Fans of Irish comedian Dara O Briain must have been heartbroken when they read he died in a car crash. According to Mega News 360, the TV host and stand up was on his way back from a "showbiz" in Dublin when his car hit a pot hole, destroying a tire and sending his vehicle into a ditch. The article even had a photo of wrecked car in a ravine.
The only problem? O Briain was actually alive and well in Australia when his fans saw the article. Also, the photo wasn't his car, and there aren't many ditches in the middle of Dublin.
It turns out the comedian had been the victim of a very common type of online hoax, where sites spread rumors a celebrity has died to atttract attention. All of this inspired him to tweet a very funny response to the rumors of his early death.
Apparently I'm dead. Huge if true. Another victim of those ravines in the middle of Dublin City. We must fill them in before others die too! https://t.co/5O2dWVealF— Dara Ó Briain (@daraobriain) April 5, 2017
The tweet read:
Apparently I'm dead. Huge if true. Another victim of those ravines in the middxle of Dublin City. We must fill them in before others die too!
O Briain wasn't the only celebrity who had been reported dead by Mega News 360. Other headlines on the website announce that Charlize Theron, John Cena, Hillary Clinton and even Queen Elizabeth II have all passed away - even though they're all still alive.
Of course the problem of fake news stories like these has been getting a lot of attention lately. Facebook has even made tips warning how to identify fake stories.
Another kind of news story to be on the lookout for involves celebrities whose cars break down in your town. While these stories aren't as scary as rumors that your favorite celebrity has passed away, they're still a hoax.
It's heartbreaking to find out that Brad Pitt's car didn't really break down in my small town, but at the same time I'm glad to know I didn't miss the chance to meet him!
Share this post if you've ever been tricked by a headline!