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Posts Tagged ‘media scare stories’

Scare Stories: Killer Spanish Eggs Poison Britons

dogs-eggsONCE again the Daily Express leads with a scare story, it’s front page chiming: “POISION EGGS ALET.” MacGuffin takes a look:

The dangers of salt. The wonder of cereal. The wonder of mushrooms. And now the danger of eggs.

And not just any eggs. But dirty, scrounging, come-over-here-and-work-on-the-cheap foreign eggs.

As usual with any Express story, but particularly their health ones, the headline says something the article doesn’t.

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Posted: 1st, December 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (4)

Killer Giant Piranha Hiding In British River

piranhaGREAT news for staycationers is that a giant piranha has been found in the river Torridge, Devon.

The better news is that the fish was dead and is “thought to have been an abandoned pet“.

So a fish fancier tossed their dead piranha into the river and ran off, possibly laughing. Right? Wrong. The Guardian senses a scare story in the making:

Its discovery will add, however, to experts’ anxieties about non-native wildlife being introduced to the UK.

Will it? What it tells us is that the Environment Agency, the vested interest group that told the press about the dead fish, is using the dead fish to prove some kind of point, presumably that non-native species introduced to the UK die.

Eddie Stevens, one of the EA’s three-man monitoring team, said they were “left open-mouthed by their discovery”.

“What we actually came across was something which we would not expect to find in our wildest dreams. We could hardly believe our eyes.”

In your wildest dream you might expect to find a mermaid riding Loch Ness. In beyond your wildest dreams you may expect to find a mermaid riding Loch Ness while having coitus with Noel Edmonds. But not the EA’s man in the big wellies. His wildest dreams are about finding a fish in a river. A dead one.

Used to more temperate climes, the fish probably could not tolerate the cold waters, the agency said. A closer examination revealed that its stomach was full of sweetcorn – further evidence it may have been kept as a domestic pet.

Full of sweetcorn. So it had recently eaten. And died. Unless it had died and then was stuffed with tinned sweetcorn by an amateur taxidermist? And so to the point of the press release:

The introduction of non-native species poses a serious threat to native wildlife, according to the agency. Mark Diamond, an ecology manager, said: “Whilst piranhas can’t survive the colder climates of the UK, this latest find highlights a real issue – that releasing unwanted exotic pets or plants into rivers can have serious consequences for native wildlife.”

Yeah, like giving the pike some unusual protein to chow down on. Also, watch out for the men in big boots…

Posted: 28th, August 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment (1)

British People Dying From Candle Fumes

media-scare-stories2TODAY’S media scare story tells us that “Romantic candles could cause cancer, say scientists.”

Anyone who lights a scented candle deserves to die. Now they will:

Candlelight may be key to creating the perfect atmosphere for a romantic dinner or a relaxing bath – but it could also be a dangerous one, claim American scientists.

Richard Alleyne, the Telegraph’s Science Correspondent, cocks an ear to the American Chemical Society annual conference and learnt that fumes from paraffin wax “can be poisonous and even cause cancer”.

Inhaling paraffin fumes might be bad for you. Looks like its back to glue, readers. The report has more:

“An occasional paraffin candle and its emissions will not likely affect you,” said Amid Hamidi, the co-author of the study at South Carolina State University.

“But lighting many paraffin candles every day for years or lighting them frequently in an unventilated bathroom around a tub, for example, may cause problems.”

Get that? If you light candles (plural) every day in an unventilated room for years it might be hazardous to health?

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Posted: 20th, August 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Swine Flu Vaccine Rots Your Brain, Scientists Say

porkSWINE Flu: Forget Swine Flu. The new media scare story is the medicine that treats swine flu.

As the Mail on Sunday screams:


Someone at the Health Protection Agency, “the official body that oversees public health,” says neurologists “must be alert for an increase in a brain disorder called Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), which could be triggered by the vaccine.

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Posted: 16th, August 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (3)

Babies Born Addicted To Swine Flu

swine-flu11SWINE Flu latest – read all about it:

No swine flu jab for children” – Daily Telegraph, front page

Babies to get swine flu jab” – Daily Mail, front page

More scare story facts to Follow!

Posted: 14th, August 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

The Perfect Daily Mail Story

6676748BETH Hale toils away for the Daily Mail, striving as she must to produce the ultimate Tabloid Bingo story, the story that will feed on fear, scare and epitomise all that is wrong with gone-to-hell-in-a-handcart Britain.

