After several dark weeks for London thousands of people leapt on the apparent miraculous news a baby had survived in the charred remains of Grenfell Tower for 12 days.
It was reported the infant had somehow managed to escape the horrors of the blaze before being found safe and well on the 16th floor.
In a cruel blow this “breaking news” has now been debunked as fake despite including quotes claiming to be from Mayor Sadiq Khan and senior cops in the investigation.
People shared the news, desperate for a positive story to come from the devastating fire which ripped through the West London tower block leaving hundreds homeless and dozens dead.
The story was tweeted out with a BBC style breaking news image from a site called “metro-uk” – which has no links to Metro.co.uk, a genuine news site.
After it emerged as a sick hoax the relief initially felt at the seemingly positive story turned to anger as the prank was described as “low”, “disgusting” and from a “sick individual”.
Twitter users wrote: “Some sick individual has posted a fake news story about a baby being found alive on the 16th floor at Grenfell Tower. Why?”
Maria Fowler, a former Towie cast member tweeted: “So a baby hasn’t been found in Grenfell. Fake news is disgusting.
“As a mother to a nine-month-old – so angry, what kind of sicko makes that up?!”
Another distressed person added: “The story about a baby being found inside Grenfell tower is a sick FAKE NEWS story. Why someone would do this, I have no idea. Not real.”
Facebook has recently stepped up the fight against so-called “fake news” by publishing adverts in UK newspapers warning about how to spot bogus articles.
The social media giant is under increasing pressure to tackle the problem in the run up to the UK general election – after MPs launched an inquiry in January 2017 as part of a global crack down.
The idea of “fake news” came to prominence during the 2016 US Election, with nonsense articles being shared widely.
The tragic news of the tower block victims continued today as one of the youngest victims died after choking on fumes from the fire, an inquest heard.
Isaac Paulos, aged five, who had previously been named as Isaac Shawo, lived with his family on the 18th floor and was found on the 13th floor, Westminster Coroner’s Court was told. VIA