Check the Claim: Did North Face put a giant winter jacket on Big Ben?
SKILL: Check the Claim
SUBJECT(S): Pop Culture
Students use a keyword search to learn that this story about Big Ben sporting a giant North Face jacket as part of a marketing campaign is fabricated.
About the Example
Note: If you can’t access Instagram at your school, you can access the video clip here, hosted on the CTRL-F YouTube channel.
This Instagram reel shows a viral video clip: the famous London clock tower Big Ben clad in a giant yellow North Face jacket. The caption claims, “[i]n a striking blend of iconic heritage and modern style, The North Face’s latest ad campaign transforms London’s Big Ben into a trendsetter! It’s not every day you see a historical landmark sporting a Northy.”
This clip has been widely re-shared across social media platforms, but is it real? We can use a keyword search (“Big Ben North Face jacket”) to check this claim. This quickly turns up a fact-check from Snopes debunking the story as creative CGI.
- Show students the Instagram reel, and ask them to identify the claim.
- Have students check the claim using a keyword search (“Big Ben North Face jacket”).
- Ask students to select the “news” tab at the top of the search results page to filter the results for news organizations.
- Have students click on the Snopes article and ask them what they find. Guiding questions:
- Is the video authentic or fabricated? What did you learn from the Snopes article to help you decide?
- Why do you think this video was shared so widely on social media as authentic?
- What are some possible consequences of sharing altered images or videos out of context?