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Opinion: Vancouver radio station accidentally shares fake news of Canucks firing Benning

They got 'Booth'd" as Vancouver Hockey Twitter calls it
Screen Shot 2021-05-18 at 3.23.06 PM
MrBooth_7 strikes again

Rock 101 radio host Dean Hill was fooled into reporting a fake news story on the air this afternoon, created by a person who goes by the handle of @MrBooth_7 on Twitter.

Broadcast from 101.1FM at around 3 p.m. was the breaking "news" that the Vancouver Canucks General Manager Jim Benning would be stepping aside, according to what Hill said was a statement from the team's owner, Francesco Aquilini.

However, the statement didn't come from the official Francesco Aquilini Twitter account, it came from the MrBooth_7 account which is infamous on Vancouver Hockey Twitter for pretending to be the Canucks owner and managing to fool a lot of people into believing outlandish things.

Multiple times over the past year, the user has switched their profile photo to match the one Aquilini uses, switched the name that appears next to it to "Francesco Aquilini," then tweeted stuff which many believed was Aquilini saying it. Like the time he tweeted about being at a blueberry farm, or missing players who are no longer on the team.

It helps that the user has 10,000 followers, lending legitimacy when people click into a tweet of his for the first time, thinking it's real.

This is apparently the first time that somebody's been "Booth'd" outside the walls of Twitter, on the radio. Hill tells me that it was MrBooth_7's "very official looking press release" (shown above, here) which clinched it for him and made him think it was real.

After he reported it on on air, I stepped into the muck of all of this by tweeting out that I thought that I had just heard CBC report it, not Rock 101. I had been driving my kid back from school and have a tendency to flip between 88.1 and 101.1, and was certain I was tuned in to the ceeb, and shared that with Twitter.

My throwing more confusion into the mix resulted in a sort of Booth Inception alternate universe, where there were layers upon layers of false facts being reported and bending reality.

But today, 4 things are true:

1. I am an idiot, and I'm sorry for thinking (and tweeting) it might be CBC who reported it.

2. Dean Hill is not an idiot, he's just the first broadcast victim of the deviant MrBooth_7. He will likely not be the last.

3. Jim Benning is still employed as the Canucks General Manager.

4. MrBooth_7 has committed to doing an interview with us in the future, and I will bring you into his weird world.