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False: Inuit elders issue warning to NASA and the world

There is currently a fake story circulating on social media, claiming basically climate change is caused by something else.


Edited: 2017-02-15 23:34

This article appears to have circulated for years, dating back as far as 2014. Years before that, apparently a different, or very similar version was going around as an e-mail spam.

There are a number of problems with the article, which strongly indicate that it is fake. Never mind for now that the authors are actually blatantly lying, which is very obvious to tell if you know just a little about the subject.

There is an excellent article on the claim from 2007: Tilt!

But instead of wasting time, and energy researching, thinking about, or commenting on every claim posted on social media, you can simply report it and let someone else deal with it.

Do not comment on the post, saying it is fake. Instead simply report it as fake to Facebook, and let them deal with it. You don't want to ruin your relationship with friends. Some people might not like that you disprove them, and it can be emotionally disturbing for both of you. Internet junk is simply not worth the headache or heartache it is causing.

Maybe the authors of all these recent fake stories are unaware of the damage it can cause. Possibly, they are simply trying to earn easy money on ads, without thinking about the consequences.

How to easily tell when a story is junk

You can often tell fairly fast if a story is fake, simply by looking at the domain name hosting the article. Most users likely won't be able to tell by this alone, but those who are familiar with some of the official sites, on a given subject, usually will.

If you can't tell from the domain alone, the below list are usually strong signals:

  1. Link title sensational (clickbait marketing trick).
  2. Standard wordpress (or other easy-to-setup CMS) site with basic layout.
  3. Unknown personal website or blog, and / or the author or owner is anonymous.
  4. Article mainly consist of short paragraphs with unfounded claims, and no sources.
  5. Searching for the main claim in Google. I.e.: "inout elders nasa" gives low quality results.

In this case, if you do a search for "inout elders nasa", one of the first results will be Impacts of a Warming Arctic

This NASA article basically states the opposite of what is being claimed in the "Inuit elders warning..." article. NASA states that the Inuit in the region are noticing the effects of climate change. The fake article claims that climate change is caused by an undocumented shifting earth.