The Onion fools two Bangladeshi newspapers

September 9, 2009

The other day, I read an amusing article in The Onion describing a supposed press conference where Neil Armstrong, first man on the moon, announced that he believed that the Apollo 11 moon landing (the very mission he flew) was a hoax. Of course I found the article rather hilarious because it quoted Armstrong as admitting that he believed it was real until being convinced by conspiracy theorist videos on YouTube and of course, because The Onion is not a real newspaper. It’s a satire on mainstream news.

Unfortunately, both these facts escaped the Daily Manab Zamin and the New Nation, two Bangladeshi newspapers, who uncritically reported this story without checking it out first:

“We thought it was true so we printed it without checking,” associate editor Hasanuzzuman Khan told the AFP news agency.

“We didn’t know the Onion was not a real news site.”

Both papers have apologized for the embarrassing error.