Neil Sherwin of Backpage Football explains how the disaster involving Brazilian club Chapecoense has been used by unethical “media outlets”

1 December ~ This week there has been a huge outpouring of support from the football community for Chapecoense, the Brazilian club who lost 19 players in an air crash in Colombia.

Among the many gestures, Atlético Nacional, who were due to play Chapecoense in the Copa Sudamericana final, have asked that the title be awarded to their opponents, while many clubs have offered to loan players to Chapecoense for free while they rebuild.

However, as is often the case with such events, it has also brought out the worst in social media. Neil Sherwin of Backpage Football has looked at how unsubstantiated rumours – including Cristiano Ronaldo “reportedly” donating €3 million to Chapecoense, which turned out to have no actual sources – are spread by lowbrow accounts such as Bench Warmers and Sport Bible, who seem more interested in profit and “social reach” than facts.

“The unethical practices of these profit making companies need to be highlighted,” Sherwin writes. “It’s ridiculous that a professional institution like Paris Saint Germain should be put in a position to deny rumours that they are donating €40 million to Chapecoense because some 15-year-old in his bedroom in Bolton wanted to troll the internet.”

You can read Neil’s full article about fake news and football on Backpage Football here

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