Just Because It's Trending Doesn't Mean It's True
Hoax Alert

Fake News: Post Malone Did NOT Die From Ligma

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 16 Sep 2018 08:18:52 Z)

Did rapper Post Malone die from "Ligma"? No, that's not true: some joker uploaded a fake story to a prank generator website which uses a domain name that is easily confused with CBS News claiming the singer passed away. None of it is real, not even the disease.

The story originated from an article published on September 16, 2018 at cbsnews.us (not cbsnews.com) titled "Post Malone dies from Ligma" (archived here) which opened:

Austin Richard Post (bon July 4, 1995), known professionally as Post Malone, was an American rapper, singer, songwriter and record producer.

Screenshot of https://cbsnews.us/2018/09/15/Post-Malone-dies-from-Ligma/0UG9zdCBNYWxvbmUgZGllcyBmcm9tIExpZ21h.QXVzdGluIFJpY2hhcmQgUG9zdCAoYm9uIEp1bHkgNCwgMTk5NSksIGtub3duIHByb2Zlc3Npb25hbGx5IGFzIFBvc3QgTWFsb25lLCB3YXMgYW4gQW1lcmljYW4gcmFwcGVyLCBzaW5nZXIsIHNvbmd3cml0ZXIgYW5kIHJlY29yZCBwcm9kdWNlci4=.aHR0cHM6Ly9mYXJtNS5zdGF0aWNmbGlja3IuY29tLzQxOTgvMzU1NTc1NzUzNjZfZTk1ZjhkYmYyYV96LmpwZw==

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail so they might have thought it was an actual CBS News article:

Post Malone dies from Ligma

Austin Richard Post (bon July 4, 1995), known professionally as Post Malone, was an American rapper, singer, songwriter and record producer.

But there is no disease named "Ligma": it was a fictional ailment made up as part of an internet joke:


Ligma is a fictional disease associated with a death hoax orchestrated by Instagram user ninja_hater that claimed Fortnite streamer Ninja had passed away after contracting the disease. The intention of this joke was to prompt concerned fans to ask what Ligma is, to which participants in the hoax would respond with "ligma balls" ("lick my balls"), a joke setup similar to Deez Nuts and Updog.

The site where the hoax was published is part of a network of prank websites centered around thefakenewsgenerator.com that allow anyone to create a realistic looking fake news article. The network offers a selection of misleading domain names that can be used to make it look like an article came from real news websites such as CBS News, Associated Press or The New York Times. Each hoax article comes with following disclaimer at the top of the page:

You clicked this fake news story. Now make your own!

We wrote about cbsnews.us 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

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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