Fact Check

Is This a Photo of a Penis-Shaped Landmass?

"I was looking around and it just popped up," said the woman whose Google Maps exploration led her to a 500-meter long dong in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

Published Feb 21, 2021

 (Google Earth)
Image Via Google Earth
Claim:
A photograph shows an island that looks like a penis.

On Feb. 19, 2021, the "discovery" of a penis-shaped island on Google Maps made international news. As reported by the British tabloid The Sun, "Joleen, from Detroit, Michigan, couldn't believe her eyes when she was having a scroll around in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and discovered the saucy island. …. At more than 500 metres long, the X-rated find is located within the tropical Trinity Islands off the coast of French-owned New Caledonia, Oceania."

This is a real landmass off the coast of Ouvéa Island, part of New Caledonia's Loyalty Islands Province. You can find it on Google Maps here. Below is a video from Google Earth showing the location of the island in a global context:

https://streamable.com/vn7bt6

Because the landmass exists as described in media outlets, the claim is "True."

Alex Kasprak is an investigative journalist and science writer reporting on scientific misinformation, online fraud, and financial crime.