A false claim that Black Lives Matter activists blocked Hurricane Harvey relief efforts has gone viral on several large conservative Facebook pages. The stories use a false headline and photo to trick readers into clicking through to a story that has nothing to do with Black Lives Matter.
The two false articles, from Mr. Conservative and Conservative Post, have identical headlines and use an image taken in 2015 in Boston as their thumbnail.
Meanwhile, the reality is that Black Lives Matter Houston has been active in relief efforts by collecting food for shelters, gathering school supplies for kids who start classes soon, and bringing food and supplies to families and individuals.
This is actually the second wave of false stories claiming that BLM interfered with Harvey relief efforts. Days earlier, OurLandOfTheFree.com published a completely false story with the same claim. That site claims to be satirical and discloses on its homepage that all of its stories are fake.
After his story went live, a group of other websites, likely run by people in Eastern Europe, quickly copied it, according to Snopes.
So, to recap: Black Lives Matter is helping with relief efforts in Houston, and the stories claiming otherwise were created by hoaxsters and hyperpartisan publishers to make money and create confusion.
Craig Silverman is a media editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto.
Contact Craig Silverman at email@example.com.
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