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Jeff Cercone
By Jeff Cercone November 17, 2021

The photo of a Kansas City tourism sign with a glaring typo is a fake

If Your Time is short

  • A photo of a Kansas City tourism agency sign purports to show a glaring typo that says 25 million visitors are welcomed "anally" instead of "annually."

  • The image, which first began appearing on social media in 2018 and is cropping up again, is doctored, according to Visit KC, which shared the original image on Twitter.

A viral image from 2018 that purportedly shows a funny — or vulgar, depending on your sense of humor — typo on a sign is rearing its head again on social media.

A Facebook post shows a photo of a sign from a Kansas City, Mo., tourism group that reads, "Did you know? Kansas City welcomes 25 million visitors anally." The caption on the image says: "You sure we shouldn’t just get a proofreader in here to take a quick glance at it?" "Nope, looks great. Run it."

The post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.)

The numbers on the sign are correct — Kansas City does welcome 25 million visitors a year — but that’s obviously not why we’re here. It turns out those visitors, many of whom likely came to try the city’s famous barbecue, were welcomed much more politely than the image indicates.

The image of the sign with the typo originally began appearing online in May 2018. However, the photo was digitally altered, according to the Kansas City tourism group Visit KC, which said on Twitter then that the photo "is a fake" and had been "doctored to show a misspelling where there is none." It also tweeted a photo of the original image from two angles.

Featured Fact-check

A spokesman for Visit KC said in a statement to PolitiFact on Nov. 15 that the image resurfaces occasionally and that the online community is always quick to come to the tourism group’s defense, but it has nothing new to add on the matter.

Several stories said the original post was made by an account that has been suspended by Twitter as of Nov. 15. The Kansas City Star pointed out that the account, You Had One Job (@_youhadonejob1), got the wrong location for the sign in its tweet, which read, "Welcome to Kansas."

Our rating

A Facebook post claims that a sign reads that Kansas City welcomes 25 million visitors "anally," instead of "annually." However, the image was a fake.

We rate this claim False.

Our Sources

@VisitKC, tweet on May 7, 2018

@VisitKC, tweet showing real undoctored photo on May 7, 2018

Visit KC spokesman, statement in email exchange with PolitiFact on Nov. 15, 2021

Visit KC, "2018 economic impact and visitor profile"

Kansas City Star, "No butts about it: Viral photo of Visit KC tourism sign is a prank," May 7, 2018

Snopes, "Does a ‘Welcome to Kansas City’ Sign Contain an Unfortunate Typo?," May 8, 2018, "Kansas City tourism poster with very unfortunate mistake becomes butt of jokes on Twitter," May 10, 2018

Check Your Fact, "Fact check: No, this image does not show a Kansas City, Missouri, tourism ad with a typo," Nov. 11, 2021

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More by Jeff Cercone

The photo of a Kansas City tourism sign with a glaring typo is a fake

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