Hoax stories related to Yolanda that went viral on social media

posted on: Saturday, November 16, 2013

Lifestyle Geek

Super typhoon Yolanda not only left thousands dead, injured and missing but hoax stories spread like wildfire in social media as well. Let’s take a moment and check out which stories were not proven as true and factual.


Anderson Cooper to be appointed as ambassador to the Philippines

A lot of Filipinos may have rejoiced upon hearing this news but alas, it was just another rumor. It all started when published an article regarding the said hoax. The website was also responsible for publishing an article protesting about Megan Young’s nationality.

Anderson Cooper as ambassador to the Philippines sounds too good to be true! (Image taken from )


Korina Sanchez was suspended by ABS-CBN

 As if the first rumor wasn’t enough, another rumor has risen, that Sanchez was suspended by her television network due to the Anderson Cooper incident.

To prove this rumor a hoax, Jasmine Romero of DZMM asked Sanchez for clarifications yesterday.

She’s not on vacation guys! Neither is she suspended.

Sanchez visited typhoon and earthquake struck areas in the Philippines and was filming episodes for her Sunday magazine TV program, which was already planned even before Yolanda hit the Philippines.

Image courtesy of


Iglesia Ni Cristo’s refusal to help

One hoax was the issue on Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) in Tacloban refusal to accept people who needed shelter.

Image courtesy of

This issue was noticed when Mai Militante’s Facebook account posted a status as seen in the photo above.

The authenticity of Militante’s Facebook account is still uncertain.

However, this infamous photo was the alleged message from Iloilo that the Splendor of the Church received.

It was a message that is still to be verified up to this day.

The blog contained a picture that puts INC on the spotlight, amidst ruins, adding that their edifice is as strong as pagan monuments (e.g. The Pyramids of Egypt).

Image courtesy of

Iglesia Ni Cristo denies these accusations saying 

Until the message will be proven factual and true, I consider the first photo a hoax.



Customs asking tax from the Germans before allowing them to deploy their aid and relief goods.

Image courtesy of Metz Diaz Taer

I was tagged on this photo by one of my friends on Facebook.

I immediately gave this photo the benefit of the doubt because from what I have heard, foreign aid and relief goods are free from tax.

My intuition was right because Ruffy Biazon, Commissioner of Bureau of Customs, responded that the issue was not true.

Image taken from Facebook account of Ruffy Biazon



NPAs were attacking Leyte.

Image taken from Twitter account of Ira Abigail Legaspi

The Philippine National Police clarified the issue by tweeting a quoting from DILG Secretary Mar Roxas.

Image taken from PNP Twitter account

So what can we learn from all the hoax that went viral during the aftermath of super typhoon Yolanda?

Let me give you my humble opinion.

  1. Before you start believing any information that you see online, verify if it is true.
  2. Anybody can write something and make it seem true.
  3. Some people are dead serious in making viral contents, whether they are true or not.
  4. Some people use the names of specific individuals and post any issue that seems plausible at that time.
  5. Not everything you read in the newspaper, internet, and books are true.

So, what viral items have you encountered lately that might be a hoax?