Google Earth Discovers Man Trapped on Deserted Island for 9 Years.
Google Earth Finds Woman Trapped on Deserted Island for 7 Years.
Hoax or Fact:
The story shared heavily on social media and few other online outlets comes with an interesting claim that Google Earth Discovered a Man Trapped on Deserted Island for 9 Years. A Similar story in the past said Google Earth found a Woman Trapped on Deserted Island for 7 Years. Many people thought the 'believable' story could be true, but no, the claims are not facts.
Origin of Story
In March 2014, Newshound website news-hound.org published a story with the title 'Google Earth Finds Woman Trapped On Deserted Island For 7 Years'. According to it, a woman named Gemma Sheridan and two of her friends planned to sail to Hawaii in 2007, but as her boat got caught in a storm near the Panama Canal, she ended up in a desert island and got stranded there for seven years. However, the story claims that when Gemma Sheridan wrote the S.O.S. sign (distress signal) in the sand, a boy using Google Earth noticed it and that lead to her rescue. This story caught the attention of many people online and some even believed in it, but as for the matter of fact, no such incident was reported by any credible news outlets. Newshound website NewsHound.org is actually a satirical publication that has been posting many fake stories in the past, like British Scientists Cloning a Dinosaur Successfully.
Again on 3 August 2015, another website Link Beef (linkbeef.com) published the same story, albeit, modifying few details like changing the gender of the lost person from woman Gemma Sheridan to man Adam Jones, the year from 2007 to 2006, and the length of stranded years from 7 years to 9 years. As of this writing, the website Link Beef does not display any clear disclaimer, and again, no such story is reported by any credible news outlets.
About the Pictures
The S.O.S. Google Earth image (second picture in Image Gallery) that comes with the stories actually shows satellite image of widespread destruction in Kyrgyzstan back in 2010. And the S.O.S. picture in beach sand (first picture in Image Gallery) is a screenshot of a television program.
To conclude, the stories saying Google Earth discovered a man or a woman trapped on deserted island for 9 or 7 years are hoaxes that originated from satire related entertainment websites.