The Onion Fools Foreign Reporters Once Again

from the pealing-away-at-the-fact-checking-myth dept

The Onion strikes again! Seven years ago, we wrote about how a Beijing news program believed a story in The Onion concerning threats by Congress to move to a new Capitol building (with a retractable dome). The latest is that two Bangladeshi newspapers apparently reprinted the "news" from The Onion claiming that astronaut Neil Armstrong was convinced that the moon landings were faked after reading some conspiracy theory sites online. You can almost forgive foreign reporters for not knowing that The Onion is satire, but it just reinforces how little fact checking the supposedly "professional" press does anywhere around the world.


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    Dark Helmet (profile), Sep 4th, 2009 @ 2:23pm

    Really?

    We're picking on Bangladeshi newspapers now? Sorry, Mike, but that one seems a little petty to me.

    Want to head down to the Special Olympics and decry their athletic skills next?

    Actually, that could be kind of....naaaaahhhhh.

     

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      Some Other Guy, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 2:33pm

      Re: Really?

      Comparing the people (or press) of Bangladesh to the participants of the Special Olympics might be seen to be a little iffy, I think.

       

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      Josh - To common a name. This is me. (profile), Sep 8th, 2009 @ 10:30am

      Re: Really?

      DH - keep in mind that due to advances in prosthetics there are a lot of athletes in the Special Olympics that are only there due to a missing limb, or two, and are not allowed to participate in a standard Olympic competition.

      Other then that...I agree with you. :)

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 2:31pm

    Hell they probably think FOX News is a reputable source as well.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 2:35pm

    I actually read that article about Neil Armstrong before you even posted it but to think that MSM (mainstream media) would pick it up and claim it as their own without giving credit? ROFLOL.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 2:37pm

      Re:

      Maybe I should write something on my blog and make some really juicy story up and see if the mainstream media picks up on it.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 3:04pm

        Re: Re:

        Can someone give me an idea of a juicy fake story to make up and write on a blog so that mainstream media can copy it.

         

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          Dark Helmet (profile), Sep 4th, 2009 @ 7:47pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          "Can someone give me an idea of a juicy fake story to make up and write on a blog so that mainstream media can copy it."

          Please, please, please go with a Clinton/Obama wife swap faker...

          Or how about an account by the pilot of that plane from S. Korea saying that Clinton nailed those two Chinese journalists. Makes those pictures of him welcoming them to the plane all the more creepy...

           

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    Esteban, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 2:42pm

    You call that lack-of-fact-checking

    You call that lack-of-fact-checking?

    A few days ago an Argentinian news program reported that some teens are getting drunk with a drink called "Grog XD" (yeah, with the ex-di).
    The only source that they used was Facebook, and according to it, the drink "Grog XD" containing "kerosene, propylene glycol, artificial sweeteners, sulphuric acid, rum, acetone, red dye no. 2, scumm, axle grease, battery acid, and/or pepperoni."

    If still you don't get it, it is a fake recipe from the game Monkey's Island from like 20 years ago.

    Here is the link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2iYZy2xyR-g

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 4th, 2009 @ 3:50pm

    ha! you had to poor the grog on the bars to break out of jail...

    i read the onion article last week. So funny that the Bangladeshi's picked up on it...

     

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    Michael Long, Sep 5th, 2009 @ 2:33am

    Tabloid

    The Daily Manab Zamin is a tabloid newspaper in Bangladesh. A tabloid. Since when is a tabloid seriously considered to be a "professional" news source?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 5th, 2009 @ 8:38am

    Arrogance

    We're picking on Bangladeshi newspapers now?
    Oh right, because all you know about the country is from Western television, you think such countries are so backwards they can't possibly have any decent newspapers. A splendid way to display your skill at commenting without actually knowing anything about the subject. You're probably one of those morons that thinks every Ethiopian is starving.

     

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      Dark Helmet (profile), Sep 5th, 2009 @ 10:35am

      Re: Arrogance

      "Oh right, because all you know about the country is from Western television"

      ....yeah, no. Lifelong student of world history with time spent in the region, mostly India. Though you missed the point I was making, which was that Bangladeshi papers have little to no frame of reference for relatively small, Chicago-based satirical periodicals that are only funny because of how plausible some of the stories appear on the surface.

      But yeah, I'M the moron...

      Oh, and I know that every Ethiopian isn't starving. After all, Marvin plumped up in South Park, didn't he?

       

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      Eric Londaits (profile), Sep 5th, 2009 @ 12:06pm

      Re: Arrogance

      Perhaps it wasn't a regular newspaper but rather the Bangladeshi version of The Onion.

       

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    Lucretious, Sep 5th, 2009 @ 2:36pm

    I haven't been to The Onion for awhile. I'm really impressed at the level of quality they are putting out with their faux News outfit. Also, its a site that is making "free" work.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 8th, 2009 @ 4:09am

    the things freedom can do! imagine saying that (theonion) in a dictators country.
    well, every thing has its price

     

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    Gary Kibble (profile), Sep 8th, 2009 @ 8:10am

    Google News

    I saw the Armstrong story on my custom Google News page mixed in with the "real" news. I couldn't believe the headline and took a second look. That is when I noticed the source was Onion. My thought was that others would not be so diligent and assume the headline was true.
    I wanted to send Google a protest note asking that Onion be excluded from Google "News" but nowhere could I find a link for email feedback.

     

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