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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Hate Crimes/Terror
A Visit from the Secret Service — A couple of stories about writers receiving visits from the Secret Service have been getting a lot of attention in the blogosphere, and a lot of people have been wondering if they're real or fake. The first case involves fanfic writer Annie Sewell-Jennings who posted an entry on her blog in which she satirically prayed that Bush would die. A couple of weeks later, according to her, "the Secret Service showed up on my mother's front door to talk to me about what I said about the…
Posted: Mon Nov 01, 2004.   Comments (11)

Transformers Comic Book Predicted 9/11 — Here's something that brings back memories of the Nostradamus predictions that swirled around in the weeks after 9/11. Some guy is claiming that comic book artist Simon Furman predicted 9/11 in a Transformers comic book published on Sep. 14, 1991. His main proof: a picture of a transformer (rodimus prime) hanging between the destroyed towers of the World Trade Center. He's selling the comic book that contains this picture (as well as some other stuff) on eBay UK. He launches into some…
Posted: Mon Aug 23, 2004.   Comments (15)

Hoax Execution and ABC News — Today ABC News sent a camerateam around to my house to interview me about the hoax execution of Benjamin Vanderford. Vanderford used special-effects to stage his own execution by Islamic militants, then uploaded footage of the scene onto file-sharing networks, and waited for the media to bite. It took three months, but the media finally did bite, reporting it as an actual execution yesterday. At which point, Vanderford confessed to the hoax. I got a call from ABC this morning asking if…
Posted: Sat Aug 07, 2004.   Comments (11)

Fake Terrorism Drill — This should win some kind of award for stupidity. Government officials in Carter County, Tenn. were settling down to their meeting about property taxes when armed intruders burst into the room, fired shots into the air, and proceeded to take hostages. "There will be no new taxes, everyone here is going to vote no," one intruder shouted. People panicked and rushed for cover. But no need. Turns out it was just a "drill" orchestrated by the local Emergency Management Director. Problem is,…
Posted: Thu Aug 05, 2004.   Comments (2)


Terror in the Skies — A story published on the Women Wall Street website about a possible new terrorist threat has been setting the blosophere abuzz. The story, written by Annie Jacobsen, describes her experiences on a four-hour plane ride during which a group of 14 Syrian men began to act suspiciously (in her eyes), whispering to each other and making frequent trips to the bathroom. After the plane landed, Jacobsen did some investigating and learned that authorities are worried about gangs of terrorists…
Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2004.   Comments (19)

Some Terror and War Related Hoaxes — While I was away in Virginia I got behind on posting and didn't note some terror/war related hoaxes occurring in the news. So for the sake of completeness, here's a quick rundown of these stories. First we had Marine Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun, a soldier in Iraq suspected of faking his own abduction (tip: if you're going to fake your abduction, don't call your family on your cellphone while you're supposed to be abducted). Then there was the bizarre case of American soldier-of-fortune…
Posted: Fri Jul 16, 2004.   Comments (0)

Terror Email Hoax — A lot of people in New York have been getting an email warning them not to ride the subways this Friday because terrorists may be planning a big attack. It's your typical I-heard-it-from-a-friend-of-a-friend nonsense, laced with a liberal helping of numerology (Friday being 6/11, WTC attack 9/11, Madrid bombing 3/11), plus bogus information (the city hasn't ordered a couple thousand extra body bags). You can read the full email over at Gawker. The New York City Police insist that they…
Posted: Thu Jun 10, 2004.   Comments (0)

Abu Ghraib Prison Fantasy Camp — Something like this was inevitable, I suppose. It's the Abu Ghraib Iraqi Prison Fantasy Camp, situated in scenic Mountain Home, Idaho. I'm assuming this was inspired by Rush Limbaugh's recent comments about the torture scandal. According to the website: "Just want to 'blow off some steam' (as Rush Limbaugh so correctly put it)? Abu Ghraib Fantasy Camp is here for you! (actual opening date set for Summer '04). At Abu Ghraib Fantasy Camp... you'll find dozens of 'Iraqi prisoners' you'll…
Posted: Tue May 11, 2004.   Comments (7)

Updates from the War Against Terror — Here are a couple of news reports that are deeply disturbing on many different levels. First, a story from Macedonia where the police have admitted that seven Pakistani 'terrorists' they gunned down two years weren't terrorists at all. The seven men were actually completely innocent would-be immigrants who were lured to Macedonia with the promise of being granted access to Western Europe. The Macedonian police then killed them and created a phony story about how they were terrorists in…
Posted: Sun May 02, 2004.   Comments (7)

