BANGKOK – A report that features an image supposedly depicting a young girl with the lower body of a snake is currently making its way around the interwebs via social media posts, email, and the blogosphere.
According to the report, “snake girl”, Mai Li Fay from Bangkok, Thailand, suffers from a very rare condition called “Serpentosis Malianorcis” or Jing Jing’s disease. The report claims that one Dr Ping Lao, who is billed as Thailand’s top medical expert, diagnosed the rare syndrome, which gives the lower body a “distinct reptilian form and aspect”.
Supposedly, the girl has become a major attraction with thousands of pilgrims and tourists gathering outside her house each day.
But, of course, the claims in the report are nonsense and the picture is clearly the result of digital manipulation. I would have hoped that common sense alone would have been enough for people to recognize that the image is just a silly hoax. But, apparently, “common” sense is misnamed. Reports and submissions suggest that quite a few people around the world do actually believe the story. And, in fact, the story has even been picked up by some fringe news sources.
There are no credible medical reports about a condition known as “Serpentosis Malianorcis”. Nor are there any believable references to the supposedly renowned Dr Ping Lao.
The article and image originates from the World News Daily Report website, a publication that specializes in churning out unmitigated nonsense. The site features all manner of odd tales, including a horse with a duck’s head, gigantic home invading lobsters, and a circus lion who has shamefully confessed to being a vegetarian. In fact, all of the articles on the site are fictional are not meant to be taken seriously. They are clearly intended to entertain and amuse.
And, for the record, if such a snaky youngster did exist, mainstream news outlets all over the planet would have extensively – and endlessly – reported her case. Her story would certainly not have stayed confined to childish entertainment websites and wide-eyed gossip blogs.