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Social Media: The Problems It Brings

edited July 2014 in News & Politics
Recently there was a video that was posted online about a shark in lake Ontario. here it is.

Cool it's a video, proof right? Well, nope.
It's not proof.

this is an article that reported the story as well.

Now for that delayed does of reality
Is this a shark in Lake Ontario? No, it’s a PR stunt

By David Shum Global News

TORONTO – The video begins harmlessly, with several people fishing off a dock. Then a head pops out of the water.

An enhanced close-up reveals a pointed nose and rows of sharp teeth.

The 90-second video of what its creators claim is a shark in Lake Ontario is making the rounds on social media. But it was all hype: the Discovery Channel released a press release Wednesday afternoon confirming the video was fake and part of a promotional campaign for Shark Week.

But the video sparked a rumour that a bull shark was indeed lurking in Lake Ontario.

Waitress Erin Whalen told the National Post she has seen the creature near the docks and vows not to let her children near the water.

According to National Geographic’s website, Bull sharks generally grow to about 7.5 feet long and weigh up to 285 pounds.

While bull sharks are commonly found along coastlines, bays and harbours, they occasionally frequent freshwater rivers.

“Bull sharks have special physiological adaptations that enable them to live in fresh water,” National Geographic’s profile reads. “Their kidneys recycle the salt within their bodies and special glands, located near their tails, also aid in salt retention.”

Natural Resources Minister Bill Mauro tried to remain serious amid jokes from reporters at Queen’s Park about the shark. He told people to stay safe and report any sightings.

“Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…Anyway, listen; it is potentially a very serious situation,” he said. “If it is in fact a shark in Lake Ontario, we need to know about it, the public needs to be advised, we need to take whatever steps we can to address the issue.”

Mauro said the ministry doesn’t have anyone actively searching for the alleged shark.

He did, however, say he hopes the animal is Ontario’s version of the Loch Ness Monster.

The speculation of a shark in Lake Ontario has at least created a buzz around Wolfe Island and also spawned its own Twitter account.

These kind of stories are kind of going on a rampage in social media right now. This isn't the only one. There are tons. What one needs to be more wary about is when these types of stories can be used to slander people, countries etc.


  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    ^ Yeah, I posted the original vid two days ago I think, and it turned out to be a complete marketing stunt.
  • DoosDoos Centurion
    War of the Worlds in its original 1968 radio broadcast caused a bit of a panic and had people fleeing their homes because it was presented as a news broadcast. It had a disclaimer at the beginning but people tuning in mid way did not hear it.

    The more I read, the more I see and the more I deal with news of any type the more I know not to react to it before digging deeper.

    This is something I'm getting better at but I'm still guilty of reading a headline and having a gut reaction.

    This is what media groups aim for, the gut, not the brain. Use your brain more than your gut and you'll do fine.

    Especially if you're getting involved with world news.
  • Law212Law212 Centurion
    People believe anything. And how are you surprised that people believed there was a shark in lake Ontario? compared to "god" the shark story is far more believable.

    Its honestly pretty funny that people are all "pfft youre stupid for believing the shark "story, yet so many people believe that higher power watching down on them from the sky.

    I don't want to get into religion, just using "god" as an example of how the shark story is pretty believable compared to the complete crazy shit people believe in.
  • War of the Worlds was exactly what I thought of when I read Kay's post.
  • Law212Law212 Centurion
    Social media brings more problems than just false information that people believe. I read many stories of how it ruins relationships and costs people their jobs.
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    ... costs people their jobs.
    That's usually because the poster is being stupid though. Don't post shit about work to social media. Period.
  • Law212Law212 Centurion
    ya but people still do it.

    Were talking about believing stupid things.... its the same as being stupid and posting about work , or trying to hook up with your girlfriends friends on facebook. People still try it.

    all those things require some level of stupid.
  • Social media brings more problems than just false information that people believe. I read many stories of how it ruins relationships and costs people their jobs.
    it is a constant problem with everything. People were hopefully at least suspended for this incident.

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