An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows a lightning strike over Egypt’s famed pyramids of Giza.
The image has been digitally altered. The lightning strike was superimposed onto the image of the pyramids, according to the photographer who took the photo.
The claim that the image shows a genuine lightning strike over the Giza Pyramids has been circulating online for years. This particular Facebook post shares the photo as if it was real, remarking, “Whoa! Lightning storm over the Pyramid of Giza 2 days ago. Apparently some strange things have been happening since. Gods? Aliens?”
The image, however, has been digitally manipulated. Through a reverse image search, Check Your Fact found that the image was actually taken by Australia-based photographer Jason Bennee. While Bennee did actually take the photo of the pyramid, he added the lightning using Photoshop, according to his blog.
“I created this image for my Photoshop blog 10 years ago,” Bennee confirmed to Check Your Fact in an email. “The pyramid is real, The lightning is fake.” (RELATED: Is This A NASA Satellite Image Of The Australian Fires?)
Bennee also added that despite him never claiming it was real, people have continued to perpetuate the claim that it is “every few years.” Some news organizations, such as The Sun and the Daily Mail, have published the image and claimed it showed a real lightning strike over the Giza Pyramids.
This isn’t the first time social media users have shared digital artwork as if it was real. Check Your Fact recently debunked a post claiming to show Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, during Hurricane Isaias that was actually created using digital editing techniques.