Wildfires HOAX Debunked: The viral "image" of the burning Australia is NOT really a photo taken from space

  • Tonight, we issue a clarification on the viral "image" of Australian bushfires, which people share as a "photo" taken from the International Space Station (ISS).

    photo:Earth Shaker;desc:Clarification: This is NOT an image of Australia from space or ISS

    It is understandable that the world is really concerned on the deadly bushfires in Australia, but just as a wild fire, fake news also burn across the net. Several articles and images were actually outdated or miscaptioned.

    The circulating image is NOT actually a photo, but an enhanced graph showing the bushfire-affected areas in Australia from Dec. 5, 2019-January 5, 2020.

    A closer look from the image will show the tell-tale signs that it is not really a photo taken from space: the islands surrounding Australia are missing, the clouds are not present, and intensity of bushfires makes them more of "pools of lava" rather than burning vegetation.

    While the data comes from a credible source (NASA), the graph doesn't necessarily show the actual spatial extent of the wildfires and NOT all of those are currently burning.

    "Given the nature of misinformation, it can spread wildly, much like bushfire can," - Dr Andrea Carson, Political Communication expert from La Trobe University

    Here's how misinformation spread like wildfires.

    Earth Shaker is an organization which aims to shake the appreciation of Earth Sciences in the society and empower citizens to have science-based decisions. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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