One on July 14, 2009, she hit the big one:

Crushed to death: Maths teacher killed in rubbish truck after falling asleep in wheelie bin following night of drinking

Boxes ticked:

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Posted: 14th, July 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment (1)

Scare Stories: Thinking Positive Makes You Feel Terrible

THE Ultimate Media Scare Story goes something like this:

REPEATING positive statements such as ‘I am a lovable person’ or ‘I will succeed’ makes some people feel worse about themselves instead of raising their self-esteem, a study says.”

That’s right – thinking positive thoughts makes life worse for you.

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Posted: 4th, July 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Huge Colony Of Ants Takes Over the Planet

ants-attack-planetTHE summer new brings with it stories of killer bugs that spends all day dreaming up new ways to kill Britishers. Today, the BBC brings news of a single “mega-colony of ants” that has “colonised much of the world”.

Argentine ants living in vast numbers across Europe, the US and Japan belong to the same interrelated colony, and will refuse to fight one another. The colony may be the largest of its type ever known for any insect species, and could rival humans in the scale of its world domination.

Right now ants are plotting to take over. In parts of Dorset, they already have.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says the ants are Jewish ants and this is the way they roll. The Express says they might be gypsy ants, the Guardian that they have as much right to be here as anyone so long as their papers are in order, the Mail says the ants are not as dangerous as the Black Plague they carry on their backs, the Star says Armani finds ants “dead sexy” and the Sun says some of the ants are bigger than Ant, of Ant ‘n’ Dec (he’s the one on the left).

In Europe, one vast colony of Argentine ants is thought to stretch for 6,000km (375 miles) along the Mediterranean coast, while another in the US, known as the ‘Californian large’, extends over 900km along the coast of California. A third huge colony exists on the west coast of Japan. The enormous extent of this population is paralleled only by human society.

How do we know this?

Researchers in Japan and Spain led by Eiriki Sunamura of the University of Tokyo found that Argentine ants living in Europe, Japan and California shared a strikingly similar chemical profile of hydrocarbons on their cuticles.

Scientists have declared war on the ants by shoving shards of bamboo beneath their nails? Is this wise?

However, the irony is that it is us who likely created the ant mega-colony by initially transporting the insects around the world, and by continually introducing ants from the three continents to each other, ensuring the mega-colony continues to mingle.

The only hope is that when Ants Attack – as they will – they remember that it was we humans who got them so much sex…


Posted: 1st, July 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Daily Mail: Children Must Be Kept Indoors

daily-wail1111MEDIA Scare stories: Anorak’s daily look at horror stories making news: Parents warned to keep children indoors as Britain faces emergency heatwave warning

The Dail Mail tells mums and dads to keep the kidzzzz indoors, lest they:

a) Melt

b) Be photographed

c) Inhale fumes from hot Tarmac

d) Catch cancer

e) Meet an immigrant

f) Get hot

g) Miss EastEnders

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Posted: 29th, June 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (6)

Toy Babies Can Kill

daily-wailIN Toy Babies Can Kill, Anorak introduces the media scare story of the day, in which “Danielle Pilot, 16, slipped into unconsciousness and died only hours after a baby simulator doll had been returned to her tutors”.

In “Heart condition kills teen stressed by baby simulator doll” the Telegraph says that:

Her father, David Pilot, told the inquest that college paperwork from his daughter’s child development course showed the baby had woken her every hour throughout the previous night…

Mr Pilot said Danielle had suffered from a rare defect since birth which meant her heart was on the wrong side of her chest, back to front and had two holes in the pumping chambers.

Despite this she was an active teenager who regularly went kayaking, camping and hiking.

A tragedy given the tabloid spin:

Dr Elijah Behr, a specialist in sudden death, said stress and anxiety from the baby were factors that could have worsened Danielle’s condition but it would speculative to say it was a definite cause of death.

Still, the caring Telegraph can link the two.

Speaking after the inquest Mr Pilot said: “We are never going to know what caused her death. There is no conclusion, there never will be and that is something we have got to live with.”

Unless you read the Telegraph…

Posted: 10th, June 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

How To Catch Swine Flu: A Video Guide

WHAT follows is a detailed account of how to catch swine flu and then pass it on. You will pass it on to everybody.

