By The Associated Press
A roundup of some of the most popular but completely untrue stories and visuals of the week. None of these is legit, even though they were shared widely on social media. The Associated Press checked these out. Here are the real facts:
NOT REAL NEWS: Synagogue shooting victim was not a Holocaust survivor
THE FACTS: Rose Mallinger, who died at age 97 after being shot at her Pittsburgh synagogue while worshipping Saturday, was not a Holocaust survivor, as widely reported online. Born in the early 1920s, Mallinger was alive during the Holocaust, but family members and the congregation’s rabbi said she was not among European Jews persecuted by Nazi Germans, who were responsible for the mass murder of millions of Jews during World War II. The photo attached to the post also is incorrect. A search of photos online revealed the woman in the photo to be Ata Kando, a Hungarian-Dutch photographer, not Mallinger.
NOT REAL NEWS: Actress Amy Schumer not pictured tearing up doll in horror shoot
THE FACTS: An image circulating online that shows Schumer splattered with blood and tearing a doll apart was doctored. The photo is paired with a quote falsely attributed to Schumer: “Fetuses aren’t people and have no right (sic), if you can’t get an abortion just get rid of it when is (sic) born.” Canadian photographer Melissa Trotter told the AP that she took the original photograph earlier this year. In the doctored photo, Schumer’s face was substituted for that of the original model. “The shoot was never about abortion or any sort of political commentary,” said Trotter, whose shoots are typically horror themed.
NOT REAL NEWS: American Red Cross not providing tents to caravan headed to U.S.-Mexico border
THE FACTS: Tents given to members of the migrant caravan working its way to the U.S. border were supplied by the Guatemalan Red Cross, Honduran Red Cross and Mexican Red Cross organizations, but not the American Red Cross. A tent featured in one of the migrant photos used to make the false claim has the Red Cross symbol and is labeled with the words “Cruz Roja Mexicana,” which translates into Mexican Red Cross. “In line with Red Cross fundamental principles, the Guatemalan Red Cross, Honduran Red Cross, and Mexican Red Cross have been providing aid such as medical care, drinking water, and family reconnection services to migrants walking through Central America and Mexico,” The American Red Cross said in a statement.
NOT REAL NEWS: Monster beverage company not selling caffeinated ham
THE FACTS: A California-based beverage company is not selling caffeinated “energy” ham, despite an image circulating widely on social media. A digitally altered photo of a package that appeared to contain ham created by Monster Energy Company is the handiwork of Adam Padilla, or “adam.the.creator,” an internet personality known for creating false and satirical images. Padilla first shared the image on Instagram on Oct. 30 with his social media handle included as a watermark on the bottom left of the packaging. “Yes I created the image,” Padilla said in a text message to the AP. “I digitally manipulated the package design in Adobe Photoshop as part of my daily meme creation.” Michael Sitrick, a spokesman for Monster, also told the AP that “Monster does not sell ‘energy’ or any ham for that matter.
This is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing effort to fact-check misinformation that is shared widely online, including work with Facebook to identify and reduce the circulation of false stories on the platform.
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