The Hoax Museum Blog

San Diego Fire — Just got back from New Mexico where I had been invited to speak at a conference about "Hoaxes, Myths, and Manias." I gave a talk about Internet Hoaxes. Getting back was a nightmare. Almost all the flights into Southern California had been cancelled, but I was lucky enough to get rebooked onto a small propeller plane that was flying into the tiny Carlsbad airport. Flew right over the fires, which was an eerie sight... a thin line of flame stretching from horizon to horizon. Here and…
Posted: Mon Oct 27, 2003.   Comments (0)

Mint Rubbing — Check out the wonders of the Romanian Mint Rubbing Association. (Thanks to t.m.Enzo for the link).
Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2003.   Comments (1)

How to Ride a Broomstick — Here's an interesting item sent to me by Geoduck, just in time for Halloween. Apparently a rumor has been going around suggesting that the image of witches flying on broomsticks, with the brush behind them, is wrong. Back in the old days witches always flew holding the brush in front of them. It was only in modern times, as we came to understand aerodynamics, that we flipped the broom around. This rumor can be traced back to Kevin Carlyon, a self-proclaimed Witch King. But this website,…
Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2003.   Comments (2)

AMD Crop Circles — Last month Advanced Micro Devices debuted its new 64-bit micro processor. Apparently it helped promote the launch of this new processor by hiring a group of crop-circle experts to create circles throughout the UK and America. Pictures of their efforts can be seen here (Thanks to Geoduck for the link).
Posted: Sun Oct 19, 2003.   Comments (0)


Apple Promotes Ancient Greek — Here's an odd hoax, brought to my attention by Patrick Georges who lives up the road from me in Carlsbad. It appears that a message has been circulating amongst the Greek community, suggesting that Apple Computer has created a program to teach Ancient Greek online. This program will be hosted by CNN on a page titled Hellenic Quest. The text of this message can be read at the GrecoReport website. The supposed logic behind this move is that learning Ancient Greek promotes creativity and…
Posted: Sun Oct 19, 2003.   Comments (0)

Pareidolia Collection — A very extensive collection of Pareidolia data has been collected by a guy calling himself The Folklorist. Pareidolia, in case you don't remember this word from high-school english class, is the phenomenon of seeing meaningful images in random patterns. Examples would include seeing the number 666 on the wall of the Alamo, seeing the figure of the Virgin Mary in the window of a Boston hospital, or seeing the head of an Indian chief in your door.
Posted: Sun Oct 19, 2003.   Comments (0)

Marry Your Pet — Do you really, really love your pet? Then why not marry him or her? Go to MarryYourPet.com, and you can make it happen. Of course, the marriage isn't recognized by a court of law, which makes it somewhat of a hoax, but they really will sell you a marriage certificate, an 'I married my pet' T-shirt, or a wall plaque. They're all incredibly overpriced. If they offered the certificate for $5 instead of $20, they probably would do more business. They're trying to sell the wall plaque for…
Posted: Sun Oct 19, 2003.   Comments (4)

Clooney Gets Kaycee Nicoled — While I was gone, George Clooney apparently got conned by a woman who told him that her daughter, Cindy, had cancer. When Clooney offered to visit, he got a call from the mother telling him that Cindy had died. Evidently Cindy had never existed. She was just a ploy on the woman's part to get Clooney's attention. Somewhat parallel to the Kaycee Nicole Simpson case.
Posted: Sat Oct 18, 2003.   Comments (0)

Pool Shark — Mark Allsop was kind enough to send along this photo of him and his kids on holiday in Australia. Thanks, Mark.
Posted: Sat Oct 18, 2003.   Comments (6)

Posted: Sat Oct 18, 2003.   Comments (0)

Urine Prank — Two aides at a nursing home pull the old urine-in-a-sports-drink prank and discover the victim isn't amused when she discovers what she drank.
Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2003.   Comments (0)

Raeling Cloning Hoax, One Year Later — Remember the Raelians and their claims that they've produced a number of human clones? Well, this reporter infiltrated their ranks and writes that the Raelians are now all chuckling about what a brilliant publicity stunt the cloning hoax was.
Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2003.   Comments (0)

Mother Teresa Hoax — Rationalists describe Mother Teresa's miraculous cure of Monica Besra's abdominal tumor as a hoax.
Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2003.   Comments (0)

Johann Dieter Wassmann — I've already linked to the website of the art of Johann Dieter Wassmann, but The Age has a full article about this fictitious artist.
Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2003.   Comments (0)

Russian Roulette TV — Man plays Russian roulette on British TV as three million viewers watch. Of course, it was just an illusion, vetted in advance by the police. But the stunt causes controversy anyway.
Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2003.   Comments (1)

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