CBS Los Angeles has confirmed that Hogg is an MSD High School student. The friend complied with the lifeguard’s request, but the interaction turned sour after the friend made a snide remark.
Despite more than a year of increased scrutiny on the social media companies whose platforms have previously helped conspiracy theories and misinformation to go viral, the Hogg video is evidence that viral falsehoods still benefit from the algorithms that define many of our experiences online.
The theory that David, who is 17, was coached to speak out against Trump grew from a post by the Gateway Pundit, a hyper-conservative site with a track record for pushing conspiracy theories.
But the decision by Hogg and several other students to go public with demands for gun control legislation has put them at the center of press attention and in the middle of one of the contentious issues in U.S. society.
Of the 10 videos he has uploaded, three have to do with Stoneman Douglas, including “David Hogg Can’t Remember His Lines When Interviewed for Florida school shooting”.
Hogg addressed the comments about him on Tuesday during an appearance on CNN’s AC360.
“Do we really think – and I say this sincerely – do we really think that 17-year-olds on their own are going to plan a nationwide rally?”
YouTube has since taken down the video.
Wrote Kelly to the Times: “There is a clip on you tube that shows Mr. Hogg out in California”.
The “questions swirling” in the dark, nihilist corners of the internet come as students have taken the lead in calling for an end to the inaction that has normally followed mass shootings.
“Based on the way those kids are milking the deaths of their peers for careers”, said Lucian Wintrich of Gateway Pundit, “it’s completely safe to say that they don’t care about those lives lost, they only care about their SJW agenda, and the soullessness comes from social media desensitization”.
Dwyer’s original post adds that “The real truth about this so-called High School gun control activist David Hogg. Here’s a video to debunk that:” tweeted Joey Wong. The far-right One America News Network promoted a tweet suggesting Hogg may be “running cover for his dad who works as an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent at the Miami field office”. Their role, the conspiracy theorists claim, is to make the shooting seem worse than it is and drive public opinion in favor of gun control policies. What is surprising, and troubling, is to see someone intimately connected to the president of the United States supporting such unfounded claims.
The peg of this article was the fact that these students smiled like rock stars in a photo.
Darker theories, such as the one Kelly promoted, were that the students were “crisis actors”.
We rate this claim trousers on Fire!
That was sufficient to peg the “crisis actor” conspiracy and the trending video was subtitled “David Hogg, the actor”.