Humans of Bombay, a verified account on Instagram is known to share stories of people around Mumbai, showing how things are amazingly perfect by glorifying and romanticizing the human sufferings. This page shared a post emphasizing on the hardships suffered by the barber in the times of pandemic on July 14th but turns out the facts are distorted. Is Humans of Bombay still a relevant group of storytellers or the quality has declined?
The post was shared with a long expressive caption, highlighting the tribulations of a barber in Pune during the Covid-19 epidemic. It told how the barber made his living with his two shops in Pune and Mumbai, buying 1RK flat in Pune with his savings where he lived with his wife and four kids.
The post also mentioned how the barber was fulfilled with supplies needed for his business by Gillette. It also stated that not only did the company send him Suraksha kits with lazors and masks along with videos and safety tips but also 1 Lakh health insurance two days later.
The Instagram account of Humans of Bombay currently has 1 million followers which shared the story of a barber without mentioning his name. However his name happens to be Imran who wasn’t aware that his story was shared by them.
A video was shared by a resident of Pune, Maharashtra in which he was questioning the same person shown in the post in the matter whether he knew that his story was published on the page to which he audibly denied. It is very much evident from the video that he didn’t had any clue about this earlier.
The account of Humans of Bombay started editing the post persistently when it was confronted by the people who lived in the barber’s locality, deleting their comments later. The post was initially shared mentioning the location as Bombay and sharing through the caption that the barber bought a flat in Bombay, also tagging Gillette’s account in the post. Later both the locations were edited to Pune and the tag of Gillette removed.
Apparently the account also took down the same post from its Facebook page.
There are people out there with real stories like these, but publishing these fake stories only leads to individuals being ignorant to the deprived ones who deserve genuine recognition. More than 46000 people liked the post and around 1500 appreciated the fake story in the comment section. This shows how widely the post with false message was escalated over the social media.
This is a great example why fake news is a big disaster in online media and why it is always necessary to ask the source of the news.