Yesterday, Twitter feeds, Tumblrs, and everything in between went into a frenzy over what everyone was calling “Back to the Future” Day. The idea was that yesterday, June 27, 2012, was the date Marty McFly traveled to in “Back to the Future Part 2.” There was even a widely shared screenshot to prove it. People cheered that we as a society had finally made it to the future, and everyone eagerly awaited the release of “Jaws 19″ and the Cubs’ World Series win.
But anyone with more than a cursory recall of that classic film knew immediately that the internet—believe it or not—was very, very wrong.
The true “Back to the Future” Day is still three years away: October, 21, 2015. The hoax was so widespread, however, that it called for some investigation into where the internet went wrong.
The bright muckrakers over at Slate pieced together the mystery, discovering that there was a very simple, yet very stupid explanation for the hoax.
Yesterday was the second false “Back to the Future” Day. The first one occurred back in 2010, when Total Film posted a doctored photo of the DeLorean’s dashboard as a joke.
This latest fake came from the Facebook page of a mobile app called Simply Tap. The image was Photoshopped to promote a sale on the trilogy’s Blu-ray collection. From there, the picture leaked out into the mainstream, and people everywhere shared it without any context or an eye for fact checking.
Moral of the story: We still have three years to get the whole hoverboard thing right and make 15 “Jaws” sequels.
Did you fall for the “Back to the Future” Day hoax? Let us know in the comments below and on Twitter!