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Hoax Alert

Defunct Fake News Website NCScooper Is Back As "Gish Gallop"

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 25 Mar 2018 00:26:14 Z)

Remember the Nevada County Scooper? It was a satirical fake news website that disappeared somewhere in 2017 but before it went away it was responsible for such fake story titles as:

  • Donald Trump Tours Chemtrail Plane, Promises to Terminate Program
  • Scaramucci Posts Nude Photos Of His Wife As Revenge For Divorce
  • Facebook to Ban All Flat Earth Groups
  • Doctors Rushing to Remove Sally Yates' Foot from Ted Cruz's Rectum
  • Waste Management To Offer Dead Body Pickup Service In Response To Proposed Health Care Changes

But now it seems the site is back as "Gish Gallop":

Screenshot of https://www.gishgallop.com/

What makes us say that? Several things, actually:

  • The site uses the same Google Analytics ID as the NCScooper ("UA-51774125")
  • If you use the Twitter share button on the site it says you are sharing "via @ncscooper":

ncscooper.png

  • The disclaimer on the website (archived here) contains following passage :

Notice of intent
This website is satirical in scope and intent. It provides social criticism in a satirical, sometimes news-genre setting. We are not a fake news site, but rather an entertainment one. Sometimes it's just plain-old crappy writing with a few bad jokes. Anyhow, if this offends you, you might want to consider doing something else with your time not looking at the Internet. Really, the quality of your life will improve dramatically. Also, our intention is not to fool anyone, but if you do get fooled please don't sweat it. Please have fun and lighten up and watch out for Snopes.com. We're not sure they've had all their vaccinations.

That sounds very similar to this passage in the old disclaimer on NCScooper:

The Scooper is a satirical website is in scope and intent. Sometimes it's funny; often it is not. in scope and intent. It provides social criticism in a satirical, sometimes news-genre setting. We are not a "fake news" site, but rather an entertainment one. Sometimes it's just plain-old crappy writing with a few bad jokes.Our intention is not to fool or trick anyone, but obviously it happens. We firmly believe that you can soften a person's willingness to listen by injecting irony, and yes sometimes humor, into the conversation.

The site was only registered about two weeks ago:

Domain:gishgallop.com
Registrar:GoDaddy.com, LLC
Registration Date:2018-03-14
Expiration Date:2019-03-14
Updated Date:2018-03-16

And just a day later the first post appeared on the site's Facebook page (archived here):

We look forward to seeing what will happen on the site in the future!

About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

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