There is so much that is shared on the internet and now that we are in the era (or should I say "error"?) of fake news, I thought that I would set the record straight and give you a few tips on spotting the fakes.

I was prompted to write this because of an article on Now8news.com about Dasani bottled water, which stated that there was a parasite found in their water bottles. This gross, clear wormy looking icky thing with a silver eye. UGH! They had a picture of it and some seemingly legit facts like:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has shut down the manufacturing facility and issued a major recall on the brand. Do not drink this water! The FDA is recommending that if you have no choice but to consume the water, you MUST boil the water first to kill the parasite. Otherwise, it will host itself in your stomach lining and intestine and breed offsprings.

So, I'll admit, before I was able to check on this myself, I steered clear of Dasani water. Then I went to snopes.com to see if this was true. Nope! But how many people had believed that story?

Coca-Cola did not issue a recall on Dasani products for any reason in April 2016 and noted in a statement that: “The source of this false and inflammatory information about our brand is a hoax news website. There is no recall of Dasani being conducted in the U.S.” The Food and Drug Administration similarly said they were not aware of any current recalls or disease outbreaks associated with Dasani water.

The picture of that gross, clear wormy looking icky thing with a silver eye was not even a parasite but an eel larva better known as Leptocephalus to their friends. Still extremely upsetting if found in bottled water but Snopes.com says it was actually a picture from Mie Prefecture Fisheries Research Institute and not in the bottled water at all.

What can we do to protect ourselves from fake news?

  1. Be smart. First of all, if there was any truth to this story and this affected "several thousand" bottles of water and "several hundred" people were hospitalized, there would be a news frenzy about it and it wouldn't just be limited to one website that you've never heard about. Believe me, CNN, FOX, CBS etc would be all over that story.
  2. Check the source. If you do hear something, before you share, make sure.
  3. Snopes.com is such a great source. This is what they do, they check on stuff.

There's so much stufff out there and way too easy to pass something off as truth when it isn't.