Privacy Scare Turns Out to be Fake!

How irresponsible! Someone, or some people, decided it’d be funny to pull a prank on Instagram users. This hoax falsely claimed that Instagram was going to make all of users’ photos and deleted messages made public. This fake news spread fast, as dozens of celebrities voiced their concerns and fell for the hoax.

But why is it that we fall for this baloney? Is it because we’re idiots? Or is it because it is so difficult to distinguish what’s fake on the internet? Professor Whitney Phillips from Syracuse University breaks it down, and she believes it’s not because we’re stupid. She claims that when faced with new information, we make snap decisions based off how we view the world. When these narratives fit into a coherent storyline that masses of people can believe, they’ll buy it. And sadly, sometimes, the narratives blow up on the internet.

The big question still remains. Why do people create these hoaxes? Some people may do it because they love to stir up feeds of those celebrities who have a major concern over this. Overall, internet hoaxes seem to be harmful more than anything. They cause people to go into a frenzy, and basically aim to attack certain groups or organizations. This Instagram hoax is a prime example. The group with the biggest concern over privacy are celebrities because there’s a much larger market for their private information. We’ve seen leaked private information ruin celebrities lives before, and this hoax only caused more panic.

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