Let’s say – and this strictly hypothetical here, so please don’t get offended – that you’re a Sandy Hook denier, also known as a Sandy Hook hoaxer. Maybe you’re a lifelong conspiracy crank looking for your next hustle, or maybe you just don’t want to believe what took place that day actually happened (which is, in a way, perfectly understandable), but you’re having a very difficult time coming up for an alternate explanation for something so many people experienced firsthand and so many more saw play out in the media. And while it barely makes any sense whatsoever, the story you ultimately bet the farm on involves Mossad death squads a FEMA “Active Shooter” drill taking place at an abandoned school. But there’s a problem: there isn’t really any evidence that supports your claim. Not only does FEMA not host “Active Shooter” drills (let alone at abandoned schools), but this imaginary drill does not appear anywhere on their calendar. So what do you do? You fake it. It’s so easy, a Florida scumbag could do it!

Step one: Google something simple, like “FEMA drill document”:

Great! Fifth one down will work just fine. Download that. It’s in Microsoft Word format, so it’ll be super easy to edit. And if you’re too ignorant to understand what a “site activation call-down” drill actually is, don’t worry about it, so is your intended audience.

Step two: Open the document using your word processor of choice. If you don’t have one installed, you can always download Apache’s free OpenOffice.

Step three: Now it’s time to do a bit of editing. Thankfully, since the document we’ve downloaded is meant to act as a template, the bulk of the work can be accomplished by utilizing the “find and replace” function built into every word processor (that I know of). Here’s what that looks like in Microsoft’s Word 2010:

Again, don’t concern yourself with whether or not any of this stuff makes any sense… or is accurate… or complete… or is even spelled correctly; we’re pitching this stuff to a bunch of gullible nitwits.

Step four: Once you’re finished editing, save the document as a PDF, which really couldn’t be any easier in Word (though you Save As in 2007/2010 and Export in 2013/2016) or OpenOffice Writer (Export as PDF):

But there’s an issue! If some Doubting Thomas – like an actual skeptic, from outside of the echo chamber – were to get suspicious, all they would need to do is take one look at the properties of the PDF and our cover is blown. The documents “created” date will give us away:

Luckily, this is no big deal. If we Google “how to change PDF created date”, we’re presented with a couple of different options, the easiest of which involves downloading a free hex editor (HxD, for example) and using it to open the document. And that takes us to…

Step five: Find the “CreationDate”:

And while keeping the same format (YYYYMMDD), change the value to whatever you’d like:

And just like that, April 30th, 2016 magically becomes October 14th, 2012! This new value is reflected in the properties of the PDF:

Phew! That was a close one, wasn’t it? But now we’re free to move on to the best part: creating a goofy backstory. For instance, you could say you decided to upload it to a free, anonymous web host after sitting on it for two years. Why were you sitting on it for two years? Who cares? Where did you get it from? No one will even bother to ask! That level of critical thinking has no place here!

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