CNN Runs False iReport That Incoming Asteroid May End Life On Planet

cnn.asteroidWhoops. This hoax will likely be an extinction-level event for whatever editor was asleep at the wheel over the long weekend.

The message is clear enough. It’s not a nice thing to contemplate the first day back at work after a three-day holiday weekend, but the good news is that it looks like the only impact story here is the fact that the cable news network has slammed the Earth with an enormous bolide of B.S.

The post is from iReports, which is apparently an experiment in citizen journalism. CNN lets random people with no qualifications post stories under the CNN banner. The asteroid scare illustrates the hazard of this approach.

Apparently ireporters don’t need to reveal their names. The asteroid report’s author has called himself, or herself, Marcus575. The story says the giant asteroid was spotted by a project called the Near-Earth Object Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE), which really exists. The date for the lethal encounter is March 25, 35, 2041.

According to Seth Borenstein, who tipped off the Tracker, the alarming post was up for 22 hours. By that time, he noted, it had had more than 200000 visits and 22000 shares. Helping boost the hits were tags: gaming, stocks, science, cyrus, beiber, Obama. If you Google CNN and asteroid you will find dozens of people have already reposted the “news” with comments and some concern.

via Oops. CNN runs bogus story saying asteroid has 1 in 2.04 odds of destroying Earth | Knight Science Journalism Program at MIT.

10 Comments on "CNN Runs False iReport That Incoming Asteroid May End Life On Planet"

  1. “…lets random people with no qualifications post stories…”

    They say that like it’s a bad thing.

  2. The fact that it said people commented on thr article with concern made me laugh. I so wish I could get the login information for CNNs editors that can post to their breaking news section on their website. I coulr have a lot of fun creating some mass panic since most of theit reader’s dont fact check.

    • Anarchy Pony | May 28, 2014 at 6:28 pm |

      I dunno, when I scoped it a lot of people seemed on top of the hoax because of the date.

      • I would make mine a little more believable if I would do it and I wouldn’t do it unless I could gain access to multiple MSM outlets cuz too many sheep just fact check by checking a different news site to see if they reported on it.

  3. The only thing that’s ending life on our planet is all the abject stupidity.

  4. a false report, courtesy of the same network that aired a computer generated image of a phony looking plane hitting a WTC on 9/11? what a surprise.

  5. CyberDurden | May 31, 2014 at 3:32 am |

    CNN should just post rants lifted from its readers’ comments.

Comments are closed.