How about this sequel title to Snakes On a Plane? Snakes In a Casino.
One thing the internet is certainly good for is the ability to spread rumors and spread them fast. However, it's not true, despite what you've read or what your co-worker told you. There are no snakes slithering around the craps table, slinking around the roulette wheel or grossing out old ladies in wheel chairs as they pull down the lucky lever on a one-armed bandit at the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
The rumor has officially been debunked by the Pennsylvania State Police. Trooper William Ortiz stated, "absolutely zero snakes in this place." Las Vegas Sands Corp., which owns the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, released a statement yesterday, "There have been no reported incidents of snakes on our property. We do not allow any animals on property with the exception of service animals."
The story goes like this. A patient visits their doctor concerning some kind of insect bite. The doctor informs the patient that they have a snake bite. Then the doctors asks the patient if they have recently visited the Sands in Bethlehem. The doctor then tells the patient that they are the 14th person to come to the office with a snake bite received from the Sands Casino that week.
What was the reason given why a person would bring a snake into a casino? Supposedly, certain gamblers consider reptiles a good luck charm.
Facebook posts and emails were spread online, and the rumor quickly became viral. Julie Corwin, who is a spokesperson for Sands, had this to say about the Facebook post. "It seems like there was one post that was going around and then it's been kind of modified in a bunch of different directions." The original post which sparked the hoax has since been deleted.
If anything this internet hoax is another simple reminder of the power of the internet, especially social media. The Sands lost business this past week because we now have the ability to spread stories around the world in minutes. Perhaps in this case, a little common sense would have quashed the rumor? But for many, hearing about and talking about slithering snakes in a casino sounds like more fun than listening to reason.
Image via Wikimedia Commons