The Perils of Fake Internet Stories: A Dog Named Tank


Who knows who this guy really is?

photo courtesy One Marine’s View

Editor’s note: Today, we learned the hard way that one always has to be suspicious of stories found on the Internet, especially if they seem too good to be true. This morning, I ran across such a story on a blog called “One Marine’s View,” which seemed a legitimate news aggregator for military personnel. My mistake was trusting the source. I posted the story, and readers immediately noted that Snopes.com had identified it as a fake. (See here).

While some folks have argued that this doesn’t matter, that it’s a great story, I don’t agree. So I pulled it.

Click here if you want to read the fake story.

26 thoughts on “The Perils of Fake Internet Stories: A Dog Named Tank”

  1. THAT WAS MY DOG THEY USED! so annoyed beyond belief that they use for making money from a war story!!! Search Villager Jim on search engines to find me and my dog!

    1. Wow, that must’ve been a surprise, Villager Jim. I don’t think $$$ is being made off this story but goodwill is generated. Not cool to steal pics from a professional source, though.

    2. and the dog at the end of the story with the 3 tennis balls is a painting that I did in 2006 so they shared that without asking for my permission!

  2. I am so pleased you have found this Villager Jim I have been trying to get it closed down for you as I know the story is a lie as they are using your dog. I have been informing people of your link with the Dail Mail and most people have removed the Tank story from face book but it is still about on there. This is your link which I have told many people about. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2675794/The-dognap-earned-owner-small-fortune-Snoozy-black-labrador-picture-thousands-turned-greeting-card.html

    1. that’s awful. And the writer used my copyrighted painting of the lab with 3 balls at the end of the story without my permission. I’m sure that’s being sold somewhere too. caroliyer.com

    2. The story is still on the iheartdogs.com website. I tried to contact them and their partner, greatdoos.org, in the best way I could. I just sent an inquiry on their websites letting them know that they are why I do not support big animal charities, and that it goes straight to the heart of their company’s integrity.

  3. I think the further you get into this story you can tell it is just that, a story. But what an awesome, well written one it is. My dad who is a retired Marine after reading it recalled a buddy he served with, who before being sent to Vietnam had to send his black lab to stay with his parents until he returned. But like the soldier in the story, he didn’t return to be reunited with his dog. Even though this is just a”story” I wonder just how many Tanks there are out there. I say stop focusing on trying to find the author and put that energy into helping deploying military find good homes for their loved ones.

    1. I’m with you girl. Can’t even begin to imagine the pain and grief so many military have had dor all wars experiences. We need to recognize them and honor them and their dogs! This beats the Liberal Media FAKE News any day.!

      1. You’re an idiot. The stay-at-home dogs of military personnel should be recognised and honored? Really?

        The undoubted pain and grief military veterans (of all countries) unfortunately suffer is not relevant to the fact that the story is fake. Fake ‘information’ should be revealed for what it is, even if one supports the point it is making.

        Your mention of ‘Liberal Media FAKE News’ is ridiculous. It’s most likely that this story was made up by a conservative person or source, trying very hard to pull our heartstrings about the risks, trials and tribulations of America’s men and women in uniform.

        Fake news is bad whatever it is, wherever it comes from.

        1. The “story” is about the unconditional love a dog and their person share. If you don’t have that in your life, I am truly sorry for you. If you don’t want it I am sad for you. It’s a story, not a disrespect for our service personnel. I’m sure this story could have actually been true. We will never know. Quite possibly the dog was left with no letter. As it usually happens.

      2. New York Times isn’t fake news. They’d be sued like the tabloids get sued for lying.
        Humpty Trumpty is the only thing fake. He’s a laughing stock in other countries, insightng hate, division and violence in this country.

        1. You had to bring Trump into this story…..how sad…..Get a life…..He did so much good for this country…I doubt you would open your eyes or brain to that…sad.

        2. You had to bring Trump into this story…..how sad…..Get a life…..He did so much good for this country…I doubt you would open your eyes or brain to that…sad. This story, real or fake is a wonderful story….Trump didn’t have anything to do with it…

  4. I just shared this story on facebook….then read how it is a fake story……It was a great story to me even if it was

    fake. The dog beautiful…I believe you should have been asked to use photos of your dog, though.

  5. I agree. Many can benefit from this story and unrelated to money. Well written and no pictures were necessary if that is the issue. The concept of Tank is a gem.

  6. I would be proud if someone used my dog to write such a poignant story, but agree that permission should have been sought first. I have rescue animals and walk rescue dogs at my local shelter, they all have their own story to tell, some very dark. If this story helps to give animals their forever home then surely only good can come from it. So I have shared it on my facebook page because this story is in fact true for so many animals that are suddenly uprooted and placed in care, more often than not we don’t know their history, taking a rescue animal is a challenge but the most rewarding challenge ever.

  7. Snopes is not a reliable source; To their credit, they only stated they couldn’t verify the story (before proceeding to some deep speculation and some mild mility bashing).

    It would be nice if we could find the original author and get some answers.

  8. And the painting of the dog at the end with the three tennis balls is copyrighted by me– I painted it in 2006 and it was used in the story without my permission. caroliyer.com

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