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Hoax Alert

Fake News: Minnesota NOT Expected To Get 16 Inches Of Snowfall Within The Next Week

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Thu, 20 Sep 2018 17:01:58 Z)

Are there sixteen inches of snow expected in Minnesota within the next week? No, that's not true: the story was created by some prankster who used a website where anyone can upload a story. The site has a confusing domain name that makes many people believe it is CBS News but it isn't. No snow is expected in Minnesota.

The story originated from an article published on cbsnews.us (not cbsnews.com) on September 20, 2018 titled "Minnesota expected to get 16 inches of snowfall within the next week! " (archived here) which opened:

Meteorologists across the metro are trying to find out how this potential snowfall is even possible right now. Minnesota residents are extremely upset about this but so the fuck what, deal with it.

Screenshot of http://cbsnews.us/2018/09/20/Minnesota-expected-to-get-16-inches-of-snowfall-within-the-next-week-/0TWlubmVzb3RhIGV4cGVjdGVkIHRvIGdldCAxNiBpbmNoZXMgb2Ygc25vd2ZhbGwgd2l0aGluIHRoZSBuZXh0IHdlZWshICA=.TWV0ZW9yb2xvZ2lzdHMgYWNyb3NzIHRoZSBtZXRybyBhcmUgdHJ5aW5nIHRvIGZpbmQgb3V0IGhvdyB0aGlzIHBvdGVudGlhbCBzbm93ZmFsbCBpcyBldmVuIHBvc3NpYmxlIHJpZ2h0IG5vdy4gTWlubmVzb3RhIHJlc2lkZW50cyBhcmUgZXh0cmVtZWx5IHVwc2V0IGFib3V0IHRoaXMgYnV0IHNvIHRoZSBmdWNrIHdoYXQsIGRlYWwgd2l0aCBpdC4g.aHR0cHM6Ly9mYXJtNi5zdGF0aWNmbGlja3IuY29tLzUyMDQvNTMzMjg3OTY4Ml9iZDQwMjgzMGU4X3ouanBn

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

Minnesota expected to get 16 inches of snowfall within the next week!

Meteorologists across the metro are trying to find out how this potential snowfall is even possible right now. Minnesota residents are extremely upset about this but so the fuck what, deal with it.

However, the actual weather forecast for Minnesota does not show any snow for the next ten days:

Minneapolis, MN 10-Day Weather Forecast - The Weather Channel | Weather.com

Be prepared with the most accurate 10-day forecast for Minneapolis, MN with highs, lows, chance of precipitation from The Weather Channel and Weather.com

The site 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!

The site is the brainchild of Justin Hook and he was interviewed by The Daily Dot about it:

This fake news generator is a head-turning troll machine

Fake news is still a sensitive subject. Nearly 70 percent of people were concerned about the credibility of the news and where it comes from, according to a 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer, CNBC reports. People often expressed their concerns about fake news being used as a weapon to trick innocent people on the internet.

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
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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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