They said what?

They said what?

Jaden Raney, Messenger Reporter


If you have had or have a social media account, you have probably seen quotes circulating around people’s posts when they’re feeling in need of some inspiration. Some of these you may have read and thought, “Huh, this doesn’t sound right.” Or “Did this person really say that?” Well, that’s because nowadays, unfortunately, famous celebrities or icons of the past are misquoted so often. This can be embarrassing for the person posting the quote. It can give a false impression of the celebrity or iconic figure and who they really are as a person. Here are some ways you can identify if a quote is authentic before posting or even using it in a school essay.

  1. Is there a source? Too many times, people just see a cheesy quote slapped on a photo of a celebrity. If there is no source or date, how can you know that it’s actually credible?  
  2. Don’t just repost from a friend on Instagram. Research the quote and check if it is real and tied to the person quoted. (Check the “Common Misquotations” Wikipedia page.)
  3. A simple Google search to see if a quote is credible is not the most effective option. Try searching for the quote in book search engines / in its original context.
  4. Is the language modern to the time the quote would have been said? (For example, a Marilyn Monroe quote would not have the word “Sweetie” or “Drama”, because they weren’t used during the 1940’s-50’s).
  5. If you STILL cannot find a source after researching, the quote is probably fake and made up by a random Instagram user or Facebook mom.


Examples of fake quotes seen on the Internet:


  • “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid.” ~Albert Einstein
  • “I’m selfish, impatient, and a little insecure. I make mistakes. I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, you sure don’t deserve me at my best.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
  • “Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius, and it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
  • “Live Long, and Prosper.” ~ Han Solo
  • “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction.” ~ Albert Einstein


Next time you go to retweet or post a quote that you find interesting, just know that if it does not have a credible source, it’s most likely made up by a random person who decided they needed some inspiration.