Fact Check

Did Fox News Use a Reality Winner Parody Twitter Account During a Live Broadcast?

An image purportedly showing a screenshot of a Fox News broadcast featuring a parody Twitter account for Reality Winner is fake.

Published Jun 6, 2017

Updated Jun 6, 2017
 (Twin Design / Shutterstock.com)
Image Via Twin Design / Shutterstock.com
Fox News showed a parody account for Reality Winner during a live broadcast.

On 6 June 2017, a parody Twitter account for Reality Winner, the 25-year old government contractor who was arrested on 5 June for leaking classified documents, posted an image purportedly showing a screenshot of a Fox News broadcast in which the network mistakenly showed the handle of the fake account:

However, the screenshot was doctored.

The biggest giveaway that this image is fake is the scrawl across the bottom of the image. Fox News typically uses all capital letters during their broadcasts, but this image uses a different font. Furthermore, a white border appears around the words "DOJ Charges Contractor Leaking Classified Info," indicating that this phrase was photoshopped over Fox News' genuine text. 

In reality, a screenshot from a 14 February 2017 broadcast of Fox News was used to create the hoax image; the creator of the Twitter account told us that they did not have anything to do with making the graphic, but they did retweet it.

Tom Namako, the Deputy News Director of Buzzfeedcaptured a genuine screenshot of this Fox News broadcast:

The person who created the image did so by putting a photograph of Reality Winner over a picture of Michael Flynn, adding a fake news crawl, and then posting the doctored image to Twitter.


6 June 2017, 2:40 P.M.: Edited to reflect that the parody account creator denied creating the fake graphic.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.

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