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Fact check: Altered image shows supposed news story on pronoun usage

The claim: Global News reported that not including pronouns in your bio and email signature is a sign of bigotry

An image being shared on social media claims Canadian news outlet Global News published an article titled “Experts say not including pronouns in your bio, email signature, are a sign of bigotry."

One Sept. 22 Facebook post that included the purported screenshot was shared more than 100 times in four days.

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But no such headline ever appeared on the outlet’s website.

USA TODAY reached out to the user who shared the claim for comment.

Global News targeted by series of altered headlines

Rebecca Joseph, a digital managing editor for Global News, wrote in a Sept. 26 tweet that the supposed headline, along with others that have targeted the outlet as of late, was “not real” and any legitimate articles would be searchable on the outlet’s website.

USA TODAY searched the Global News website but found no record of the purported story.

Make it easier and less awkward for people to get your pronouns right without having to ask first.
Make it easier and less awkward for people to get your pronouns right without having to ask first.

USA TODAY and AFP Fact Check previously reported on the series of altered Global News headlines.

Global News did publish an article on Sept. 15 that included the same byline and timestamp as the altered story. The genuine article, however, was about dwindling restaurant profits, not pronoun usage.

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A reverse image search reveals the altered image appeared on iFunny, a meme-sharing website, prior to being posted on Facebook.

Some companies, including news outlets like the BBC, have encouraged employees to list their preferred pronouns in an effort to be more inclusive of transgender and non-binary people.

The Associated Press also debunked this claim.

Our rating: Altered

Based on our research, we rate ALTERED an image that purports to show Global News reported that not including pronouns in a bio or email signature is a sign of bigotry. This image was digitally created, as the outlet didn't publish any such story.

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Altered image shows supposed news story on pronoun usage