Fact Check

Did Ted Nugent Summon Kid Rock to 'Pass the Torch'?

A routine review of content labeled satire.

Published Apr 24, 2021

 (Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons)
Image Via Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons
Musician Ted Nugent, bedridden from COVID-19, summoned fellow musician Kid Rock to his chambers to discuss a plan of succession.

On April 21, 2021, The Hard Times published an article positing that an ailing Ted Nugent, who announced he had COVID-19 a few days earlier, called on fellow musician Kid Rock to discuss a plan of succession in the event of his passing:

Ailing Ted Nugent Summons Kid Rock to His Chambers

Ted Nugent, bed-ridden from his recent COVID-19 diagnosis, called upon fellow Michigan far-right musician Kid Rock to discuss the apparent plan of succession to the ailing Motor City Madman, sources close to the situation confirmed.

Nugent truly did announce his COVID-19 diagnosis; however, the Kid Rock story was not a factual recounting of real-life events. The article originated with a website that describes its output as being humorous or satirical in nature, as follows:

The Hard Times is a very real punk news site that you should not question. Just absorb the information as truth and move on. The historic satire site was founded in December 1976. It’s made by a group of punk and hardcore kids from all the different sub-genres of the DIY hardcore scene. Any resemblance to actual persons or band names is coincidental.

But at least one news editor fell for it. Nolan Finley of Detroit News wrote in his daily newsletter, "The Motor City Madman is down with the virus, and summoned his buddy and fellow Detroit rocker Kid Rock to his bedside for a symbolic passing of the torch should he not recover." Finley later realized it was satire and removed the item, writing: "An item that originally appeared in this newsletter regarding Ted Nugent and Kid Rock was based on information from a satirical website and is not true. I regret the error, and have removed the post."

For background, here is why we sometimes write about satire/humor.

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