Doctored image shows LGBTQ event in United States, not rally for Philippine politician Marcos Jr

Copyright AFP 2017-2021. All rights reserved.

An image is circulating in Facebook posts that claim it show a rally for Philippine politician Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr, a hopeful in the 2022 presidential election. The image is doctored; it combines a photo from an LGBTQ event in the United States and a photo of a government building in the Philippines.

"HAPPENING NOW: PAMPANGA BBM 2022 MOTORCADE," reads a Facebook post from November 21.

The post features a picture that appears to show a crowd wearing red gathered in front a building called "Pampanga Capitol".

Marcos Jr -- popularly known by his initials "BBM" -- is the son and namesake of the nation's former dictator. He is among the frontrunners seeking to succeed President Rodrigo Duterte in th 2022 election.

Pampanga is a vote-rich province northwest of the capital Manila where pro-Marcos rallies were held on November 21. Many attendees wore red, a colour associated with the Marcos family.

Screenshot of misleading post taken on November 23, 2021

 

The same image also circulated on Facebook here, here and here.

Some social media users appeared to believe the image genuinely showed a Marcos rally.

"Yehey...let's paint the town red...BBM Solid ...God bless BBM", one person commented.

"Wow that's a lot lets go for bbm", another wrote.

However, the image has been doctored to combine two unrelated photos.

Reverse image and keyword searches on Google found the photo of the crowd posted on Facebook on June 16 by an account called Gay Days Anaheim.

Gay Days is an annual LGBTQ pride event held at Disney theme parks where attendees wear red.

The photo was shot in front of the Sleeping Beauty castle at Disneyland Park in Anaheim, California. The location can be seen here on Google Street View. 

Below is a screenshot comparison of the crowd in the doctored image (left) and the June 16 photo (right).

Screenshot comparison of the crowd in the doctored image (left) and the June 16 photo (right)

   

The image of the crowd had been digitally combined with a photo of the provincial capitol building in Pampanga. A similar photo of the capitol building has been geotagged on Google Maps here.

Below is a screenshot comparison of the doctored image (left) and the photo of the capitol building (red).

Screenshot comparison of the doctored image (left) and the photo of the capitol building (red)

Similar photos of the crowd during the same event was posted on Facebook in 2018 here and here.