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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke July 30, 2020

No, these aren’t photos of Portland, Ore., after the protests

If Your Time is short

  • Some of these photos are from Portland, but not this year and not during the protests. 
  • Two images are from a fire in 2019. 
  • Two of the images are from a natural gas explosion in 2016. 
  • One image is from Minneapolis during demonstrations following George Floyd’s death. 

Five photos being shared on Facebook show wreckage. Two of the images show what look like rows of burned out cars. A third shows several people standing in front of a ruined building. Two more reveal debris, orange cones and smoke at an intersection. 

"All of downtown Portland looks like this!" reads a July 29 Facebook post about recent protests in Portland, Ore. "Ask yourself why you haven’t seen this."  

The answer, it seems, is because these photos are not recent pictures of Portland. This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.) 

One of the photos of cars is from August 2019, when a fire in Portland destroyed a townhouse, a gym and dozens of vehicles. 

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The second car photo, taken by AP photographer Julio Cortez, is from May 30 and shows a parking lot filled with scorched vehicles in Minneapolis "after a night of fires and looting" after the death of George Floyd, according to the caption

The third photo shows the aftermath of a natural gas explosion near a construction site in Portland in October 2016. The fourth and fifth photos are also from after that explosion. 

We rate this post Pants on Fire.


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No, these aren’t photos of Portland, Ore., after the protests

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