News presenter Cheryl Fox was seen to be endorsing a slimming product in a fake interview and made the webpage appear like a write-up from Channel NewsAsia.
The webpage’s layout copies that of a genuine Channel NewsAsia online piece of writing, replicating the CNA’s badge in addition to the other design elements of its website. The said bogus webpage is hosted by All Deals Hub.
It incited numerous readers and users to contact Channel NewsAsia inquring if the pubished item was legitimate.
In a timely manner though, the post was removed after Channel NewsAsia flagged it to Facebook for a case of impersonation.
The article was also taken out after the broadcaster’s parent company, Mediacorp, filed a take-down notice against All Deals Hub.
In a statement, Mediacorp said, “The website and article are fake and make false claims. Ms Fox has neither used the product nor endorsed it. We do not take the abuse of the Channel NewsAsia brand and Ms Fox’s name lightly and are taking appropriate action.”
Fake news and counterfeit websites
Fake news websites intentionally circulate deceptions and misinformation to impel web traffic ignited by social media. These sites are different from news satire (which is witty and sometimes provide entertainment) as they deceive and occasionally profit from readers or viewers lack of caution. Many phony news sites are depicted to be derivatives of other news sites while some are examples of website parodies, planned to make visitors/users believe they are visiting reliable sources such as ABC News or MSNBC.
Based on a definition from The New York Times, “fake news” on the Internet refers to a fabricated article which was put together with the conscious motivation of duping readers/users and usually with the aim to profit through “clickbait.”
Fox is cast to several prime-time news programs, such as News 5 and Singapore Tonight, in addition to current affairs series Get Real and On the Red Dot.
Her name and photo was also utilized in a Facebook post by All Deals Hub which fallaciously declared that she had taken a “14-year hiatus” and daringly provided a link to the sham interview.