When Shell announced that they would be exploring opportunities to drill for oil off of Alaska's coast, a grassroots movement of bad publicity was started. First there was the mini oil rig explosion in early June and then there was arcticready.com, a purported Shell social media contest gone horribly wrong.
The problem? While hilarious, they are also very, very fake.
While Arctic Ready has been around for a while, it has just started making the rounds again throughout social media platforms (and we've received a number of tips about it) thanks to a fake ad contest. Even though big businesses are occasionally inept at social media, a company like Shell is not dumb enough to entrust the internet with making posters and memes promoting a controversial plan like Arctic oil exploration.
The website is incredibly professional looking and full of content, but it is definitely a hoax. The front page, which has the phrase "For hundreds of years, explorers have battled the Arctic. Today, we're finally winning," should be a dead giveaway that this isn't real.
The gallery contest is also a hoax. As is the Twitter account @shellisprepared, which is pretending to respond to it. This all appears to be the coordinated work of The Yes Men, who specialize in duping people into thinking about issues.
But, for the future, here are a couple of Jalopnik's "Tips to Spotting an Internet Hoax:"
1 - If it's on the internet, assume it's a hoax (well, except this).
2 - Look at tip one.
Photo Credit; arcticready.com screenshot.