Hoaxes & Rumors

Video of Sydney Shark Encounter: Real or Fake?

Video of Sydney Shark Encounter: Real or Fake?

A video circulating this week shows a man who jumps into the waters of Sydney Harbour, only to encounter a Great White Shark. Is this video real or fake?

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It is not yet clear if the video is real or fake, although considerable discussion has taken place regarding the veracity of the footage.


In the video, posted on June 11, 2014, we read the caption which states it is a “close call with a Great White Shark in Sydney Harbour!” The description also states that the video was shot with a GoPro mountable camera at Manly jump rock. Take a look at the video below.

The video opens with the man walking around a fence and jumping into the water. Immediately after emerging from the water, his friend can be heard yelling “Shark!” The man then swims underwater and can be heard screaming as a large shark is seen swimming in his direction. Glimpses of the shark can be seen as the man swims furiously toward the shore. At one point, the swimmer turns and kicks his legs at the shark which is only feet away.


Considerable debate has taken place regarding this video. Below are some points of contention by some commeneters.

  • Teleportation. Some have suggested that the shark “teleports” at the :59 mark.
  • Direction. It has been suggested that the shark appears from a different direction than the friend on the rocks is pointing.
  • Only one video. This is the only video posted to this YouTube account.
  • 480p. Some commenters have suggested that the low resolution of the video is indicative of a possible fake, as a GoPro camera can film in much higher resolution. One would expect such a dramatic video to be available in high definition.

Bottom Line

It isn’t clear yet if the Sydney shark encounter video is real or fake, but the clip has its share of critics. Some have suggested that if it is not real, it could be a marketing ploy by GoPro.

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