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Fake News: Frauds and Fakes on the Internet

There are many hoaxes on the Internet Here are some web sites which appear to be real, but are not. There is also a page with information on checking out sites, and criteria for evaluating web sites.

News Sites (Parodies)

The Antiviral Guide to the Worst Hoaxers

A compilation of "fake" news sites (but without links to the sites). It includes some of the more obscure sources.

The Onion

The Onion has been around for years, in print and now in digital formats. Created to look like a real news site, it features satire and spoofs. Enjoy reading it, but don't use it for facts!

The Borowitz Report

Another spoof or parody news site, The Borowitz Report looks real only until you start reading the headlines.


Pretty much a British equivalent of The Onion...

The Spoof: spoof news headlines, parody and political satire stories

Always there with the funniest spoof headlines

The Beaverton - North America's Trusted Source of News

Kinda like The Onion for Canada... #eh

The National Report

Self proclaimed as "America's #1 Independent News Source" it posts fictional articles related to world events.

The Daily Mash

The Daily Mash is a satirical website which publishes spoof articles, i.e. it is all made-up and is not intended, in any way whatsoever, to be taken as factual.

The Plantain

"The Plantain is Miami's preeminent satirical news outlet."

News Thump

"NewsThump is a satirical and spoof news website, taking a daily swipe at current affairs from the UK and around the world. It is published and owned by Thump Publishing Limited. ... It is our stated aim to mock absolutely everyone, eventually. ... We are not afraid to skip a few steps like checking facts or corroborating sources, and we never let the truth ruin a funny story (it’s much easier just to make everything up). So, for clarification – If you read a story on here, then you are NOT supposed to believe it. It has been completely made up purely for entertainment purposes. It’s also worth noting that we regularly use rude words and stuff, so you need to be 18 to be reading this."

News shows

  • The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Comedy Central)
    American late-night talk and news satire television program. It airs each Monday through Thursday on Comedy Central. The half-hour-long show premiered on July 21, 1996, and was hosted by Craig Kilborn until December 1998. Jon Stewart took over as host in January 1999. On February 10, 2015, Stewart announced that he would leave the show; his final broadcast is scheduled to air on August 6, 2015. Trevor Noah, a South African comedian who joined The Daily Show as a freshman contributor in December 2014, was named Stewart's successor and began his tenure on September 28, 2015.


  • Red Eye (Fox News)
    Red Eye was an American late-night/early-morning satirical talk show on the Fox News Channel, airing at 3:00 am ET Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00 pm Saturday, and 2:00 am Sunday. The show featured panelists and guests discussing the latest news in politics, pop culture, entertainment, business, sports, and religion. Gutfeld left the show in early March 2015, with Tom Shillue taking over on June 22, 2015. The show was canceled by Fox News in 2017, with the final episode airing on April 7 of that year. Video clips still available.


  • The Colbert Report (Comedy Central)
    The Colbert Report was an American late-night talk and news satire television program hosted by Stephen Colbert that aired on Comedy Central from October 17, 2005 to December 18, 2014 for 1,447 episodes. Clips and more still available.

Wikipedia: List of satirical news websites

Additional news satire sites can be found in the above list.

Wikipedia: News Satire

The Wikipedia article on news satire and news satire web sites.


Thanks to these libraries whose content I have re-purposed:

Washington State University Libraries - Guides,

Snopes' Field Guide to Fake News Sites and Hoax Purveyors

In January 2016, Snopes published a list (with commentary) of fake news/hoax sites. It is periodically updated, check the date next to the by-line, so in spite of the date in the link, it has been updated into 2017.

False, Misleading, Clickbait-y, and Satirical “News” Sources

Melissa Zimdars, Assistant Professor of Communication at Merrimac College has created a Google document which lists fake, false, regularly misleading, and otherwise questionable “news” organizations that are commonly shared on social media sites.

Real or Satire

Type in a URL (web address), and these folks will tell you if it is legitimate:

Regional Parody Sites

Neutral Ground News

Launched in 2014, Neutral Ground News is a satirical online entertainment publication that focuses primarily on the people, places and things in the city of New Orleans and surrounding areas. "This website is targeted toward an immature audience and is not intended for readers under 18 years of age.

"Neutral Ground News is comprised of individual posts, some taken from or inspired by real news events but the stories are almost entirely works of complete fiction. This site is a source of parody, satire, and humor and is for entertainment purposes only.

The Red Shtick

"The Red Shtick is the digital offspring (some might say “bastard child”) of Red Shtick Magazine, which served as the only print satirical publication in Louisiana’s capital city for 8½ years.

"Like its progenitor, The Red Shtick likes to think of itself as a bold and engaging source of satire and irreverent humor. And while The Red Shtick is completely digital and subsequently limited only by the scope of the worldwide web, it – like its printed precursor – has a tendency to focus on happenings in Baton Rouge and the rest of South Louisiana."

Are these real?

  • Save the Tree Octopus
  • Dog Island

This parody site was created by a college class as part of an assignment looking at how reader comments can influence opinion. It is particularly interesting because the site was presented as a reference source for a political group against violent videogames, meaning that they were fooled into believing the site was a valid source! [Current link from the Internet Wayback Machine (]

This site spoofs Wikipedia, and does it well.

Ninja Burger will deliver their delicious hot burgers to you within 30 minutes of calling, or they'll commit seppuku. Or, look up their locations by zipcode and see if there is a Ninja Burger near you.

Looking for an animal to love and cuddle as your new favorite pet? Or do you need a cute bunny for a rabbit stew? This site serves both needs! Be sure to click on the Zoo BBQ link on this site and read the "Success Stories."

Yoga Kitty will help you cat be happier. The site includes instructive videos featuring a cat model. Whoever made this site must have a lot of time on their hands, because there are MANY of these little cat yoga vids!

All About Explorers was developed by a group of teachers as a means of teaching students about the Internet. Although the Internet can be a tremendous resource for gathering information about a topic, we found that students often did not have the skills to discern useful information from worthless data.

From 1869 to 1975, the Federal Vampire & Zombie Agency (FVZA), also known as "the Vanguard," was responsible for controlling the nation's vampire and zombie populations while overseeing scientific research into the undead. This site is a tribute to the men and women who served in the FVZA, especially the over 4000 Agents who lost their lives fighting to keep our country safe. In addition to paying tribute to the FVZA, this site hopes to call attention to dangerous research being done at the Santa Rosa Institute: research that runs the risk of bringing back a scourge of vampires worse than any before.