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Fact Check: National Geographic Did NOT Tweet This Regarding Milky Way; Viral Tweet Is Altered


A screenshot of a tweet is doing the rounds on social media. The purported tweet, attributed to National Geographic reads, “Bright, white and associated to milk, a white substance. Is the way our own galaxy is named, racist?”

The post is being shared on Facebook with a caption that reads, “Even the galaxy is racist now.”

Here’s the link to the above post. Check similar posts here, and here


NewsMobile fact-checked the above claim and found it to be false. 

We reviewed the Twitter account of National Geographic @NatGeo using Twitter Advanced Search but did not find any such tweet as claimed in the viral post.

We searched on Google using appropriate keywords and found a blog by National Geographic captioned “Our Milky Way Galaxy Is as White as, Well, Milk” published on January 12, 2012. However, it wasn’t exactly the same as in the viral tweet.

Digging further, we found the same photo as it appears in the viral claim on a tweet posted by National Geographic on May 29, 2021. Though, this tweet didn’t say anything about “Milky Way being racist” as claimed in the viral post. 

Here’s a comparison of the viral tweet and the original tweet.

Nat Geo even confirmed to Reuters that the above tweet has been altered, ‘A recent, authentic tweet, seen here, has been digitally altered into something that was never tweeted’. Thus, it becomes clear here that the above tweet has been altered and is being shared with false claims. 

It is evident from the above information that National Geographic did not post this alleged tweet about Milky Way. The screenshot has been altered. 


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