My Mom Fell for Instagram “Hoax”

My mother sent Instagram’s “viral hoax” in my families group chat in fear of what will happen with the content on our Instagram accounts. She sent us the photo that explained that “tomorrow starts the new Instagram rule where they can use your photos.” My mom even re-posted it herself, until my siblings and I told her to take it down. I even contemplated re-posting it until I came to the consensus that it was most likely not real.

These viral hoaxes are fear-provoking and believable within its context.  A professor at Syracuse University explains that we are not stupid because we believe it, these hoax’s stick due to the way people process information. She explains, “We often make snap decisions based on how the information adheres with our existing worldviews.” People create these viral hoax’s to gain attention, and sometimes it works. The actual “hoax” itself is harmless; however, it becomes harmful when people fall into the trap. It is especially detrimental when celebrities with large followings and top media cover the issue because it becomes believable and “real”. An example of a recent viral hoax is the “Momo Challenge”. An image of a possessed and terrifying chicken lady pops up in a game that targets children to promotes violence. YouTube commented on the issue:

This hoax led parents in fear of the child’s online activity. Although it has never proven that this hoax increased violence in children, I believe it is incredibly harmful, much like most hoaxes.

6 thoughts on “My Mom Fell for Instagram “Hoax”

  1. Sydney,
    The title of this immediately drew me in because like you, my mom often falls victim to viral hoaxes on the internet (it seems that parents are especially susceptible to these hoaxes). I really like how you included a quote from a major social media site like Youtube to highlight how hoaxes are all over the internet, and how social media platforms are forced to address them in order to help stop them, as well as protect their reputation. It is really interesting to read about why we fall for these hoaxes, and how easy they are spread. Great read!

  2. The title of your post caught my eye, as my mom is a social media lover and tends to believe the majority of the information she reads on the internet. This is a great example of showing how these hoaxes impact people IRL. I personally did not hear or see anything of this Instagram hoax before our class, so it was interesting to read that you first heard about it through your mom. It is also nice to see that my mom is not the only one to fall for social media gossip and is not the only mom that forwards her children articles regarding social media and our generation!

  3. Hi Sydney!

    Your blog post title caught my eye when I was scrolling through WordPress. I too have a mom who is active on social media so I resonated with you before even reading the post! I really enjoyed reading your blog post because I was able to think about other hoaxes, for example, the hoax on Youtube. I also enjoyed the tweet you embedded because the video shows how the Instagram hoax went as far as local news channels. Overall I think you executed this blog post really well by being both informative and personable by relating it to your own experience.

    -Dani Shoflick

  4. Sydney- I was immediately intrigued by your blog post because of it’s first line introduction. My mom sends me these things all the time, also. I have even caught her sharing the hoaxes on her social medias, just as you did with your mom. I also mentioned Momo in my blog post, so it was interesting to see your personal take on the same topic. I really enjoyed reading your blog!

  5. Hi Sydney!

    I was immediately drawn to your post based on the title. This is something my mom would also do, and it is scary to think that so many people in our parents’ generation and older are falling for these hoaxes.

    You did a great job tying in the ‘Momo’ hoax/meme that was tormenting so many kids on the internet. This is an example of a hoax gone way to far, to the point of terrorizing innocent children. I completely agree that hoaxes such as ‘Momo’ can be incredibly harmful to children and need to be prevented.

    Sari Kamp

  6. Great post Sydney! I really appreciate that you noted that most actual hoaxes are not harmful; rather, hoaxes become problematic when people believe them and spread them causing serious social media disruption. You feature an awesome example with the “Momo Challenge.” This image undoubtedly encourages violence and demonstrates how hoaxes can go haywire. I also love the first video you included. It’s short, sweet, and immediately engaged me to your post.

Leave a Reply