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Fox News Reprints Onion Article, Confuses Readers Who Don’t Follow Links

Fox News Reprints Onion Article, Confuses Readers Who Don’t Follow Links

It’s often been joked about that the satire site “The Onion” has some of the best reporting there is (and, sadly, sometimes appears to have a crystal ball when it comes to future stories).  But Fox News readers are having a little trouble distinguishing fact from satire when the site ran an Onion article without a prominent note that the piece was satire.

Via Mediaite:

Yes, the Fox Nation editors were apparently so enamored with an Onion piece from today entitled “Frustrated Obama Sends Nation Rambling 75,000-Word E-Mail” that they reposted the first two paragraphs in their culture section with nary a sign as to its fictional nature. The only clue that this wasn’t real (besides a quick peek at your inbox to confirm that Barack Obama hasn’t been emailing you) was a link at the bottom instructing readers to go to for the real story. This tiny link was, unfortunately, not enough for the vast majority of FN readers. At least, that’s the way it seems from the comments section.

Here’s a sampling:

“If this story is correct, that he did send out this email, it is very concerning about his current state of mental health. I am surprised he would be allowed to send something like this out and if he is not functioning very well why there isn’t some attention being paid to his current state.”

“Hey, you fraud: Get out. Your presidency is an affront to the exceptionalism of America. Pathetic loser.”


In fact, at the time of this post’s writing, you have to scroll through 20 comments to find someone who realizes the story’s fake. Five comments below that there’s actually someone (sarcastically?) saying they emailed The Onion for confirmation on the story.

I’m not sure how anyone could miss it was satire.  After all, if the president were to send the country an email, I’d expect it to be 200,000 words long at least.


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6:09AM PST on Jan 29, 2011

You said it, Bart V.
Liberals rock. All progress in this country has come because of the progressive legislation put forth for PEOPLE, not corporations.

7:42PM PST on Dec 31, 2010

Conservatives miss the similarity between the words 'liberal' & 'liberty'. True conservatives from the past, like Barry Goldwater; would be disgusted at what claims to be conservative today. Liberals got women the vote, created Social security & lifted millions of elderly out of poverty, ended segregation, & created Medicare, the civil Rights Act & the Voting Rights Act. Conservatives opposed every one of these things.

5:03PM PST on Dec 30, 2010

Yay for the Onion for punking FoxNews fans. It's sad, but I can't stop laughing.

4:48AM PST on Dec 30, 2010

"I'd expect it to be 200,000 words long at least"

nicely played!

7:10AM PST on Dec 13, 2010

Fox news- they manipulate, distort, and outright lie what did you expect? Sadly a frightening number of people take this propaganda as gospel.

1:45AM PST on Dec 5, 2010

Fox News & The Onion are pretty much the same though the Onion has higher production values.

8:42AM PST on Dec 3, 2010

Not an oxymoron, just a complete moron.

8:10AM PST on Dec 3, 2010

But isn't Fox News an oxymoron?

4:07PM PST on Dec 1, 2010

Too funny!

10:01AM PST on Dec 1, 2010

hilarious, but then i have to admit to falling for the april fools' story a few years back about GOP operatives organising/promoting conservative rap groups, hehe.. real egg on my face there - i followed it up fruitlessly for like a year before noticing the date on the original article, which i'd come upon after the fact - but it sounded so like Rove, and this was in his heyday.. HEY man, if they can get to Abbie Hoffman they can get to anyone!!

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