The Museum of Hoaxes
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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Photos/Videos
Jennifer Love Hewitt’s Breasts Disappear Before Our Eyes — In an ad that ran in Entertainment Weekly, Jennifer Love Hewitt's breasts were noticeably smaller than they were in the same ad that ran just about everywhere else (including, briefly, on this site). I suspect this was done by some marketing person in order to give bloggers an excuse to write about Jennifer Love Hewitt's breasts, and post comparison photos. I fell for the ruse. (via Huffington Post)
Posted: Tue Apr 10, 2012.   Comments (4)

Ridiculously Photogenic Guy vs. Gorgeous Guy — If you follow internet memes at all, you're going to be aware of 'Ridiculously Photogenic Guy'. The title has been attached to 25-year-old Zeddie Little of New York. A picture of him was taken while he was running a 10k race in South Carolina. He seemed to look upbeat and well-composed, while everyone else looked like they were suffering. Someone uploaded the picture to reddit, with the comment, "My friend calls him 'Mr Ridiculously Photogenic Guy'". The image and title promptly went…
Posted: Mon Apr 09, 2012.   Comments (0)

The Patriarch’s Expensive Gold Watch — Sloppy Photoshopping: The Russian Orthodox Church recently posted a picture on its website of Patriarch Kirill during a 2009 meeting with Vladimir Putin. The photo wouldn't have caused any controversy — except that bloggers noticed a difference between the Patriarch's arm and the reflection of the arm on the shiny surface of the table. The reflection showed an expensive watch on his wrist. Oops. The watch was a gold Breguet watch valued at $30,000. Links: BBC, ABC News. (via Accipiter…
Posted: Fri Apr 06, 2012.   Comments (0)

The Japanese Moon Melon — This picture and caption has been circulating around the internet recently: This a Moon Melon , scientifically knows as asidus. This fruit grows in some parts of Japan , and it's known for it's weird blue color. What you probably don't know about this fruit, is that it can switch flavors after you eat it. Everything sour will taste sweet, and everything salty will taste bitter, and it gives water a strong orange-like taste. This fruit is Very expensive. It costs about ¥16000 JPY…
Posted: Fri Apr 06, 2012.   Comments (3)


A Bullfighter Repents — The following photo and caption has recently begun to circulate online. It's all over Facebook. "And suddenly, I looked at the bull. He had this innocence... that all animals have in their eyes, and he looked at me with this pleading. It was like a cry for justice, deep down inside of me. I describe it as being like a prayer - because if one confesses, it is hoped, that one is forgiven. I felt like the worst shit on earth."
 This photo shows the collapse of Torrero Alvaro Munera,…
Posted: Wed Mar 07, 2012.   Comments (4)

Photoshopping the Classics — Italian artist Anna Utopia Giordano (great name... can that be the name she was born with?) has created a series of works that comment on the media obsession with photoshopping models to look thin and flawless. She's taken famous classical nudes and made them thinner. So Botticelli's Venus gets slimmed down for the beach, as does Francesco Hayez's Venus. The New York Daily News quotes her as saying: Art is always in search of the perfect physical form. It has evolved through history,…
Posted: Tue Mar 06, 2012.   Comments (1)

What Was The First Ever Photoshopped Image? — The Daily Mail recently posted an article online about the early history of photo fakery. The Daily Mail doesn't exactly have a reputation for quality journalism, so it shouldn't be that surprising that the article starts off with an historical error. It claims that an image (shown below) of Abraham Lincoln posing in a 'heroic' stance "could be the first ever Photoshopped image." I understand the Daily Mail is using 'photoshopped' as a generic term to mean an image altered by…
Posted: Fri Mar 02, 2012.   Comments (2)

The 1% Tip Hoax — Last week an image showing the "tip" left by a rich banker who had dined at a Newport Beach restaurant spread around the internet. The financial tip was slightly less than 1%, on a bill of over $100, but the patron also left a life-advice tip: "GET A REAL JOB". Naturally, the image provoked the customary rage reaction from netizens. The image originally was posted on a blog called "Future Ex-Banker" run by an anonymous blogger who said he worked in the corporate office of a bank for…
Posted: Thu Mar 01, 2012.   Comments (5)

Clayton Sotos, Fartographer — Someone has gone to a bunch of trouble to make it seem as if Dell produced an ad featuring "Visual Innovator" Clayton Sotos. The ad has high production values, and there's an accompanying website showcasing some of Sotos's work. The joke is that Sotos photographs people farting. Dell insists they're not responsible for the ad. They posted this statement on their twitter page: "This video is in no way affiliated with Dell, but it's great to see creative professionals get inspiration…
Posted: Thu Feb 23, 2012.   Comments (0)

Should disclaimers be required for photoshopped ads? — Rep. Katie Hobbs has introduced a bill into the Arizona state legislature that would require advertisers to put the following disclaimer on advertisements if the image in the ad was "photoshopped" (link: zacentral.com): "Postproduction techniques were made to alter the appearance in this advertisement. When using this product, similar results may not be achieved." Similar legislation has been introduced in the UK and France, its purpose being to try to counteract the social pressure on…
Posted: Thu Feb 16, 2012.   Comments (3)

