The Museum of Hoaxes
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Hoax Museum Blog Posts From
April 2012
Driving into the mouth of the tunnel
Posted by The Curator on Mon Apr 30, 2012
It would be cool if there really was a tunnel entrance somewhere in the world that looked like this. But this is one of those brought-to-you-by-photoshop images. The original is an image showing a billboard created in March 2007 by the Austrian ad agency Demner, Merlicek & Bergmann for the restaurant chain Oldtimer. (link: What's puzzling me is whether the original image is itself photoshopped? Did this Oldtimer billboard ever exist in real life, or is the photo just a concept piece? I can't find any pictures showing the Oldtimer billboard from a different angle. I can't find any sources that list…
Mexican Woman isn’t pregnant with nonuplets
Posted by The Curator on Mon Apr 30, 2012
From Mexico, last week, came news of a multiple-birth hoax. (posted by Smerk in the forum). Thirty-two-year-old Karla Vanessa Perez of Coahuila claimed she was pregnant with nonuplets (six girls and three boys) and would give birth on May 20. This was dutifully reported by Mexico's main broadcaster Televisa as well as various newspapers. She gave welfare officials some kind of ultrasound video (not clear where she got that), so her claim wasn't entirely without evidence. But when Mexican newspapers investigated, they quickly learned she wasn't pregnant. Sounds like it was her own mother who outed her. From "Her mother, Francisca CastaƱeda, told El Diario de Coahuila that Perez has three children, ages…
Categories: Birth/Babies Comments (1)
Controversy over Egyptian ‘Farewell Intercourse Law’
Posted by The Curator on Mon Apr 30, 2012
Late last week a strange story emerged alleging that Egypt's parliament was considering a 'Farewell Intercourse Law' to make it legal for Egyptian husbands to have sex with their dead wives for up to six hours after death. Why six hours? I assume to make sure the tender last moments are wrapped up before rigor mortis fully sets in. Though according to Wikipedia, rigor mortis begins after 3 to 4 hours, so that might be a bit awkward. Naturally a lot of news orgs ran the story without bothering to do any kind of fact-checking. Then they had to backpedal after it became apparent there wasn't any kind of truth to the report.
Categories: Death, Sex/Romance Comments (2)
The Mystery of the AB-hancer
Posted by The Curator on Sun Apr 29, 2012
An ad for a product called the "AB-hancer" appeared online back in March 2011 and quickly went viral. The text of the ad made it pretty obvious that this wasn't a real product — specifically where the text says, "Recommended by pseudo-athletes." There's also the fact that the product isn't available for purchase anywhere. Though inevitably a few people seemed to think the AB-hancer was real. But the mystery is: Where did this ad come from? Who created it? No one seems to know. Paul Lucas at theorizes that the image came from an old, out-of-print "prank box." Prank boxes are gag gift boxes that look…
The Mermaids of Zimbabwe
Posted by The Curator on Sat Apr 28, 2012
Ginny Stein reports for Australia's ABC News on the mermaids of Zimbabwe. Although Zimbabwe is landlocked, it's apparently home to many mermaids. And these aren't the friendly Disney kind of mermaids. These are evil, nasty creatures that live in ditches and creeks, kidnap people, and hold them prisoner for years. No Myth - Scourge of mermaids in Zimbabwe A mermaid is very mysterious creature. You can't really say what complexion it is, what colour it is. It can be like a white person, or an Arab, but one distinguishing factor is that they have long hair; very, very long hair, it is metres long." GINNY STEIN: Around these hills, Mr Manyonga…
Categories: Paranormal Comments (1)
Fast-Food Tattoo Guy
Posted by The Curator on Sat Apr 28, 2012
The "Fast-Food Tattoo Guy" image has been floating around the internet since 2009, at least. It's not a very good fake. Which is to say, it doesn't appear that many people have been led to believe, on the basis of this photo, that some large, cheeseburger-loving man actually decided to tattoo himself with the logos of fast-food restaurants. Nevertheless, I'm always curious about where these fake photos originally come from. In the case of this photo, I tracked down the original to a series of photos taken by photographer Philip Greenspun at the Newport Jazz Festival in 2005. He took several shots of this guy sitting on the beach, eating his food,…
Categories: Food, Photos/Videos Comments (0)
Bouncing Bear
Posted by The Curator on Thu Apr 26, 2012
This is one of those photos that looks so surreal you'd think it has to be photoshopped, but it's real. It was taken earlier today in Colorado. Although it looks like the bear might be bouncing on a trampoline, it's actually falling onto a thick mat: Bear tranquilized in tree near Williams Village The bear managed to climb up a tree near the dorms where it stayed for about two and a half hours. Wildlife officials were able to safely tranquilize the bear at 10:17 a.m. and the bear fell onto mats provided by the Recreation Center at approximately 10:28 a.m. "[The bear] was tranquilized by the…
