A fake item circulating online gives the false impression the Australian government is implanting microchips in its citizens.
"Australia becomes first country to begin microchipping its public," blares one such false headline appearing on the site Native American Stuff.
We decided to take a closer look after Facebook users flagged it as suspicious.
Microchips implanted in human bodies can transform how people tackle everyday tasks. They emit frequencies that do everything from unlocking doors to logging onto computers, removing the need to turn a key or flip a switch.
While it’s true some people have voluntarily been implanted, there’s not a shred of evidence to support the absurd notion that the procedure is mandatory in Australia, as this story claims.
The fake item appears to be a gross distortion of a puff piece from an actual Australian media outlet about an entrepreneur from Sydney who runs a business implanting microchips in customers’ skin.
But there’s no evidence that the tech entrepreneur or her chip-implanting business are acting on behalf of the government of Australia, or that customers sought her service because a government policy requires them to do so.
This bogus item follows a familiar fake news formula, wending its way from a shocking, clickbait-y headline, through muddled reasoning that attempts to support an ultimately untenable central premise.
We rate this statement Pants on Fire.