The Museum of Hoaxes
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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Videos
Giant Eel — A pair of videos that seemed to show a giant "human sized eel" in New Zealand's Manawatu River went viral in the past week. It caught the attention of a viral video show, Right This Minute, who contacted the two young men (brothers Tim and Ray Hamilton) who filmed the footage and asked them for the right to air it on TV. At which point, Tim and Ray confessed that the footage was fake. They had filmed the eel in a bathtub and then composited that footage with shots of the river and Ray throwing bread at the imaginary eel. They created the fake videos, they told stuff.co.nz, in order… Continue…
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014.   Comments (0)

Real video, fake story — The sex tape "sweeping the internet" that allegedly shows a 26 (or 35)-year-old teacher sleeping with a 16-year-old student actually shows a fling between a woman (who's not a teacher) and an adult college student. It's not clear how the fake story got attached to the video, but the story definitely boosted the video's popularity. [gawker.com]
Posted: Tue Nov 04, 2014.   Comments (0)

The Chicago River Hippo — The mystery of the Chicago River hippo has been solved. The hippo first came to the public's attention on September 15, when a video of it swimming in the Chicago River was posted to YouTube by "Chris O" (who had never posted anything to YouTube before). Two weeks later, this was followed by a second hippo video, now uploaded by "Matt ZB80." Again, it was Matt's first and only video. Pretty much everyone was skeptical of the idea that there really was a hippo loose in the Chicago River. The police noted that there were no reports of a wild animal in the river. And a… Continue…
Posted: Sat Oct 11, 2014.   Comments (0)

Gigantic Tortoise Found on Mt. Etna — A video circulating on Italian news sites shows what appears to be a gigantic tortoise being transported on a truck. An accompanying story explains that this tortoise "of colossal dimensions" was found recently at the base of Mt. Etna. A helicopter full of Japanese tourists spotted the creature. At first they thought it was a large, dark rock, until they noticed it was moving. The helicopter pilot alerted the earthquake authorities, who arrived and discovered that it was a gigantic…
Posted: Wed May 14, 2014.   Comments (0)


High School Football Player Throws 40-yard Pass… To Himself — Last week a Vine video of high-school football player Gary Haynes (of Manvel Texas High) throwing a 40-yard pass to himself went viral, sparking much discussion about whether the pass was real or fake. In order to determine whether such a throw to oneself is possible some people have been performing all kinds of calculations trying to take into account vertical distance, acceleration due to gravity, weight of the ball, time from peak to ground, etc. The general consensus is that…
Posted: Wed May 14, 2014.   Comments (0)

The Escherian Stairwell — Hidden away in a building at the Rochester Institute of Technology is a little-known marvel called the "Escherian Stairwell." It seems to defy the laws of physics, because when you walk up it, you arrive back at the same place where you started. Don't believe me? Just watch this video from RIT's "Can You Imagine" series in which it was featured. Okay, so maybe the Escherian Stairwell is not a real thing. The real story here is that the video about it was created by Michael Lacanilao…
Posted: Tue May 06, 2014.   Comments (1)

First Kiss — Director Tatia Pilieva recently released a video showing 20 strangers who were paired up and then asked to kiss each other. The video quickly went viral, with currently over 37 millions views on YouTube. But now the video is being outed as a kind of hoax because while it is true that the people were all strangers to each other, they were also professional performers. And the whole video was an ad for clothes, paid for by Wren Studio which is promoting its "Fall 14 collection". Amanda…
Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2014.   Comments (0)

HUVr Board — On March 3 a video appeared online (with an accompanying website) announcing that a company had created an actual working hoverboard (aka HUVr Board), of the kind seen in the 1989 movie Back to the Future II, using antigravity technology. The video immediately went viral, with over 3 million views already on YouTube. As many have noted, the video is clearly fake. No one has created a working hoverboard. But it was an impressive fake. Especially noteworthy is the number of celebrities…
Posted: Wed Mar 05, 2014.   Comments (0)

The Screaming Ghost in Room 209 — The story here is that this video supposedly comes from security camera footage of a Sep. 14, 2003 paranormal event at a Wingate Hotel in Illinois. Though it wasn't until Sep 2012 that it was posted on YouTube. Screaming was heard coming from room 209. But no one was checked into that room. So some guy named John (a security guard?) is sent to investigate. He enters the room and reports that the carpet has been ripped up, the shower is on, and all the furniture is turned upside down.…
Posted: Sat Oct 26, 2013.   Comments (8)

Telekinetic Coffee Prank — The video of the "Telekinetic Coffee Shop Prank" has gotten over 30 millions views on YouTube in 4 days. So it's definitely served its purpose, which is to promote the upcoming release of the Carrie remake. A lot of people have questioned whether the customers in the coffee shop were real or actors. But according to Andrea Morales, the actress who played the telekinetic coffee woman, the customers definitely were real. She says in an interview with the NY Daily News, "We got some…
Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2013.   Comments (1)