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos Comments (3)
Woman dies after trying to live on sunlight alone
Posted by The Curator on Thu Apr 26, 2012
The NY Daily News is reporting (via the Tages-Anzeiger) that a Swiss woman died after deciding to embrace the philosophy of breatharianism and live on sunlight alone: Swiss woman dies after attempting to live on sunlight; Woman gave up food and water on spiritual journey The Zurich newspaper reported Wednesday that the unnamed Swiss woman in her fifties decided to follow the radical fast in 2010 after viewing an Austrian documentary about an Indian guru who claims to have lived this way for 70 years. Tages-Anzeiger says there have been similar cases of self-starvation in Germany, Britain and Australia. The prosecutors' office in the Swiss canton (state) of Aargau confirmed…
Categories: Food, Health/Medicine Comments (3)
Romney’s family misspells their last name
Posted by The Curator on Thu Apr 26, 2012
This image has been circulating online since February with the caption: Romney's family misspell their last name in the greatest Freudian slip in history. The Hill reports that it's fake. However, I don't yet know any further details — such as where the picture was taken. Nor have I seen the original yet. But I've got to say, assuming this is a fake image, it's a really good one. Both because it's very believable (it's easy to imagine that two kids could momentarily stand in the wrong place), and because it makes its point very clearly: That Romney is incredibly rich, and that he seems to prioritize the interests…
Categories: Photos/Videos, Politics Comments (1)
Start Cola Earlier, says the Soda Pop Board of America
Posted by The Curator on Thu Apr 26, 2012
At first glance, this appears to be a vintage ad by the "Soda Pop Board of America" extolling the virtues of drinking cola at an early age. It's been circulating around the internet for quite a while, during which time many sites have angrily responded to the claims made in the ad. For instance, the Queen Anne Chiropractic Center declared that the ad demonstrates "just how wicked the Mad Men of yesteryear were." The parenting blog wrote: "We all know that, on occasion, advertisements can offer some fairly crappy advice. Back in the day, though, ads had no shame." And offered the ad as evidence that, "Soda companies,…
Categories: Advertising, Food Comments (11)
Long-Tongue Girl
Posted by The Curator on Wed Apr 25, 2012
Exhibit A: This image has been floating around the internet for quite a while. Over four years, I would guess, which is a lifetime in internet years. I don't know why it caught my attention, but it did, and I decided to see if I could find any information about it. Or rather, although it's obvious the picture has been photoshopped, I was curious how much it had been altered. I soon dug up a second (seemingly earlier) version of the picture. Exhibit B: The girl's tongue is shorter here, but it's still very long. So is this the original…
Miss Travel calls itself "The #1 Travel Dating Site." But I'm not sure how many other travel dating sites there are. Is it the only one? The premise is that if you're an attractive person (but most likely a woman) who likes to travel, they'll pair you with a "generous" traveler who wants a traveling companion (a rich guy). So it's like a high-class escort service, trading travel for "companionship." The concept seemed a bit dubious to me, but as far as I can tell the site is legitimate. It's registered to InfoStream Group Inc., which is in the business of "millionaire & fantasy dating." They've had the site registered since 2001.…
The Fake Science Blog
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 24, 2012
The Fake Science Blog has been around for over two years, but I just found out about it. It describes itself as being "for when the facts are too confusing." Lots of great stuff! Seems to be a new post about once every 4 or 5 days. Here's a few samples:
Categories: Science Comments (1)
The ghost of Janis Joplin attends a party
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 24, 2012
Posted by "klove614" on reddit: "Going through pictures from the other night...holy shit" Reddit users quickly pointed out that the ghost in the background bears a strong resemblance to this poster of Janis Joplin:
Categories: Paranormal, Photos/Videos Comments (1)
The Taxidermied Zoo
Posted by The Curator on Mon Apr 23, 2012
This is a bit like something out of a Philip K. Dick novel -- The Dream Park El Janoob Zoo in the Gaza Strip can no longer afford to display live animals. And it's difficult to import animals into Gaza. So the zoo owner has decided to display taxidermied animals. An advantage of this is that zoo visitors can pet the animals, without having their limbs torn off, as might happen with live animals. Link: Al Arabiya
Categories: Animals Comments (3)
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