Though piracy is far down from its early 2010s peak, Somali pirates did recently seize their first ship since 2012. This video “Somali Pirates VS Ship’s Private Security Guards,” currently at 13 and a half million views, seems to show part of a new resurgence in piracy on the high seas. Nope. This vid is a re-up from more than five years ago.

The excellent shipping blog gCaptain tracked down the original source not only to the first time it was uploaded, but to the first time it was shown, in a conference in the end of 2011:

The video in question was originally posted online by an unidentified source in April 2012. Details of the video were not immediately clear in the original posting on LiveLeak, but in May 2012 Bloomberg was able to track down the video’s origin and shed some light on the incident after it sparked a debate about the guards’ use of of force, which many at the time called excessive.

Here’s the video in question:

According to the Bloomberg report, the video first appeared at a shipping conference in December 2011 and was filmed by a team member from the Norfolk, Virginia-based private security firm Trident Group while operating aboard the MV Avocet, a 53,462 dwt bulk carrier owned by New York-based Eagle Bulk Shipping Inc.


So whatever the status of Somali piracy is at the moment, this video has nothing to do with it. The re-uploaders of this video do not make this clear whatsoever, which is kinda bullshit, as gCaptain chides:

So, to the re-uploaders of this video, we say shame on you. While you may claim to be a group “highlighting the lives of all those connected to the high seas.” In our opinion, all you are doing is creating confusion by regurgitating old content, which you do not own, without context or details, and all for the sole reason of generating views and income. If you really cared about the seafaring community, you would donate 100% of the proceeds from video to any one of the number of charities helping seafarers and former hostages who are still struggling with the lasting effects of piracy on the high seas.

Never try to fake out the internet. There is always a sleuth who knows more than you think they do.

Raphael Orlove is features editor for Jalopnik.

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