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Fake News: Islamic State NOT Invited To Enter 2018 Eurovision Song Contest

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 08 Apr 2018 15:30:46 Z)

Was ISIS (aka the Islamic State) invited to enter the Eurovision song contest this year? No, that's totally not true. A false story that made this claim originated on a satirical British website but there is no truth to it at all.

The story originated from an article published on April 8, 2018 by the Southend News Network which was titled "Islamic State invited to enter the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest" (archived here) which opened:

There has been an angry reaction online after it was announced that Islamic State has been invited to enter the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in an 'act of friendship.'

The show is due to take place on May 12th in Lisbon, and many have expressed concern about their chosen song, The Heroic Goats of Raqqa.

According to sources in the Middle East, the tune glorifies the work of the Caliphate's 'Intelligence Goats,' animals who are specially trained to gather information about members of the population who may be breaking the law with non-regulation beards.

Screenshot of http://www.southendnewsnetwork.net/news/islamic-state-invited-to-enter-the-2018-eurovision-song-contest2/

The Eurovision Song Contest (often simply called Eurovision) is the longest-running annual international TV song competition. It has been held primarily among the member countries of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) since 1956. This year's edition takes place in Lisbon, Portugal. But ISIS does not feature on the official list of participants (which has 43 countries on it).

If the parts in the story about the beards and the goats didn't give it away: we can assure our readers the story was satirical in nature.

But some people might have only seen the summary of the story on social media which may have led them into believing it was real:

Islamic State invited to enter the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest

There has been an angry reaction online after it was announced that Islamic State has been invited to enter the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in an 'act of friendship.' The show is due to take place on May 12th in Lisbon, and many have expressed concern about their chosen song, The Heroic Goats of Raqqa....

The Southend News Network is a satirical site pretending to be a news organisation by the English coast in Southend. They have a disclaimer on their about page that reads (in part):

Southend News Network was originally started in October 2015 with no real aims or objectives in mind other than to add a satirical/spoof-like touch to issues that people are passionate about in Southend On Sea. Above all else, SNN is all about having the occasional 'dig' at the powers that be, as well a slightly bigger and more frequent 'dig' at certain elements of local media!

Several of their stories have been mistaken for real news in the past and the site was recognized by the local authorities as an "official news outlet".

We wrote about southendnewsnetwork.net before, these are our most recent articles that mention the site:

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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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