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ANATOMY OF A FAKE STORY: How porn video from overseas made Imenti House trend in Kenya

BY PETER ONDABU

An X-rated video was uploaded on Twitter in April 2018 (link to tweet at end of article).

The post was from a man who specialises in raunchy videos, and he warns under-18s against accessing his tweets.

Now, some Kenyan downloaded the video and circulated it. The narrative was that happened in Imenti House. Because the building is well-known for its clothing stalls that resemble that in the video, many people thought it was legitimate. And Media Critic Kenya has been following the controversy as part of its analysis of how fake news spreads.

It started with sites known to carry stories that are midway between truth and fake. 

Coverage by Venas News. 
Coverage by HiviSasa. 
Further coverage by HiviSasa. 

Then it morphed into a story where everyone claimed to know one thing or other, with the narrative advancing as people kept asking to be sent the video. WhatsApp became the main circulation spot. 

The comments for this genius who claimed to know who the two were are an indication of the interest the video drew. 
An “analyst” gave their two cents worth. 
Someone even got the name of the man in the video.

And the tale evolved to suicide. 
Someone already knew that the guy was no more. 
There were even self-appointed spokespeople. 
The issue was a hot topic even on online discussion forums. 
The “generous” were ready to share with those who hadn’t seen it.

Then the memes followed. 
Memes, memes, memes. 
Yes, more memes meaning people had bought the story. 

It was until late Sunday that people discovered that the “action” might not have happened in Kenya after all.

This wise man said it but not many took notice. 

All until this tweet was discovered. Well, the fake news on Imenti kept blood racing while it lasted. 

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