When you die, the worms will eat you and your flu and then pass on to the birds which will kill eveybody else, including the fish…

Swine Flu & Me

Lisa Rinna Had Pirate Copy Swine Flu
Hollywood Child Star In Swine Flu Terror
Jonathan Ross Linked To Pig Flu
Paris Hilton Flies To Mexico
Swine Flu Hits American Idol
Susan Boyle “Beaten Down By Swine Flu”
Obama Came Into Contact With Suspected Pig Flu
Mexican footballer suspended for Swine Flu antics
Peaches Geldof Linked To Swine Flu


Swine Flu: World Health Organisation Saves World From World Health Organisation
Swine Flu Victim Bullied And Scared To Death
Perverted Jews To Blame For Swine Flu, Says Egypt
Swine Flu: The Man Boobs Pandemic
Swine Flu Kills The New York Air Kiss

In pictures

Swine Flu Picture Gallery
Lemon Drink Kills Swine Flu
Designer Swine Flu Masks And Accessories: Pictures
Afghanistan’s Only Pig Locked In Safe House

Swine Flu Fever Killing British Business
Joe Biden Orders Everyone To Sneeze Only In Fields
Swine Flu Pandemic In Pictures
Swine Flu Sourced In The Industrial Feacal Mire
Peta Renames Swine Flu Veal Flu
Swine Flu Outbreak In London
Swine Flu Source Found
Pig Flu Linked To Cancer

Posted: 24th, May 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Drinking Cola Leads to Paralysis

killer-colaMEDIA Scare Stoties – Anorak’s look at new ways to die in the mrdia – with killer cola, death by puddle and murdered heterosexuals…

Drinking large amounts of cola can cause paralysis, doctors warnDrinking large amounts of cola every day can cause muscle problems, an irregular heartbeat and even paralysis, doctors have warnedDaily Telegraph

“Drunken Judge Drowns in 4Ins of Water After Slipping Into Stream Walking Home From the Pub” – Daily Mail

“Worker Cooked to Death at Soup Factory” – Local

“New ‘Super Rats’ Evolve Resistance to Poison” – Daily Telegraph

“Katie, Peter . . . and the End of Heterosexuality as We Know It” – Daily Mail

“Thinning Bat Population Not Solely Limited to New Jersey” –  Press of Atlantic City

Posted: 20th, May 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (3)

Black Widow Spider Settles In Britain, Attacks Man

black-widowAS MEDIA scare stories go, the summer’s first KILLER CREATURE tale of the black widow spider making her home in Britain is a decent effort.

Anorak reader Bat E Bird writes:
A deadly spider related to the Black Widow is spreading across Britain because of climate change, experts have warned.

The False Widow, a purple and black creature with a body the size of a 1p piece, is said to carry enough venom to kill a human…..

Mind you, this bit confused me:

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Posted: 20th, May 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (2)

Antarctic Ice Reaches Amazon

ice-meltingGLOBAL warming will melt the ice, sea lels will rise drowning milions of acres of land us a soup of polar bear fur, slush and oh-so-fresh water. Or not:

WHILE a collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet will have devastating impacts on global sea levels, a study has found the anticipated impact has been seriously overestimated. Using new measures of the ice sheet’s geometry, British and Dutch researchers predict its collapse would cause sea levels to rise by 3.2m, rather than previous estimates of five to seven metres.

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Posted: 15th, May 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Pig Flu Linked To Cancer

daily-wail117MEDIA Scare stories: pig flu will kill all of you!

An armoury of drugs. A global network tracking every new outbreak. Instant diagnosis by phone. We’ve never been better prepared to tackle a flu pandemic… OR HAVE WE? – Daily Mail

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Posted: 28th, April 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Jonathan Ross Linked To Pig Flu

swine-flu-daily-mail1ALL papers bar one lead with news that flu-infected pigs- swine – are out to get us.

No, not those pigs – these are real pigs, with porcine noses and trotters going “Wee! Wee! Wee!” all the way to the abattoir.

Some may look like Jonathan Ross.

As ever, a time of crisis is a time for Tablid Bingo, the newspapers game to see who can raise the body count the highests:

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Posted: 27th, April 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (12)

Woman Fleeing Bear Struck By Hit And Run Driver

bear-roarMEDIA Scare Stories: “Woman Fleeing Bear Struck By Car.”

Police in Colorado say a pregnant woman suffered minor injuries when she was struck by a slow-moving car while fleeing from an adult black bear.

