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Hoax Alert

Fake News: Colin Kaepernick NOT Arrested In Massive $200k Drug Bust

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Mon, 17 Dec 2018 10:33:21 Z)

Was Colin Kaepernick arrested in a $200k drug bust? No, that's not true. The story was published by a liberal satire website that tries to educate gullible Trump supporters and Republicans about the need to actually click and read links before sharing or liking them in order to avoid being embarrassed by fans of the site later. All the events described in the article are not real.

The story originated from an article published on December 17, 2018 titled "BREAKING: Colin Kaepernick Arrested In Massive $200k Drug Bust" (archived here) which opened:

Liberal hero Colin Kaepernick loves to "kneel" when he's making a scene about our "racist" country. But we're pretty sure he didn't like being forced to kneel by the Las Vegas police on Sunday.

Kaepernick was arrested at the home of Marvin "Big G" Kirkpatrick after a neighbor called in a tip about "loud music and possible drug activity." Police responded at 8:67 PM according to the Las Vegas Reporter. When they knocked at the door, someone inside was heard yelling "Oh **** it's the cops! Hide the drugs!"

Screenshot of https://wearethellod.com/click-the-links-racists/

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail, guaranteeing some would like and share it in their excitement without reading it first:

BREAKING: Colin Kaepernick Arrested In Massive $200k Drug Bust

Liberal hero Colin Kaepernick loves to "kneel" when he's making a scene about our "racist" country. But we're pretty sure he didn't like being forced to kn...

Had they done so they would have seen several hints the story was false, for example the phrase "Information you probably shouldn't trust" in the site header and the category the post was published under ("SATIRICAL SCANDALS THAT SOUND REAL").

The photo illustrating the article doesn't even show Kaepernick but a protester being arrested in 2017 in St. Louis:

Lawsuits filed over St. Louis police 'kettling' practice

ST. LOUIS (AP) - More than a dozen people arrested in a police "kettle" during a 2017 protest in St. Louis are suing the city, police officers and their supervisors, alleging they were roughed up, pepper sprayed and illegally detained. Federal lawsuits were filed Monday, a year to the day after the Sept.

Links in the story that supposedly go to news articles related to the events instead go to articles mocking conservatives and conservative beliefs.

This is not the first time the site uses Kaepernick in a story with a similar purpose, only last week it published one accusing him of domestic violence:

Fake News: Colin Kaepernick NOT Arrested For Domestic Violence | Lead Stories

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below. Was Colin Kaepernick arrested on a domestic violence charge? No, that's not true: the story was put out by a liberal satire website that uses fake stories to teach gullible Trump supporters and conservatives not to blindly share and like stories on the internet without actually reading them first.

The site comes with a clear satire disclaimer at the bottom of each article:

sat·ire ~ˈsaˌtī(ə)r
noun
the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, OR ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
If you disagree with the definition of satire or have decided it is synonymous with "comedy," you should really just move along.

The owner and main writer of the site is self-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has made it his full time job to troll gullible conservatives and Trump supporters into liking and sharing his articles. He runs several other websites, including potatriotpost.us, dailyworldupdate.us and nofakenewsonline.us. Sometimes he is also known under his nickname "Busta Troll". A second man working on the sites is John Prager as revealed in this earlier story we wrote.

Articles from Blair's sites frequently get copied by "real" fake news sites who often omit the satire disclaimer and any other hints the stories are fake. Blair has tried to get these sites shut down in the past but new ones keep cropping up and he keeps knocking them down.

Blair and his operation were profiled by the Washington Post on November 17, 2018 by Eli Saslow:

'Nothing on this page is real': How lies become truth in online America

November 17 The only light in the house came from the glow of three computer monitors, and Christopher Blair, 46, sat down at a keyboard and started to type. His wife had left for work and his children were on their way to school, but waiting online was his other community, an unreality where nothing was exactly as it seemed.

If you are interested in learning more about Blair and the history of his sites, here is something to get you started:

The Ultimate Christopher Blair and America's Last Line of Defense Reading List | Lead Stories

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below. Yesterday Eli Saslow at the Washington Post wrote a fantastic article about Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has been trolling conservatives and Trump supporters online for years and occasionally even made a living out of it.

If you see one of his stories on a site that does not contain a satire disclaimer, assume it is fake news. If you do see the satire disclaimer it is of course also fake news.

NewsGuard, a company that uses trained journalist to rank the reliability of websites, describes wearethellod.com as:

A site that publishes false stories and hoaxes that are often mistaken for real news, part of a network named America's Last Line of Defense run by hoax perpetrator Christopher Blair.

According to NewsGuard the site does not maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability. Read their full assessment here.

We wrote about wearethellod.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

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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