LOOK: Elaborate hoax has hit the internet saying Redskins are changing their name
The Washington Redhawks are not an actual thing
The Washington Redskins would like everyone to know that they will not be changing their name next season.
The Redskins had to release a statement on Wednesday after an activist group went through a lot of trouble to put together an elaborate internet hoax (or publicity stunt) that said that team would be changing its name to the Redhawks for the 2018 season.
The people who put the publicity stunt together covered all their internet bases when they made the announcement that the Redskins would be "changing" their name. For one, they made fake news sites that looked exactly like ESPN, Sports Illustrated, the Washington Post and Bleacher Report and then used those fakes sites to push a press release that said the team's name would be changing.
The fake press release included quotes from Redskins owner Daniel Snyder and coach Jay Gruden.
Not only did the group create fake news sites, but they also created an official Facebook page and an official Twitter page for the team. And they designed a new helmet and created an official team website.
The Redhawks also have their own logo.
Again, the Redskins would like you to know that none of this is actually real and that the team won't be changing its name to the Redhawks.
"This morning, the Redskins organization was made aware of fraudulent websites about our team name. The name of the team is the Washington Redskins and will remain that for the future," the team said in a statement.
The people behind the stunt identified themselves Wednesday. The stunt was pulled off by an activist group known as Rising Heart and was done to show the Redskins how easy it would be to change the team's name.
"We created this action to show the NFL and the Washington Football franchise how easy, popular and powerful changing the name could be," one of the organizers said in a statement. "What we're asking for only changes four letters. Just four letters!"
In their statement, the group did apologize for misleading people about the name change.
"We are sorry for the disappointment and confusion many will feel learning that Snyder has not changed the name yet," the group said. "The purpose of this action is to show that the need for a new mascot is real and immediate."
The Redskins to Redhawks name change has been pulled off before. In 1997, Miami of Ohio -- alma mater of Ben Roethlisberger -- switched its name from Redskins to Redhawks. Of course, don't look for Washington to change its name anytime soon, because Snyder has made it clear that he's going to stick with Redskins.
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