Hoax Museum Blog Posts: January 2008

Jontex Condom Ad - Possible Hoax — The image to the right shows what is supposedly a guerrilla marketing campaign by Jontex, a Brazilian brand of condoms owned by Johnson & Johnson. The campaign involves a cardboard cutout that can be positioned beneath the door of a bathroom stall. The Brazilian phrase translates to, "You do not know when it can be necessary." But strangely, Johnson and Johnson is denying responsibility for the ad. Or, at least, the folks who run the Johnson and Johnson blog claim it's not their…
Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2008.   Comments (3)

Gulf of Tonkin vs. Persian Gulf — In 1964 North Vietnamese forces supposedly attacked a US destroyer in the Gulf of Tonkin. President Johnson used this incident to obtain approval for the Vietnam War from Congress. But on Tuesday the National Security Agency declassified documents revealing -- to almost no one's surprise -- that the Gulf of Tonkin incident never happened. Also on Tuesday, by an odd coincidence, the US military released video of an incident in a different Gulf... the Persian one. The video shows…
Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2008.   Comments (4)

Two views from an airplane windo — One of these might be fake. Can you guess which? Update: My apologies. Apparently quite a few people didn't realize I was being sarcastic when I said "one of these might be fake." I thought it was pretty obvious both of them were fake. (Note that I didn't say 'only one is fake'.) To make up for it, here's a third view from an airplane window, and this one is definitely real. This photo was taken on July 13, 2004 aboard an AirTran flight from Atlanta to Orlando with 110 people on…
Posted: Thu Jan 10, 2008.   Comments (41)

Fictitious Countries — Elliot has posted five new articles in the hoaxipedia. His theme was fictitious countries. Or rather, countries of an ambiguous legal status. The Principality of New Utopia An island "country" in the Caribbean established in 1999 by Oklahoma businessman Howard Turney, who prefers to be known as HSH Prince Lazarus. The Dominion of Melchizedek A South Pacific island country, that happens to be entirely underwater. It was founded in 1987 by California father and son Evan and Mark…
Posted: Thu Jan 10, 2008.   Comments (14)


Gnome goes to Antarctica — Jerome Angus Graham III, a 25-centimeter-tall garden gnome, has been all around the world. But he hasn't been to Antarctica. Nor apparently, has any other gnome. But that's about to change. Jerome is heading to Antarctica, thanks to an invitation from Belgian travel firm Asteria Expeditions. Jerome will become "the first gnome to set foot on the frozen continent." The adventures of Jerome can be followed at travellinggnome.net. Earthtimes.org also reports that last year Jerome become…
Posted: Wed Jan 09, 2008.   Comments (3)

Name Change Prank — Robert Ashton and Aisling Davis have been playing tricks on each other for years. But when Robert dyed Aisling's hair blonde while she was asleep, she decided she needed to come up with something big to get him back. What she eventually dreamed up was to legally change Robert's name... to "Ima Stapler." The Halifax Courier reports: Aisling, of Sowerby Bridge, decided to take her revenge. She knew someone who had recently changed their middle name by deed poll and wondered if it would…
Posted: Wed Jan 09, 2008.   Comments (8)

Clarkson’s Account Gets Hacked — Jeremy Clarkson, host of Top Gear, (which you can see in America if you get BBC America on cable) publicly mocked a story about some computer discs being lost that held the bank details of 25 million people. He claimed that there was no way hackers would be able to use the information to withdraw money from people's accounts. To show how certain he was of this, he published his own account code and routing number. A few days later, according to Clarkson: "I opened my bank statement…
Posted: Tue Jan 08, 2008.   Comments (8)

I Buy Strays — The latest hoax website doing the rounds is IBuyStrays.com. I posted a page about it in the hoaxipedia. The site purports to be a business that buys people's unwanted pets and resells them to research labs. Animal lovers, of course, are up in arms about this. It's pretty obvious the site is a fake. Its over-the-top tone, if nothing else, gives it away: You can enjoy their wonderful puppy / kitten stage and then reap a cash reward for having grown such a fine specimen. Start over…
Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2008.   Comments (1)

Phantom Tent City on Roof — According to a rumor that circulates among the population of South Carolina's Hilton Head Island, there's a group of Mexican immigrants living on top of one of the local supermarkets. It may be the Bi-Lo Supermarket, or the Port Royal Plaza, or the Harris Teeter. Supposedly this tent city of roof-living immigrants tapped into the store's electricity and even diverted the air conditioning system to cool their tents. The Island Packet News is pretty sure that the story of the rooftop…
Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2008.   Comments (6)

Virgin Mary on Living Room Wall — A New Mexico family reports that an image of the Virgin Mary has appeared in the pattern of the texture of their wall. Their granddaughter says, "I think God is trying to tell us something, like a message from heaven." Maybe that message is, "Don't get a job applying wall texture." Is it just me, or are these Virgin Mary sightings getting harder and harder to see? I can barely make this one out at all. Bob forwarded me the link with the comment, "How ridiculous would a 'sighting' of…
Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2008.   Comments (21)

Is Mad Money based on the Brassiere Brigade? — Happy New Years everyone! My apologies for the absence of posts for the past week. I was on vacation, visiting family on the east coast and in Arizona. One month ago I posted about a group of female criminals from the 1950s called the "Brassiere Brigade." They stole money from the counting room of a telephone company, where they worked, by smuggling rolls of quarters out in their bras. I only discovered the story of these women by accident when I came across a reference to them in an…
Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2008.   Comments (14)

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