NEWS

LAX Shooting Hoax Catches Globe And Mail, Other Outlets Off-Guard

11/01/2013 04:00 EDT | Updated 11/01/2013 04:03 EDT
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A K-9 officer (L) crosses a crime tape line on November 1, 2013 after a gunman reportedly opened fire at a security checkpointin Los Angeles International Airport. Police believe a gunman who opened fire at Los Angeles airport Friday acted alone, a police chief said, while not confirming reports that the shooter and one victim were killed. 'We believe at this point that there was a lone shooter, that he acted,' said Patrick Gannon, head of the LAX police force, saying he 'was the only person who was armed in this incident.' Seven people were injured, including six taken to hospital, said the head of the LA Fire Department James Featherstone, briefing reporters for the first time a couple of hours after the incident. AFP PHOTO/ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)

The Globe and Mail and a number of other media outlets fell for a Twitter hoax during a shooting at the Los Angeles International Airport on Friday.

A tweet from an account called @HeadIineNews claimed that former NSA director Michael Hayden had been shot at the airport. The fake account appeared similar to @BreakingNews, a popular account that tweets news updates but @HeadIineNews had fewer than a dozen tweets . The appearance of the fake account has since been changed.

Gawker is reporting that the Globe and Mail, Sun News Network and even the BBC fell for the hoax.

The Globe and Mail initially included the death report in their story but later realized the error and edited the story to state that "Earlier reports that a former National Security Agency chief was shot dead were a hoax." The paper also issued a correction.

The Globe may have sparked more confusion by initially putting an Associated Press and Reuters byline on the story that included the erroneous tweet. The byline also been changed in later versions.

Media critic Mathew Ingram tweeted at length about the Globe's error.

Media critic Craig Silverman also commented on the Globe's mistake.