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Impostor headline designed to spread outrage circulates online

Did a mainstream Canadian news site report that experts say excluding pronouns from email signatures is bigoted? No, this headline is a fabrication. Let’s look at the facts.

A tweet reads “‘Experts” followed by three laughing emojis, and features an image supposedly showing an article published by Global News headlined, “Experts say not including pronouns in your bio, email signature, are a sign of bigotry.” The News Literacy Project added a label that says, “DOCTORED HEADLINE.”
The Canadian news organization Global News did not publish the headline shown in this tweet.
This piece of impostor content was created by altering the headline and featured image of an actual report published on Sept. 15 by Global News.

NewsLit takeaway

Impostor content is a type of misinformation that disguises itself as credible news. Fabricated headlines are often used to give baseless claims legitimacy and to malign mainstream news sources — often by creating absurd, offensive, overtly biased or outrageous headlines. The purpose is to create distrust of the news outlet and its coverage. The impostor headline also was designed to launder a false claim through a credible source and provoke outrage by citing gender equality issues.

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