The man inside the cube — A video recently uploaded to YouTube claims to document the living arrangements of "Dave," an artist who supposedly lives inside the Astor Place Cube in New York City. It doesn't take a lot of critical thinking skills to realize this is a joke. (The cube, in reality, is welded shut.) But it's an amusing concept. The video is a viral marketing stunt for a site called Whil.com, which is mentioned at the end of the video. Honestly, I'm not sure what whil.com does. They claim to be "a…
Posted: Thu Oct 03, 2013.   Comments (0)

Twerking Girl Catches Fire Hoax — On Sep 3, Caitlin Heller posted a video on youtube that she titled, "Worst Twerk Fail EVER - Girl Catches Fire!" She further explained: "I tried making a sexy twerk video for my boyfriend and things got a little too hot " The video quickly went viral, accumulating 9 million views in less than a week, and getting airtime on numerous media outlets. But last night, "Caitlin Heller" appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and the hoax was revealed. Her real name was Daphne Avalon. She was a…
Posted: Tue Sep 10, 2013.   Comments (0)

Failed Marriage Proposal — Cadbury only made a half-hearted attempt to disguise that this clip is really an ad for their "Bournville" chocolates, which they're promoting with the tagline "Not So Sweet." Halfway through the clip, a small train chugs through the scene, and painted on its side is, "Bournville -- Not So Sweet."
Posted: Fri Aug 23, 2013.   Comments (0)

Jumping Cow UFO Video — A video posted to youtube about two weeks ago shows a strange light in the sky near Stamford in the UK. Then it pans down to show a herd of cows, and then one of the cows kind of jumps up in the air. So the cow must be jumping for one of these reasons: it's really happy it's being lifted up by the tractor beam of a UFO it's a CG effect The answer, according to video analysts that the Huffington Post talked to, is that it's a CG effect. The Stamford Mercury speculates that the video…
Posted: Tue Aug 20, 2013.   Comments (1)

Marshmallow Farming — A video of a news segment about marshmallow farming in North Carolina recently appeared on youtube: It looks like it was inspired by the BBC's famous Swiss Spaghetti Harvest April fool's day segment. The reporter identifies himself as being from Channel 9 news in Iredell County. But there's no info about what year this first aired. So I sent the station an email to find out what they might know.
Posted: Thu Apr 25, 2013.   Comments (1)

Pig Rescues Baby Goat Hoax — Back in September 2012, a video was uploaded to youtube showing a pig rescuing a baby goat that was supposedly stuck in a pond at a petting zoo. The video got millions of views on youtube and was widely aired in the media (including being shown on Good Morning America, the NBC Nightly News, and Fox News). Yesterday, it was revealed to be entirely staged. It was created for a Comedy Central series, "Nathan For You," which is debuting this week (thus the timing of the reveal). The pig…
Posted: Wed Feb 27, 2013.   Comments (1)

Car goes through ice on live TV — Although this may appear to be footage from a newscast, it's actually a video purposefully designed to go viral, created by a Danish pr firm calling itself PublicAttack. On its youtube page you can find the same actor appearing in its other videos. The car going through the ice is apparently a CG effect.
Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2013.   Comments (0)

UFO Over Santa Clarita — What part of this UFO sighting has been faked? The answer is that the UFOs are, of course, fake, but so is everything else. Every part of this video — the car, the scenery, the clouds — is CGI. Wired explains: "UFO Over Santa Clarita" was a painstakingly crafted joke played by Aristomenis "Meni" Tsirbas, the director of the 2007 computer-animated film Battle for Terra who has also contributed visual effects and animation work to movies like Titanic and Hellboy and several Star Trek…
Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2013.   Comments (0)

The Coke Bag Hoax — Recently a video began circulating that appeared (despite suspiciously poor production values) to be an advertisement by Coca-Cola announcing a new "Coca-Cola-Bag." The idea was to do away with selling Coke in bottles and switch to biodegradable plastic bags made "in the unique Coca-Cola bottle shape." The video claimed the idea came from Central America where many consumers supposedly already buy Coke in plastic bags in order to avoid paying the bottle deposit. Gizmodo, Digital…
Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2012.   Comments (4)

The Malfunctioning Oil Rig Drink Dispenser Hoax — On June 7, an Occupy Seattle activist, Logan Price, posted a video online that appeared to show an embarrassing scene from a private party of Shell Oil executives. Price explained, on his twitter page, that he had managed to infiltrate the party, which was intended to celebrate the launch of Shell's Arctic drilling program, and which was hosted at the top of the Seattle Space Needle. The centerpiece of the party was a sculpture shaped like an iceberg, topped by a miniature oil rig…
Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2012.   Comments (0)

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