Wednesday 26th October 2016                 Change text size:

Michael Fish BASE jumping… surely not?

Michael Fish BASE jumping… surely not?

Of all the weird and wonderful things on the internet, a video of 68-year-old BBC weatherman Michael Fish BASE jumping off a building is up there with the most bizarre.

Fish, who’s perhaps best known for playing down the threat of extremely high winds during a 1987 forecast, only for a hurricane to kill 18 people on the south coast less than 24 hours later, apparently took a literal leap of faith in aid of climate change.

And here it is…

But, and I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, the video is unfortunately a spoof. Fish didn’t actually throw himself off that building, despite claiming the jump was real in an article for the Huffington Post.

Mustafa Khalili, multimedia news editor at the Guardian, Tweeted earlier, “We have decided to take down the Michael Fish video because it’s a hoax. He doesn’t actually jump!” but not before his publication had also seemingly been taken in by the apparent genuineness of Fish’s stunt.

Meanwhile, Guardian journalist Leo Hickman Tweeted, “Guardian turned it down when approached as he didn’t actually do base jump (we had to ask) and cos of blatant plug“, referring to the eco-fashion firm behind the video.

Countless other sites have lauded Fish’s bravery throughout the day, yet barely a handful appear to have taken the time to fact-check.

Even on first viewing, I was sceptical (he boasts, pompously). Call me a party-pooper, but I’m just here to bring you the facts. And the real fact is, the message he was trying to convey is one that absolutely needs to be conveyed.

We’ve got to do something about [climate change] now“, Fish says in the video. He’s dead right. But pretending to BASE jump is perhaps the wrong way to go about it.

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