If you’re in the news business, you know come April 1 that you should question any press release that comes across your desk as legitimate. For example, one from Encore RV about its new lightweight two-story trailer.
On April 1, April Fools’ Day, the company issued a press release about the RV. It sent it to a variety of media outlets including to RVtravel.com. The release looked official, but because our editors are all RVers, we spotted the hoax immediately and banished the release to the outer reaches of cyberspace.
But the good folks at RVBusiness, RV News and RV Pro, the three major RV industry trade publications, failed to see the humor and bought the release “hook, line and sinker,” posting it on their websites with no hint it was a joke.
Not only was the trailer listed as having two stories, but it was also described as having an 83-gallon freshwater tank (by comparison, a 2022, 30-foot Winnebago motorhome only has 70 gallons!), 45-gallon gray tank and a 35-gallon black tank. The electrical system, it said, featured a 500-amp-hour lithium battery and 400 watts of solar power.
An 18-foot trailer with aN “83-gallon fresh water tank”? That’s what the PRESS release said. Who could not realize that was a joke?
It also boasted that “Encore’s engineering team found a way to squeeze just about everything you could want in a trailer into the 15PH. Sleeping accommodations feature true queen beds on both levels, a full dry bath on the main level that includes an actual steam shower, there’s even a half bath on the second level.”
Keep in mind, the actual first level of the trailer you see in the fake photoshop-altered RV above has less than four feet of standing room! The second level is about as long as a traditional Teardrop trailer.
TWO QUEEN BEDS? Bathrooms on both floors! Who could ever believe that?
Now, three months after the leading trade journals in the RV industry posted this story as legitimate, it still appears on two of the three websites (RVbusiness.com removed it). And it shows up on Google searches, not as a fake story, but as a genuine RV. See below.
Sure, this might seem funny. But, in fact, it’s not! It’s just another example of how easy it can be today to fool editors into posting fake news, no matter what the subject matter is — RVing, rocket technology or earthworm farming, and, yes, even politics.