Beyonce had her baby. Satan is on Earth. — On Jan. 11, TMZ posted a photo of the sign outside the Beulah Hill Baptist Church, which apparently bore a nice message inspired by the recent birth of Beyonce's baby: "BEYONCE HAD HER BABY. SATAN IS ON EARTH."
Posted: Mon Jan 23, 2012.   Comments (5)

Sounds of the Apocalypse, aka Strange Sounds Heard Around the World — MadCarlotta sent me an interesting video: The premise of the video (which has over 1 million views) is that people around the world are hearing eerie groaning sounds that seem to rise up from the ground and echo through the sky. My first thought was that it sounds like the noise my tankless water heater makes on cold days. So if anyone in La Mesa is hearing eerie noises echoing through the neighborhood, I'm the culprit. Is the 'strange sounds' video a hoax? Seems to be. Some of the…
Posted: Sat Jan 21, 2012.   Comments (28)

Mitt Romney gets a shoeshine — In recent days, a photo of Mitt Romney that appears to show him getting a shoe shine as his private jet waits has been spreading around the internet. It's been popular with anyone who doesn't much like Romney because it seems to capture the swanky lifestyle he enjoys as a 0.001 percenter. But, in reality, this photo is a case of 'real picture, false caption'. The picture dates to 2008 and actually shows Romney sitting for a security check before boarding a plane in Denver, Colorado.…
Posted: Wed Jan 18, 2012.   Comments (1)

The Navalny Affair — Supporters of Vladimir Putin have been caught in a flat-footed attempt at character assassination. Wanting to smear blogger Alexei Navalny, who's been a fierce critic of Putin's government, they created a picture showing Navalny meeting with the exiled oligarch Boris Berezovsky. The implication was that Berezovsky was funding Navalny. Then Putin's supporters published the picture in one of the party newspapers. But the picture was a clumsy fake. The original, undoctored version of the…
Posted: Wed Jan 18, 2012.   Comments (2)

Evidence of Extraterrestrials in North Korea? — The Alien Disclosure Group (ADG) UK has posted a video on youtube in which they suggest that the funeral of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il may have been attended by extraterrestrials. Or very tall earthlings. One or the other. The ADG seems eager to see aliens in any mystery. But their video does highlight two legitimate items of strangeness from Kim Jong-Il's funeral. The first is that there apparently really was an extremely tall person standing in the crowd watching Kim…
Posted: Wed Jan 04, 2012.   Comments (5)

Disappearing Political Cleavage — Usually when politicians become the victims of photo retouchers it's because they've become undesirable to someone in power, and so they're summarily removed from the photo. It's far less common for their images to be retouched in order to desexualize them. This is usually the fate of actresses and models. But this is what happened recently to Rathika Sitsabaiesan, a young Canadian MP. Her cleavage was erased from the image of her that appears on the House of Commons website. The…
Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011.   Comments (2)

Obama vs. Perry: “Boys Will Be Boys” — Status: Real Photos, False Captions The political dirty tricks season is upon us again, and so we get the image above, which has recently been circulating around conservative blogs. (Thanks to Gayl for forwarding it to me.) Its intent is obvious: to show that Rick Perry was serious and heroic as a young man, whereas Barack Obama was a bit of a punk. The pictures themselves are real. The picture of Obama was taken in 1980 by Lisa Jack when both were freshmen at Occidental College in…
Posted: Tue Aug 30, 2011.   Comments (3)

The Fake Photos of Hurricane Irene — Reality Rule 4.2: Should a suitably dramatic picture of a major event not exist, one will be created. This rule was in full effect during Hurricane Irene, as twitterers by the thousands shared fake hurricane photos with each other. The NY Times Technology Blog has collected some of the more popular ones: Widely claimed to show Irene approaching North Carolina, this is really a photo of a storm approaching Pensacola, Florida around three weeks ago. An image of the East River flooding…
Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011.   Comments (4)

RIP Geoffrey Crawley — Geoffrey Crawley, who played a role in debunking the Cottingley Fairy hoax, died recently on October 29. The New York Times ran an interesting article about his life. From the article: From the mid-1960s to the mid-1980s, Mr. Crawley was editor in chief of the magazine British Journal of Photography. His 10-part series exposing the Cottingley fairy photographs as fakes appeared there in 1982 and 1983. Mr. Crawley had been asked to determine the authenticity of the photos in the late…
Posted: Tue Nov 16, 2010.   Comments (7)

Twiggy ad ruled misleading — The UK Advertising Standards Authority has ruled that an advertisement featuring Twiggy is misleading. The ad has Twiggy claiming that "Olay is my secret to brighter-looking eyes." In fact, the brightness of her eyes in the photo is due to digital manipulation. Link: sky.com Real Twiggy Fake Twiggy
Posted: Wed Dec 16, 2009.   Comments (6)

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