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Fact check: ‘Statement from First Dogs Champ and Major Biden’ was created (and posted) by a fan page

Users on social media are sharing a screenshot of what appears to be a “press release” from “First Dogs Champs and Major Biden”, tweeted from an account named “The Oval Pawffice”. Some users appear to interpret this is an official “statement” from the Biden administration. This is false: it was posted by a fan account which is not run by or affiliated with Biden’s communications team.

Major, one of the family dogs of U.S. President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden, explores the South Lawn after on his arrival from Delaware at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 24, 2021. Picture taken January 24, 2021. Adam Schultz/White House/Handout via REUTERS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT

Facebook posts with the screenshot of the tweet are visible here and here .

While some users acknowledge this is not a governmental account, others appear to think it is, with one comment reading: “What are we...5 years old!! Whats next? A puppet show and balloon animals! […] This has got to be one of the dumbest things to come out of the white house...aside from joe!”

Some iterations feature a screenshot with a replying tweet here that reads: “If anyone inside the Trump administration had tweeted this, we would have been subjected to a litany of outage about how they are wasting time with this when the deadliest pandemic in a century is raging. But I guess we're good now?”

The tweet in question can be seen here , posted on Jan. 25, 2020 by the account @TheOvalPawffice, which identifies as a fan page in their description ( twitter.com/TheOvalPawffice ).

There are further leads that indicate the account is not official: none of their social media pages on Twitter ( twitter.com/TheOvalPawffice ) , Instagram ( here )  and Facebook ( www.facebook.com/OvalPawffice/ ) are verified, such as the accounts of the new administration ( twitter.com/WhiteHouse , twitter.com/POTUS , twitter.com/VP , twitter.com/FLOTUS , twitter.com/SecondGentleman ); Their website theovalpawffice.com/ does not use a .gov address. The mail provided on their Facebook page ( www.facebook.com/OvalPawffice/ )  is a Gmail address, not a White House address.

It is not the first time that the content of “The Oval Pawffice” is mistaken for “official content”. Reuters previously debunked here another claim regarding their Instagram account @first_dogs_usa ( here ).

At the time, the administrator of the Instagram page, confirmed to Reuters via Instagram Direct Message that the fan account is “not related in any way to the Biden transition comms team”. Recently contacted by Reuters, the administrator reassured that their social media pages are not related to Biden’s “comms team”.

Since at least Jan. 27 , the Twitter account has added the word “Fans” in their name ( archive.vn/Alf58 , archive.vn/h0Cfh ).

VERDICT

False. The social media accounts of “The Oval Pawffice” are non-official fan-pages.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here    .         

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