Reddit user strakerak asked: 'What started out as an internet rumor that ended up being infamously true?'
In 2017, I returned to my office after my lunch break to hear my supervisors discussing Tom Petty. This seemed like a random topic to me until one of my supervisors told me Tom Petty had passed away. He was a huge fan of Petty and spent the next hour or so combing through the internet to get more information.
He came back into the room my other supervisor and I were working in and announced that Tom Petty wasn't dead after all. News outlets had jumped the gun to announce his death, but he was actually still alive.
The next day, I came in to find out that Tom Petty was dead; the news may have been premature, but true.
This is a classic example of the rumor being started on the internet. Sometimes, like with the news of Tom Petty's death, the rumor can run wild and appear everywhere. Other times, the rumor can be seen by just a few people and dismissed. However, a lot of times, these rumors turn out to be true.
Redditors know a lot of internet rumors that turned out to be true, and are eager to share.
It all started when Redditor strakerak asked:
"What started out as an internet rumor that ended up being infamously true?"
The King Of Pop
"Michael Jackson writing the music for Sonic 3."
"He actually did, but was never credited on the game because it would breach his contract with his record label."
"He did the same when he appeared on The Simpsons. He appeared under a pseudonym, and the Producers said it was an impersonator."
"Only years later they confirmed it really was Michael."
"His singing voice was actually done by an impersonator, though."
The Truth Comes Out
"In 1998, US Men’s National Team captain John Harkes was shockingly cut from the team right before the World Cup. The coach claimed it was because Harkes wouldn’t fit into his new preferred formation, but rumors flew on the early internet that it was actually because he had slept with his teammate Eric Wynalda’s wife. The rumor was so well-known in soccer circles that Harkes expressly denied it in his autobiography the next year."
"Fast forward 12 years to 2010 and Wynalda admits it’s true. The coach then came out and admitted it was why he dropped Harkes, but that he’d planned to keep the secret as long as Wynalda did."
"The Tim Burton Hansel and Gretel that aired once on halloween in the 80's."
"I heard for years that it was fake but I knew it was real because my dad recorded everything in the 80s and he recorded that. We let a good friend of ours borrow it and switch it over from VHS to DVD and soon after that it made its way on to the internet , and there it is now. I know it's our copy because the tracking in the beginning is screwed up. Still have the VHS."
"There was a similar story with a Nickelodeon movie called Cry Baby Lane. It was supposed to be so scary that Nickelodeon got complaints and denied its existence for years. Someone uploaded a taped copy to youtube about a decade ago."
The Movie Business
"That North Korea hacked Sony Pictures because of The Interview movie."
"I worked in the movie business at the time and the account managers at Sony all basically needed to get new identities as all of their personal information got leaked online."
"My partner worked on that movie and the production bought all the crew 1 year of an identity theft tracking service."
Keep Away From The Ears Of Kids
"Some banned episodes or scenes of cartoons."
"For example, I remember there was a Dexter’s Lab cartoon where he clones evil versions of DeDe and himself and they swear like every other word (censored of course), and people debated whether it even existed cause they only aired it like once. Now it’s pretty accessible online."
Yes, It's True
"Echelon, a massive electronic espionage system by the US and allies to intercept all electronic messages, especially emails."
"In the mid-nineties it was a topic on conspiracy BBS boards. A lot of people in my bubble at the time (mainly uni students in Europe) were including fake threats to the US in the their email signatures as a way to "protest" and "fill the system with false alarms" (obviously useless)."
"Then, in 1999-2000 came out to be true and a lot of security service agencies from UK and other US allies started to admit they were part of the espionage network."
How The Mighty Fell
"John Edward’s love child."
"A reminder that he was cheating on his wife while she was hospitalized for cancer treatment."
"Carrie Fisher's heart attack. Some a**hole who was on the same flight was livetweeting the whole medical emergency and justified it by insisting she was just making sure the family was informed."
It Actually Happened
"Every year around her birthday there was a rumor that Betty White died. When I heard she died, I scoffed, saying that dumb rumor is back.... then saw it on the news. I was in shock."
"The fact that Betty died literally right before she turned 100 is such a Betty White way to go out."
Big Actor, Small Roles
"I distinctly remember some rumors about the reason why Bruce Willis was taking so many roles in sh*tty movies before it was announced he has dementia."
"RedLetterMedia did a deep dive on his recent movie activity to try and work out why exactly he was taking part in basically scam-movies. They noticed he had an earpiece in one of the scenes and joked that the director was feeding him lines. I remember they even disclaimed over the rumours at the time, and possible made a follow-up vid when it was revealed to the public."
What To Do Next?
"That the writer of LOST were making it up as they went."
"Turned out to be absolutely true."
That last one was kind of obvious!
Do you have any to add? Let us know in the comment below.