Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Local Spotlight: Man Writes Fake News, Goes Viral

Written by: Emily Theobald and Abigail Pennington


Critics say Christopher Blair, a.k.a. Busta Troll, is inciting a divided country for personal gain.
YOON S. BYUN FOR THE BOSTON GLOBE
On Facebook there is an ever-growing amount of political content. Many individuals main news source is articles that pop up in their Facebook feed, and this is normally a good thing. Facebook makes news more accessible, but it has its drawbacks. Facebook is a website which can be easily manipulated by people who want to spread their agendas through falsehoods. People like Christopher Blair, a political blogger in our very own backyard.
Christopher Blair, 46, is a resident of North Waterboro, Maine. He is a lifelong Democrat and a former construction worker who now spends his time writing wildly inaccurate political articles from a conservative point of view, which he posts to his public Facebook group, America’s Last Line of Defense. On his page, he writes fake news articles to see how many people will believe anything they see. “The more extreme we become, the more people believe it,” states Blair in an article posted on The Washington Post. He is the mastermind behind articles such as “Did Malia Obama Found an Anti-Trump Website?”, “Did Principal Mamasai Mamakusa Expel Two Children for Wearing Crucifixes?” and “Has a Michigan ‘Sharia Zone’ Banned Bacon and Required the Wearing of Burqas in Public.
The page was first created as a joke during the 2016  presidential campaigns. It was a way for Blair and a few other Liberal friends to make fun of what they considered idiotic ideas coming from the far right of the political spectrum. Within the past two years of the page being public, stores such as “BREAKING: San Francisco Mayor Bans All Christmas Lights” were being spread and shared without people knowing it was all fake.

“Nothing on this page is real.” read one of the 14 disclaimers on Blair’s site but people still continued to spread the false information. “No matter how racist, how bigoted, how offensive, how obviously fake we get, people keep coming back,” Wrote Blair on his personal Facebook page. “Where is the edge? Is there ever a point where people realize they’re being fed garbage and decide to return to reality?”

2 comments:

  1. I had no idea he was doing this! There's a lot of hilarious fake information out there, it's a great way to see which news organizations actually do their due diligence, and which ones just grab articles because of attention grabbing headlines. Thanks for letting us know this exists! I wonder, is there an equivalent for the other side? A conservative writing super-liberal fake news articles?

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