VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Website revives Vic Sotto death HOAX

A death hoax on comedian and noontime show host Vic Sotto, which went viral online in 2014, is making the rounds anew.

The latest version is a video published by website and bears the clickbait headline “Paalam BOSSING 1954-2018, Salamat sa mga taon mo sa EB. | CCTV REPORT (Goodbye BOSSING 1954-2018, thank you for your years on EB | CCTV REPORT.)”

The video, which used as thumbnail a photo of Sotto’s co-host Joey De Leon seemingly grieving, plays for only a few seconds when clicked, then redirects users to share the link on Facebook.

Previous death hoaxes debunked by VERA Files used similar techniques such as dubious Facebook “security checks” that pop out a few seconds into the video–a strategy used by death hoax creators to avoid getting blocked, according to Flemish application developer Martin Schenck.

A visibly healthy Sotto appeared in the Aug. 30 episode of Eat Bulaga. The story has been shared since Aug. 23 and could have reached some 595,582 people, with a Facebook page named after actress Arci Munoz as the biggest traffic generator.

(Editor’s Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)