting the spider, meaning that it's more likely the bee's leg than its ass sword in the shot. As for "saving" the other bumblebee, it was probably never in any danger, since the biologist also says it was too big for the spider -- something that anyone should have been able to discern by watching the fucking video.
A Woman in China Isn't Living With 100,000 Cockroaches
Just because we featured a story from Japan this time, don't think we're neglecting good ol' China. Here's what's on today's menu, courtesy of Metro, Perez Hilton, NY Daily News, the Independent, *deep comical breath* News.au, and Shanghaiist:
"Reports that she looks like Jerry O'Connell unconfirmed."
Gross! What could possibly drive a person to adopt cockroaches, of all things, as her family? Why not caterpillars, or something at least remotely cute? Unless you're farming them for money or something, there's no reasonable excuse for living with-
Oh. That's actually a thing. In fact, cockroaches are used for all sorts of fun and lucrative products over there, ranging from pharmaceutical to culinary, meaning that owning 100,000 of them isn't so crazy of an endeavor ... but does this lady have to share a home with them? Nope, and she actually doesn't. The above articles are technically correct, in that the cockroaches live in "her house" because she owns the place, but they left out the part from the original story clarifying that she doesn't actually live there. She eats, sleeps, and presumably washes her hands extensively in some other non-cockroach-infested place.
That's it. So basically the entire story of a crazy Chinese woman living with cockroaches boils down to a woman referring to her livestock as "babies" in an off-the-cuff comment during an interview (otherwise known as more than enough for the media to lose its collective shit).