Jaden Smith Commits Suicide

A hoax article reported that the actor (and teenaged son of Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith) had killed himself.

  • Published 28 July 2016

Claim

Actor Jaden Smith committed suicide in July 2016.

Rating

Origin

In July 2016, news raced through social media that Jaden Smith, actor and son of Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith, had committed suicide:

jaden smith

The news was not true, and didn’t come from a legitimate source. In fact, users who clicked the above-displayed message were greeted with a popup message requesting permission from a Facebook app to post on their behalf, making the article appear less like a hoax and more like an outright scam: 

facebook permission

Messages about Jaden Smith’s alleged suicide were shared from various sites, and led to a variety of dodgy-sounding Facebook apps, including “Smart Mobiles,” “Gadgy Land,” “Pakiza,” “Top Feeds” and several others. 

Intrepid internet users who clicked the link and gave the app permission were eventually greeted with one of several “news” story claiming that Jaden Smith had committed suicide. The web sites responsible for this hoax have published dozens of fake news stories and graphics with this false claim:

fake web site

Users who granted these apps permission to post to Facebook on their behalf quickly found this death hoax posted to their own Facebook feeds, thereby replicating itself across social media.

Jaden Smith himself has been active on his social media accounts, seemingly unaware that he’s supposed to be dead. He posted a photograph of himself on 27 July 2016:

jaden smith

Clickbait stories such as celebrity death hoaxes are common ways for dubious web sites and apps to spread malware.  Even if the sites don’t spread invasive software outright, your computer or social media accounts can still be easily hijacked so that unscrupulous companies can profit from a seemingly large social media presence.

Snopes.com
Since 1994
A Word to Our Loyal Readers

Support Snopes and make a difference for readers everywhere.

Editorial
  • David Mikkelson
  • Doreen Marchionni
  • David Emery
  • Bond Huberman
  • Jordan Liles
  • Alex Kasprak
  • Dan Evon
  • Dan MacGuill
  • Bethania Palma
  • Liz Donaldson
Operations
  • Vinny Green
  • Ryan Miller
  • Chris Reilly
  • Chad Ort
  • Elyssa Young

Most Snopes assignments begin when readers ask us, “Is this true?” Those tips launch our fact-checkers on sprints across a vast range of political, scientific, legal, historical, and visual information. We investigate as thoroughly and quickly as possible and relay what we learn. Then another question arrives, and the race starts again.

We do this work every day at no cost to you, but it is far from free to produce, and we cannot afford to slow down. To ensure Snopes endures — and grows to serve more readers — we need a different kind of tip: We need your financial support.

Support Snopes so we continue to pursue the facts — for you and anyone searching for answers.

Team Snopes