The National Football League’s Washington Redskins won’t be getting a name change as some websites appeared to suggest Wednesday morning. Several website appeared Wednesday sporting fabricated articles about an upcoming name change for the team sparking confusion among fans.

Websites designed to look like reputable news sources, like The Washington Post, Sports Illustrated, and ESPN, appeared online featuring the site logos and various headlines declaring that a name change for the team was official.

fake washington post redskins story This fake website appears to be the same as the Washington Post, but the link is wrong, and the story is untrue. Photo: Screenshot

The websites look incredibly similar to the actual sites they’re meant to imitate. But the links differ from the official news sites and the buttons on many of the hoax sites didn't actually function. This screenshot of the fake Washington Post website shows a link “washpostsports.com.” The actual Washington Post website is hosted at “washingtonpost.com.” Additionally, on the fake website, the commands to change sections, to sign in, or subscribe don’t lead anywhere.

The same trend carried through with the other websites as well. The hoax Sports Illustrated site was hosted at “sportsillustrated.news,” while the real Sports Illustrated website is at “si.com.”

redhawks This website promoted the Redhawks name change, linked to social media accounts promoting the new team name, and hosted fake stories about the name change. Photo: Screenshot

The stories were elaborate enough to include details, like fake quotes, a debut date of "Fall 2018," and a new logo for the proposed team name, “Redhawks.” There was also a link to a website that had a new logo and information about the new team. Fake social media accounts were also connected with the site and the stories. A tweet from the “@redhawksdc” said “The Washington Football team is proud to announce a new mascot! #GoRedhawks.”

The team’s name has been the center of controversy for its history as a derogatory term and racial slur. But the Supreme Court ruled in June that the censoring or banning the name would be a violation of the First Amendment. Earlier this year, The Washington Post, conducted a poll in which it found that of more than 500 Native American people polled, 90 percent of them weren’t offended by the team name.

 “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,” Senior Vice President of Communications for the Washington Redskins, Tony Wyllie, told International Business Times.

But some fans online were actually believing the hoax. People were relieved that the team had "come to its senses."

Other people were simply sharing the links to the false articles, perpetuating the false story.