Sharks are terrifying, which is why sharks and I have an unspoken deal: I don’t go in the ocean and they don’t come to my house. No one wants to get land sharked. And, in an era when two-headed sharks are on the rise, there’s no better time to stay out of the water. Recently, my fidelity to my binding shark pact has been further strengthened (though not as much as when that GoPro footage of the shark attack was released) by an image making the rounds.
Social media has been abuzz with a dramatic photo of a breaching great white shark and all of its fearsome teeth. The image, dubbed 2016’s Photo of the Year, has been credited to Bob Burton, chief photographer of National Geographic. Except that there is no Bob Burton at National Geographic. At all.
The picture is actually a composite of computer generate stock photos manipulated by “Alexyz3d,” a self-proclaimed Russian photographer, illustrator/vector artist, videographer. And it’s available on Shutterstock for all your “terrifying monster launches itself out of the water to eat you” image needs.
This is just another example of information being forwarded on before it is verified. But, really, who wouldn’t spread this image around?
Fake or not, I’m still not going in the ocean.