Fake Abductions More Common Than Most People Realize — The abduction of Audrey Seiler, and subsequent revelation that she had faked the abduction herself, has been generating a lot of media attention. But in an interview with the Newhouse News Service, Ben Radford, managing editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine, points out that cases like this are far more common than most people realize. By his estimate, they occur about three of four times a month, but most of the cases slip under the media's radar. In the early stages of the Seiler case,…
Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2004.   Comments (0)

Hate Crime or Hoax Crime? — On March 9 Kerri Dunn, a psychology professor at Claremont McKenna College east of LA, reported that her car had been vandalized and covered with racist graffiti. Now the police suspect that Ms. Dunn, who often spoke out against racism, may have staged the crime herself. Apparently some witnesses claim that the car was already covered with graffiti when she pulled into the college parking lot where the crime supposedly took place. She denies this, of course. So we'll have to wait and…
Posted: Wed Mar 24, 2004.   Comments (4)

Black SpongeBob — Back in February if you were shopping for a Valentine's Day card at Wal-Mart, you might have been able to pick up a card that showed a black 'Sambo' version of SpongeBob Squarepants. Wal-Mart officials report that it was quite a popular item. Amazingly only one person complained about the blatantly racist image. But when the manufacturer of the card found out about the card, they hit the roof, because a Black SpongeBob was definitely not what they had ordered from the printer. The…
Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2004.   Comments (11)

Columbine Paintball — Here's a site that's in incredibly bad taste, but it is DEFINITELY a hoax. It's Columbine Paintball. It purports to be a paintball arena in Cheyenne, Wyoming that allows you to play a paintball game inside a recreation of the Columbine high school. As I said, it's a hoax.
Posted: Sun Dec 14, 2003.   Comments (7)

Think of the Children — Think of the Children: Here's a British group advocating the use of mob violence and vigilante justice against anyone even suspected of committing a crime against a child. Punish first, deliberate about possible guilt or innocence later, seems to be their philosophy.
Posted: Wed Sep 24, 2003.   Comments (0)

Another 9/11 Hoax — Here's yet another 9/11 hoax. Cyril Kendall has been sentenced to 11 to 33 years in prison for claiming that his son Wilfred died in the attacks on the World Trade Center. Because of his claim he got $160,000 from the Red Cross, which he used to buy a new car. The only problem: he never had a son named Wilfred. (Story in the NY Times, Reg. Req.).
Posted: Wed Sep 17, 2003.   Comments (0)

9/11 Hoax on LiveJournal — A hoax involving 9/11 has just been exposed on LiveJournal. It appears there was once a LiveJournal user named Flashman, aka Anthony Joseph Pereira. But on Sept. 11 a friend of his, Rhyein, posted that he had died rushing into one of the burning World Trade Center Towers trying to save people. This caused an outpouring of grief from the LiveJournal community. But some people began to become suspicious when they realized that Anthony Joseph Pereira was never listed in the official lists…
Posted: Wed Sep 17, 2003.   Comments (0)

Long-Lost Daughter Hoax — Woman cruelly poses as long-lost daughter of couple. Who knows what deranged motive was behind what she did. The woman, Donna Walker, has now been arrested.
Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2003.   Comments (1)

911 Survivor a Hoax? — The team of developers on this website claim to be creating a game called '911 Survivor' that allows you to simulate being inside the burning World Trade Center. Reacting to this, quite a few people have immediately speculated that it must be a hoax. But looking through the site, I suspect it isn't. Instead it seems to be some kind of art project designed to make people question the boundaries drawn between real-reality and media-reality.
Posted: Mon Jul 28, 2003.   Comments (0)

Terrorism Hoaxes — Atlanta Journal-Constitution columnist muses on when pranks and hoaxes can get out of hand... as in the case of terrorist hoaxes
Posted: Thu Sep 19, 2002.   Comments (0)

Terrorist Funny Money — Here's an odd report from the frontlines of the war against terrorism in Argentina (quoted from Agence France Presse):"Authorities said they found fake US dollar bills bearing the portraits of terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein in the home of a possible suspect in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish center here. Presumably meant for propaganda purposes, the fake money was found along with numerous Arab documents and visa forms filled out by Lebanese…
Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2002.   Comments (1)

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