Abstract

This paper addresses the suggestion that “fake news” would be better called “folk news.” It explores the tale of the death and subsequent replacement by an impostor of a nineteenth-century celebrity, comparing that story to similar tales about Paul McCartney and Mark Twain. The legends and proverbs created in the context of these news reports suggest that “fake news” is not the same as “folk news,” largely because “folk” does not mean “fake.”

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