The Hoax Museum Blog
Happy Holidays (also seeking suggestions for the top ten hoaxes of 2005)
Posted by The Curator on Mon Dec 26, 2005
I've been ignoring the internet for the past few days because I've been too busy eating, drinking, and opening presents. So I'll wish everyone a belated Merry Christmas now, or whatever holiday you celebrate: Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Saturnalia—for all those ancient Romans out there (since I studied Latin for eight years, I consider myself an honorary ancient Roman)— or nothing at all. Although I was trying to ignore the outside world, it did manage to briefly track me down. A reporter from the Washington Post called to talk about the case of fraudulent cloning research in South Korea that's been making headlines. Here's what I said (that made it into the article):…
Who Should Win the Caption Contest?
Posted by The Curator on Tue Dec 20, 2005
I said that I would decide who should win the caption contest today. But I'm having a tough time making a decision because there are a number of good entries. So I've decided to make the contest more democratic and let the winner be decided by a vote. I've selected my top eight choices. Pick your favorite, and cast your vote. I'll let the voting run for a day or two. Update: As of Dec. 23, Kieran won the vote . Congratulations!
Posted by The Curator on Fri Dec 16, 2005
And the winner of the 'contest to pick a contest idea' was... ME!!! Yeah, apparently my proposal to have a caption contest was the overall favorite. So I'll be keeping the copy of the book (at least for now... I'll probably give it away later). Anyway, now on to the real contest. I've selected an image. The challenge is to think up a caption or accompanying text for the image. Or, if you're so inclined, you can photoshop the image. I don't mind. Just do something creative with it using whatever tools you have at hand (either words or an image editor). But if you photoshop the image, you'll need to upload it to a web…
A Contest To Think of Contest Ideas
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 14, 2005
I'm having a contest. The challenge is to help me think of contest ideas. I posted the full details in the Hoax Forum (but then it occurred to me that only registered members can post responses there, so I'm posting a brief announcement here too so that comments/ideas can be left in either place.) The basic challenge is to think of contest ideas. The one condition is that the contest has to generate responses, the best of which can be used as sidebar material somewhere in my archive of famous hoaxes throughout history. Like I said, full details are in the Hoax Forum.…
The Situation with Tucker Carlson
Posted by The Curator on Sun Nov 27, 2005
I've never watched The Situation with Tucker Carlson before. It's on too late for me. All I know is that Tucker is that guy who wears a bowtie. But tomorrow (Monday) I'll be a guest on the show. Tucker will chat with me for about five minutes about the history of hoaxes. Or, at least, that's what I've been told. The interview will be done via video feed, so I'll be sitting in San Diego and he'll be in New York. Look for me to be on at around 11:40 pm (eastern time). Update: I've been bumped from Monday night. They tell me that I'll now be on Tuesday night.
Museum of Hoaxes Mentioned in the Wall Street Journal
Posted by The Curator on Wed Oct 26, 2005
I've learned that the Museum of Hoaxes got mentioned in the Wall Street Journal last week. The title of the article was "Photo Firms Hunt Copyright Violators" (October 19, 2005) by Vauhini Vara. I got included because of my brief fight with the Science & Society Picture Library over my use of the Cottingley Fairy images. Unfortunately the reporter didn't fully represent my side of the argument. Here are the relevant sections from the article: Bloggers, beware: That photo of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes on your Web site could be fodder for a lawsuit. Stock-photography companies like Getty Images Inc. and Corbis Corp. are using high-tech tools to crack down on Web…
Back From The Desert
Posted by The Curator on Tue Oct 18, 2005
I wasn't able to post for the past few days since I was out in the Anza Borrego desert (just outside of San Diego), where I spent a long weekend with my wife and parents at the Borrego Valley Inn. I got to see some incredible desert fauna while I was there, including coyotes, jack rabbits, tarantulas, red-tailed hawks, and roadrunners. Thankfully I didn't encounter any rattlesnakes. In the picture to the right I believe that I was looking at a Jumpin' Yuccy. Update: Here's a picture of the tarantula that I saw.…
What I Did In Pittsburgh
Posted by The Curator on Wed Oct 05, 2005
So I'm back from Pittsburgh where I was attending a memorial service for my great aunt who died recently at the age of 90. Though it was a sad occasion, it did give me a chance to catch up with a lot of family members, some of whom I haven't seen in over twenty years. (Like many families, funerals seem to be the only time when we all get together as a group.) I also took the opportunity to see some of the sights around Pittsburgh, such as the Pittsburgh Incline, the Andy Warhol Museum, and Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater.…
Posted by The Curator on Thu Sep 29, 2005
Posted by The Curator on Mon Sep 19, 2005
I received an email today from the person who runs the Online Gamers Anonymous site (about which I once posted an entry): Please remove On-Line Gamers Anonymous from you hoax website. Please inform me when this has been done. This is a REAL service provided for people who are addicted to computer/video games and have no where else to go. Their concern is that when people do a google search, they see the name of the site in question followed by "Museum of Hoaxes," which could imply that the site is a hoax. This issue has come up before, and it's a legitimate concern for people with real sites, so…
$100 Blog Contest
Posted by The Curator on Wed Sep 14, 2005
About a week ago I posted that my friend Dave had created a weblog to test some software that he'd developed. He's now running a contest with a $100 prize. This isn't a hoax. Basically all you have to do is register with his site and post an entry. If you post something, you get a chance to win the $100. Since no one has yet posted anything (and the contest has been running for a couple of days), your chances of winning are pretty good. The contest will end three days after the tenth post is created. (So, theoretically, your chances could be one in ten of winning.) I think Dave will accept almost anything as a…
Hippo Eats Dwarf Cover
Posted by The Curator on Wed Sep 07, 2005
Hippo Eats Dwarf now has a cover, thanks to the art department at Harcourt. This will almost definitely be the final cover unless (as my editor cautions) changes are made after the sales conference in October. Ideally one wants a cover that will make people curious enough to pick up the book and flip through it, and I think this does the trick. Oh, and I shouldn't forget to point out that the book can be pre-ordered on Amazon.
Hippo Eats Dwarf Completed
Posted by The Curator on Sun Sep 04, 2005
On Friday I sent in the final, fully edited manuscript of Hippo Eats Dwarf to my publisher. A few small things remain for me to do. For instance, I need to write the acknowledgments page. But basically it's completed. Now the publisher needs to finish the cover art and start formatting it to look like a real book. But the book has already been listed on Amazon, which means it can now be pre-ordered. So over the next seven months I'll be bugging people to pre-order it, since the more people pre-order it, the easier it is to convince bookstores to stock it and display it prominently. And at $10, it's a bargain. Here's the catalog copy for…
Posted by The Curator on Wed Aug 31, 2005
I haven't been able to post for the past few days. I received the edited manuscript of my book back from my publisher and have been going through it and approving/making the changes they suggested. They've given me a tight deadline, so I've been working away at that. But once this is done, I'm totally finished with the book. Anyway, on a different topic, my friend Dave (who writes software) asked me to link to his new site, and I promised I would. His site is called we rank. It uses the same software I use to run this site (Expression Engine), but he's trying to adapt it to allow people to rank comments and…
Museum Entry Tickets
Posted by The Curator on Fri Aug 12, 2005
Here's a curious email I just received: Hallo! My name is Wojciech Krajewski. I come from Poland. I'm collecting museum entry tickets. I would be very happy if I have got in my collection ticket from Yours. I hope that my favour won't be a problem for You and that you won't leave it without answer. I give my regards to you and thank you very much. I'd really like to help this guy out. But what should I send him?