The car drove off. The woman is recovering.

Michael Seraphin of the state Division of Wildlife says the bear was later euthanized after Swendsen identified it.

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Posted: 24th, April 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (3)

Susan Boyle And A Female Hairiness Health Warning

MEDIA SCARE story of the day comes via the BBC, where hairy women lean of the “ Female hairiness health warning”. Can Susan Boyle, aka ‘The Hairy Angel‘, be worked into the story? Read on…

No only are hairy women hairy but they are about to die horribly, choking on their hair ball or being prodded with sharp sticks by angry villagers.

Excessive hairiness in women is not just a cosmetic problem but is likely to be a sign of an underlying medical condition, say UK doctors in a report. Five to 15% of women have excess hair, and a hormone disorder is the most likely cause in many cases, they said.

Women with the problem should not be afraid to seek medical advice, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists report urged.

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Posted: 17th, April 2009 | In: Reviews | Comments (34)

Scare Stories: War, Chinese Condoms And Loving A Cannibal

MEDIA Scare stories: Anorak’s daily look at horror stories making news –

Millions face ‘worst of both worlds’ as cost of living rises but rate for fixing pay and pensions falls to zero – Daily Mail

Man wrongly jailed for 27 years walks free … and is hit by a taxi Daily Mail

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Posted: 24th, March 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Scare Stories: Natasha Richardson’s Warning Of The Week

MEDIA Scare stories: Anorak’s daily look at horror stories making news – Natasha Richardson’s hat, killer light bulbs and gamers die…

The Independent: “Warning of the week: ski safety”

A warning of the week?

Wearing a helmet while skiing or snowboarding could soon be a legal requirement. Québec, where Natasha Richardson’s fatal accident occurred, was already considering making helmet wearing compulsory from next winter…Details of the circumstances of Richardson’s death are still unclear, and there is as yet no evidence that a helmet would have protected her

We Blame Global Warming – “Hot Air Linked to Headaches, but How?”

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Posted: 21st, March 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Scare Stories: German Paedo Wards, And Fear Turns To Fat And TV Give You Asthma

MEDIA scare stories: German peado, fear tursn to fat and asthmas from watching TV

* 13-year-old slays his brother to take over family drug ring

* “10,000 COULD DIE IN SUMMER HEATWAVE” – Daily Star

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Posted: 3rd, March 2009 | In: Reviews | Comment

Media Scare Stories: Sack The Fatty, Pirates With Bombs And Death By Wrinkles

MEDIA Scare Stories: Sack The Fatty, pirates with bombs and death by wrinkles


  • “Having a big brother ‘cuts your chances of children’”

Don’t hit me…

  • “Overweight women…are more likely to lose their jobs”

Fat people work?

  • “THE REAL THREAT: A FLOATING BOMB” – Michael Burleigh sees the oil tanker taken by pirates and fears that if one is stolen containing natural gas it might be used as a “giant floating bomb”

Raise the Thames barrier!

  • “A very middle-class RECESSION – One moment, you’re planning your next holiday. The next, you’re staring into the abyss. As thousands of white–collar professionals lose their jobs, three families reveal the shattering impact”

Aren’t we all middle class?

  • “Can wrinkle jabs paralyse your face?”

More scare stories to follow – unless we’re all dead…

Posted: 19th, November 2008 | In: Reviews | Comments (3)

Media Scare Stories: Ambidextrous Onanism And Cot Death

MEDIA Scare Stories: on the one hand, dead babies; on the other hand, dead babies…

The proportion of infants arriving at school not knowing whether they are right or left-handed has trebled in the past decade, researchers say. The situation has been made worse by excessive parental fears, driven by cot death, about letting them lie or crawl on their front – Daiy Telegraph

This one from the Tabloid Times got the lot: bad science; anxious parents; dead babies; and stupidity

Fingers crossed (get a friend to help) the little loves survive and thanks to Play Station and porn work out which hand is best…

Posted: 9th, November 2008 | In: Reviews | Comments (7)

Media Scare Stories: Impregnated By Telly, Fat Cancer And Face -Eating Gardens

MEDIA SCARE Stories: Eyes down…

Daily Express: – “TV sex peril for young”

“Watching too much sex on TV can double a teenager’s chance of becoming a parent”

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Posted: 4th, November 2008 | In: Reviews | Comment (1)