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Nope, A Woman Didn't Fake Being Blind For 28 Years To Avoid Social Interactions

The viral hoax started as a joke on a satirical Spanish website.

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A story about a Spanish woman pretending to be blind for 28 years to avoid social interactions has gone massively viral. Unfortunately, it's not true.

Viral Thread / Via viralthread.com

The hoax originated with the satirical Spanish website Hay Noticia, the tagline of which translates to "Don't believe everything on the internet."

According to the satirical story, a 57-year-old woman named Carmen Jiménez faked being blind for almost three decades because she didn't like small talk.

"I was tired of seeing people and stopping to say hello. I've never been very social, and pretending to be blind has avoided many social commitments," the fictitious Jiménez is quoted as saying.

Numerous English-language websites have since picked up the story and reported it as fact.

RSVP / Via rsvpmagazine.ie

The hoax, versions of which were published on viral aggregators like Viral Thread and Oddity Central, has gotten tens of thousands of shares, comments, and reactions on Facebook.

The Irish celebrity gossip magazine RSVP even attributed one of Jiménez's quotes to a non-existent Sky News interview.

The photo accompanying most of the stories, showing a blonde woman with glasses, is a free stock image available from Pixabay.

In another version of the hoax, the photo of the fake blind woman actually shows Vix Lowthion, a Green Party candidate running to represent the Isle of Wight in the UK Parliament.

Instagram / Via instagram.com

An Instagram post with Lowthion's image on the fake story has gotten almost 250,000 likes since it was uploaded by the popular account FuckJerry, which has more than 12 million followers.

Lowthion told an Isle of Wight newspaper she was surprised to see her face associated with a viral hoax, although being a public figure means there are many photos of her online.

"But 12.2 million followers? And saying I'm a 57-year-old Spanish woman?! I'm not sure that's so much of a compliment," Lowthion told the Isle of Wight County Press.

Ishmael Daro is a social news editor for BuzzFeed and is based in Toronto.

Contact Ishmael N. Daro at ishmael.daro@buzzfeed.com.

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