Internet journalists fall for obvious fake

On Friday evening, some members of a Polish forum put together a rather obvious fake. The version depicted on the screenshot is listed as “1000”. The problem is this is the Year/Month of the release. Threshold 2 introduced this version number, and it was “Version 1511”, indicating that the release was (at least intended to be) November 2015. Redstone still hasn’t changed this yet, but obviously, no build is going to claim it’s for a release scheduled in a non-existent month in 2010.

Sadly, many journalists you’d expect to know better evidently do not. Absurdly, some journalists have even tried to justify that it is legit by pointing to the BuildFeed page detailing the build. However, the likely story is that these Polish fakers took the build string from BuildFeed, which published the build string prior to the image leak, in order to give their screenshots a thin veneer of credibility. As the owner and developer of BuildFeed, I can confirm that the legitimate Windows 10 Mobile build retains a version of “1511”, having consulted with the original source for the build string. Sadly, the only journalist that I saw even attempt to verify, and subsequently call out the screenshot as a fake, was Zac Bowden of WinBeta.org.

When I founded BuildFeed, one of my motivations was to provide a central, trusted repository that journalists could reference for their stories. The beta scene has long been blighted by shoddy internet journalism whereby journalists unfamiliar with the intricacies of the Windows development process have latched on to any number of self-appointed “sources”. Clearly this has failed to have quite the desired impact, so I have set up this blog, TomNT (which I like to pretend is pronounced “Tomment”), where I can provide unashamedly biased commentary on the development of Windows and counteract shoddy reporting across the internet.

Without further ado, here are a selection of the journalists who fell for this ridiculous fake:

Got any more laughable examples? Let me know in the comments below. And if you see some screenshots on the internet, and wonder if they’re legit, I’m happy to take a look and give you my opinion. Just highlight either @tomhounsell or @buildfeed on Twitter.

  • Iván C. Fajardo

    I mean, i already apreciated your efforts on Buildfeed, but after this blog post I think I love you :’) The shaaaaade.