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Hoax Alert

Fake News: Louisville, Kentucky NOT Having Emergency Outbreak Of Deadly Virus

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 08 Jul 2018 21:41:16 Z)

Is there an outbreak going on of the hr3211 virus in Louisville, Kentucky? No, that's not real: a story that claimed there was such an outbreak was made up by some joker who posted it on a prank website where it fooled almost 20.000 people into sharing it despite not being true and containing tons of spelling mistakes.

The story originated from an article published via React365 on July 8, 2018 titled "Louisville ky having emergency outbreak deadly virus" (archived here) which read in full:

The university of louisville hospital has already confirmed 16 deaths within the past 8 hours from a rare strain of hr3211virus Dr hemiln head of internal medicine said this could very will be the biggest outbreak we have ever seen in the united states he warned if you have any symptoms headaches blurred vision bleaking from the ears or rectal area or ringing in your ears to go inside and stay there till medical help arrives again stay indoors do not come in contact with anyone it is known to be spread by airborne go to center for diseases control for further information and atay up to date on wlky for further details as we learn more about This deadly disiease

Screenshot of http://www.react365.com/5b4172e9d29f6/louisville-ky-having-emergency-outbreak-deadly-virus.html

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:

Louisville ky having emergency outbreak deadly virus

The university of louisville hospital has already confirmed 16 deaths within the past 8 hours from a rare strain of hr3211virus Dr hemiln head of internal medicine said this could very will be the biggest outbreak we have ever seen in the united states he warned if you have any symptoms headaches blurred vision bleaking from the ears or rectal area or ringing in your ears to go inside and stay there till medical help arrives again stay indoors do not come in contact with anyone it is known to be spread by airborne go to center for diseases control for further information and atay up to date on wlky for further details as we learn more about This deadly disiease

As far as we've been able to determine, no "hr3211 virus" exists and "Dr hemiln" is not a real person either. The only online references to them is the hoax article.

React365 is a prank website where users can submit their own headline, description and photo to create realistic looking prank news articles.

react365.jpg

Users don't even need to upload their own image, there is a built-in search function that will pull an appropriate image from Google image search.

All stories carry following disclaimer at the bottom of the page:

This website is an entertainment website, jokes are created by users. These are humourous jokes, fantasy, fictional, that should not be seriously taken or as a source of information.

The site is part of a larger network of prank sites all using the same basic layout but sometimes in different languages. It appears to be run by a Belgian company named Mediavibes or Media Vibes which is managed by a man named Nicolas Gouriou according to registration records.

So don't fall for this prank now that we've warned you about it!

We wrote about react365.com before, here 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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About Lead Stories

Lead Stories uses the Trendolizer™ engine to detect the most trending stories from known fake news, satire and prank websites and tries to debunk them as fast as possible. Read more about how we work and how we select stories to check here.

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