Social media had the chance to be a tremendously valuable asset. However, the internal corruption within the companies themselves, as well as people in general, has undermined the potential benefits. There’s such a tendency to fake things that it’s hard to determine what’s real.
Despite a sense that these platforms could help enhance the human experience, all the cheating and lying have made most people suspicious. A lot of the suspicion seems warranted. Fact-checkers constantly refute things that turn out to be factual.
But even more damaging to social media’s credibility are those users who lie and distort information. YouTube is one of the worst platforms for bogus presentations. Everybody wants views, clicks, and likes.
It’s like an addiction for some people. One YouTuber took his insatiable appetite for attention to a rather bizarre extreme. Trevor Jacob is a former Olympic snowboarder. Jacob fed off of his notoriety to become a popular YouTube poster.
But it seems a recent stunt stepped across the line. A few weeks ago, Jacobs posted a video experience entitled “I Crashed My Plane”. The former snowboarder says the video of his plane crashing is an authentic, near-death experience.
During the video, Jacob is heard saying how he made sure he brought a parachute. He describes the event as “the most intense experience of his life.” The video has generated nearly half a million views. But a few aspects of the video seemed suspicious.
The eventual crash triggered the FDA to investigate further. The story centered on Jacobs flying this route to spread the ashes of a deceased friend. Not long into the trip, Jacob reports that he’s having engine issues. Eventually, his engine fails, or so he says.
Throughout this “harrowing experience,” Jacob insists that he had “no safe place to land. He turned to Instagram to further enhance his wild crash story. Jacob proclaimed, “I did not think I would make it out alive.”
He insisted that he made sure to bring a parachute during this flight because his friend died following the exact same route. But further inspection of Jacob’s video showed no parachute. That triggered even more interest in the lack of authenticity in Jacob’s crash claims.
It appears that the FDA isn’t the only one who saw through his charade. Many comments on his video lashed out at Jacob, calling him a “con artist”. A flight instructor told the Santa Barbara Independent that he felt there was a great deal of evidence exposing this crash as staged.
Flight instructor Robert Perry says that Jacob’s plane was noted as in a “state of disrepair” before it even left the ground. Perry thinks the crash was staged. As a seasoned pilot from the area, Perry also says a “safe landing” could easily have happened.
Perry said, “From the looks of it, he could’ve guided that plane 15 or 20 more miles and landed it on more level ground.” Another YouTuber pointed out that the video never shows any views from inside the cockpit while the engine is supposedly malfunctioning.
A popular YouTuber himself, moistcr1tika, says this is extremely suspicious. It’s almost as if Jacob avoided any video that would provide authenticity because there wasn’t any. The investigation is still ongoing, so it may be weeks before the truth is revealed.
But there’s already doubt circulating around YouTube and social media. The majority feel Jacob staged the crash on purpose in an attempt to secure paid sponsorships. If this turns out to be a hoax, it puts a new definition on how far someone will go for attention.