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Issue 159 - August, 2013 (1st Edition) - Page 4

Does a Viral Video Really Depict a Snowfall in the Philippines?

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Outline
Video going viral via YouTube and social media posts claims to show a bizarre and unprecedented snowfall in the Philippines.

Snow

© Depositphotos.com/Gennadiy Poznyakov



Brief Analysis
The claims in the video are untrue.  The fake video is just a prank or a means of promoting its owner's YouTube Channel.  There are no credible news reports that confirm such a snowfall and experts have dismissed the video as fake. If true, then such an unusual event would have been covered by news outlets, not only in the Philippines, but all around the world.

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Example

Philippines' First Recorded Snowfall: Bizarre Phenomenon

A bizarre highly unusual phenomenon shocked the southern Philippine residents as of this 8:00 am (UTC+08:00) there were confirmed reports that a 3 straight hours of heavy snowfall was reported to certain areas in the Southern region.


Detailed Analysis


This rapidly circulating video supposedly depicts the first ever snowfall in The Philippines.  According to the video, which is couched as breaking news from a new YouTube Channel called "RodsburghNewsLive", the unprecedented snowfall lasted for three hours and caused extensive damage to crops in the country.

However, the claims in the message are untrue. Quite tellingly, there are no other news reports of such an event. Given that The Philippines is a tropical country and there are no records of snow ever falling there, it would be very remarkable for the mainstream media to ignore such an event. News outlet ABS-CBN has dismissed the video as fake, noting:

Don't fall for a fake YouTube video clip supposedly showing snow falling in Mindanao, a weather expert said Thursday.

The "Philippine snow" video clip making rounds online is fake, according to NHK World weather anchor Robert Speta.

Robert Speta suggests that the footage may show ash from a 2009 eruption at Mt. Mayon or perhaps a hail storm somewhere in the tropics. There is no way to tell by looking at the video that it was actually filmed in The Philippines.  The presence of a few tropical plants in the footage does not mean it was actually taken there.

The video mentions reports of crop damage worth several million dollars and quotes local scientists as stating that the phenomenon has never happened before in the country. And yet, no such reports have been published by any credible news outlets.

The supposed news report quite vaguely refers to the location of the snowfall as the "southern part" of the country. A real news report would likely be a lot more specific than that.  The Philippines is an archipelago comprising more than 7000 islands, so referring to the "southern part" of the country is virtually meaningless.

And, RodsburghNewsLive so far features only one other video depicting a six-year-old baseball player making a remarkable catch. Hardly a credible source of breaking news.

The video is nothing more than a prank, perhaps intended as a promotional vehicle for the new YouTube Channel.

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Last updated: July 26, 2013
First published: July 25, 2013
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

References
The Philippines
Snow in the Philippines? Fake, says expert
Fake Mindanao Snow Story Causes a Commotion



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Issue 159 Start Menu

Pages in this issue:
  1. Warning - Grapes and Raisins Toxic to Dogs And Cats
  2. Circulating Warning Claims Antiperspirants Cause Breast Cancer
  3. Gareth & Catherine Bull Advance Fee Lottery Scam
  4. Does a Viral Video Really Depict a Snowfall in the Philippines?
  5. Wellness Company Woolies Voucher Hoax
  6. Qantas 'E-Ticket Itinerary Receipt' Malware Email
  7. The Tale of Pastor Jeremiah Steepek and the Homeless Man
  8. American Express 'Online Security Service Notification' Phishing Scam
  9. Dell Computer Giveaway Survey and Like Farming Scam
  10. Tear Drop Monument - Russian Gift to the United States
  11. Bank of America Merchant Statement Malware Email
  12. Disgraceful Hoax - 'All Facebook Companies' Donations to Help 9 Year Old Girl'
  13. 'Disneyland SuMMer Vacation' Free Tickets Like-Farming Scam
  14. MBNA 'Request to Terminate Online Card Services' Phishing Scam
  15. Burned Dog Paws Warning
  16. Tim Tams 'May Contain Traces of Human Flesh' Hoax Image
  17. Spurious Facebook Warning - 'Powerful Computer Viruses Named Trojans'
  18. Big W Samsung TV Giveaway Like-Farming Scam
  19. Siamese Pike Photograph
  20. Circulating Message Warns of Drug Called 'Molly'
  21. 'Confirm Your Apple Account' Phishing Scam
  22. Windows Live - Hotmail Account Closure Phishing Scam
  23. Circulating Internet Message Warns of Rotavirus Outbreak
  24. Facebook 'Graphic App' Privacy Warning Hoax
  25. Harvey Norman Like Farming Scam