The claim: Disney filed patent for a roller coaster that jumps off the tracks
Disney operates some of the most iconic rollercoasters in the world, including Space Mountain and Rock n' Roller Coaster. But social media users are now claiming the company wants to add a new death-defying ride to its parks.
"Disney allegedly just filed a patent for a new roller coaster that jumps off the track," reads a Nov. 25 Instagram post (direct link, archived link) that was liked more than 70,000 times in two days.
Some comments pointed out the dangers of the ride, while others were skeptical of the claim. One Instagram user responded by saying it's "surprisingly real."
But the claim shouldn't be taken seriously. It originated on a satirical website, and there is no evidence Disney wants to build any such ride.
USA TODAY reached out to social media users who shared the claim for comment.
Website where claim originated says its content isn't 'true, real or accurate'
The claim originated on The Mouse Trap, which describes itself as the "world’s best satire site"and a publisher of "fake stories about Disney Parks stuff."
An article about the supposed patent was published Oct. 30. According to the article, Walt Disney Imagineering, the company arm that designs and builds Disney's theme parks, filed a patent for a roller coaster that "will fly through the air during part of the ride, with no track under it."
Disney has to do "rigorous testing" before opening the ride to the public, the website reported, and that would not be completed until "2030 at the earliest, if it even happens."
But no such patent could be found by USA TODAY through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s online search tool.
According to The Mouse Trap's "about" page, its content is "not true, real or accurate" and is meant purely for entertainment.
"We also hope that Disney sees how much people like some of our stories and decide to actually make one of our stories a reality!" the website says.
Fact check: Disney+ has gained subscribers, not lost them
The article is an example of what could be called "stolen satire," where stories written as satire and presented as such are captured and reposted in a way that makes them appear to be legitimate news. As a result, readers of the second-generation post are misled, as was the case here.
KGTV in San Diego also reported that the claim was satirical.
Disney did not return USA TODAY’s requests for comment about the claim.
Our rating: False
Based on our research, we rate FALSE the claim Disney filed a patent for a roller coaster that jumps off the tracks. There is no evidence any such patent was filed. The claim originated on a satirical website.
Our fact-check sources:
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, accessed Dec. 1, Patent Public Search
The Mouse Trap, accessed Dec. 1, About
ABC 10 News, Nov. 18, Fact or Fiction: Disney planning for roller coaster that jumps track?
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Claim about Disney coaster that jumps the tracks is satire