4chan leaked Alec Baldwin shooting story and no one believed them

Molly Young October 22, 2021
4chan leaked Alec Baldwin shooting story and no one believed them
Photo by Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images for National Geographic

Anonymous website 4chan reportedly leaked the news of the accidental on-set shooting involving Alec Baldwin before official news broke – and no one believed it. Here’s what happened.

Could an anonymous user on the TV forum work in the film industry? Find out what exactly 4chan is and how the platform works as we uncover the leaked story as well as online reactions.

4chan leaked Alec Baldwin shooting story before official news broke

American actor Alec Baldwin accidentally discharged a prop gun on the set of a New Mexico film entitled Rust on 20 October at about 1.30pm local time.

When tragically misfiring, the shot killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza.

According to BBC News, 48-year-old Souza was taken from the scene at Bonanza Creek Ranch by ambulance to receive emergency care.

Hutchins, 42, was also flown to hospital by helicopter but died of her injuries.

Although the official story broke on 22 October 2021, a 4chan’s TV forum appears to have known about the shooting incident beforehand as a user seemingly leaked the news online.

Since 4chan is anonymous, the user felt safe sharing the news leak and likely works in the film industry.

While the original post has now been deleted, a user named @ApexPigg shared a screenshot of the 4chan broadcast on Twitter.

Posted by an anonymous profile on 21 October 2021, the message bluntly stated Alec Baldwin had just accidentally shot two people on set with a loaded blank gun.

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What is 4chan?

4chan is an anonymous English-language imageboard website that hosts boards dedicated to a wide variety of topics.

The platform is a simple image-based bulletin board where anyone can post comments and share images.

You don’t need to register an account before participating in the community, making the forum’s users anonymous.

Since profiles cannot be identified, the platform is often used for shock content rarely shown on regular, more accessible sites.

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This isn’t the first time information has been leaked on 4chan before reaching official news outlets. The Record previously reported a data leak surrounding video-streaming platform Twitch that was uploaded by an unknown user.

Twitter reacts in disbelief 

The original social media post displaying the 4chan screenshot has now received more than 1,400 likes along with many reactions underneath the post and throughout Twitter’s timeline.

Some users were reminded of a similar incident a few years ago when 4chan users leaked the ending of Breaking Bad season 4. Fans on the TV board refused to believe the spoiler until the season’s ending confirmed it.

Others were more confused why an observer of the tragic accident felt the need to immediately inform social media:

One Twitter user speculated on 4chan’s anonymous nature:

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Molly Young is a Journalism with Public Relations student at Leeds Beckett University. Boasting a creative background through her studies and on her personal social media channels, Molly loves creating content and providing entertainment analysis through her writing.