The Museum of Hoaxes
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The Hoax Museum Blog
Hoaxes, mischief, and misinformation throughout history
From Couch Potato to Bodybuilder — JohnStoneFitness.com is a site that documents the remarkable physical transformation of a man named John Stone. Within the space of a few months he goes from being a pale, flabby, out-of-shape guy, into being a buff and muscular bodybuilder. Emily emailed me to ask if the site was for real. She felt that his muscle development happened a little too quickly to be believable, and quite a few people whom I've shown the site to have had the same reaction. But I would say it's definitely…
Posted: Mon Jan 19, 2004.   Comments (6)

My Pet Fat — This should be a joke, but I don't think it is. Apparently inspired by the pet rock phenomenon of decades ago, an entrepreneur is now trying to sell globs of artificial fat under the name 'My Pet Fat.' The gimmick is that carrying around this artificial fat will supposedly inspire you to eat less and thus lose unwanted body fat. This is so dumb that it has to be real.
Posted: Thu Jan 15, 2004.   Comments (6)

How Much For That State? — In the latest hoax to hit eBay, someone attempted to auction off the state of West Virginia. Bidding hit $100 million before the auction was yanked.
Posted: Thu Jan 15, 2004.   Comments (0)

Reporter in Trouble — Another journalist is in trouble for possible plagiarism and creating hoax stories. This time it's Jack Kelley of USA Today.
Posted: Wed Jan 14, 2004.   Comments (0)


Phantom is not a Hoax — Back in August I noted there were rumors that the Phantom game console was just a hoax. Turns out it's real.
Posted: Wed Jan 14, 2004.   Comments (0)

I See Jesus — Pareidolia is defined as the perception of meaningful images in random patterns. In other words, seeing things that aren't really there. For instance, people might see a face in a cloud. Or they might see the Virgin Mary in the window of a Boston hospital. When people start seeing religious images on the walls or windows of buildings, it almost always leads to good business for the business affected, as massive crowds flock there to see the image. So now there's a company calling itself…
Posted: Wed Jan 14, 2004.   Comments (0)

Floral Sculpture Clinic — I'm not sure if this is real or fake. The Floral Sculpture Clinic says that it will implant bone tissue sculpted into the shape of a flower beneath your skin. The result will be a visibly raised bony pattern on your skin. If real, it's very strange.Update: Boing Boing reports that the Floral Sculpture Clinic is indeed a hoax. It's part of a conceptual art project dreamed up by the Dutch artist Simone Van Bakel. The images of the inserted implants are photoshopped.
Posted: Wed Jan 14, 2004.   Comments (2)

The Indian Rope Trick — A new book by Peter Lamont chronicles the history of the Indian rope trick. According to him the trick is a hoax, not just in the sense that it's an illusion. Rather, in the sense that the trick never existed. It was never performed. In fact, it began its life in 1890 as the fictional creation of a Chicago reporter. The book is reviewed by The Guardian.
Posted: Wed Jan 14, 2004.   Comments (1)

Flatulent Technologies — Flatulent Technologies is a company that is committed to "extracting energy from everything that stinks or rots." Sounds like a great idea. The company's NYSE ticker symbol is even better: FART. Too bad a little disclaimer at the bottom of the company's webpage admits it's a parody.
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (2)

Kensington Runestone — The Kensington Runestone, unearthed in Minnesota in 1898 and hailed as evidence of the presence of Norse explorers in ancient America, is off on a grand tour. First stop Sweden.
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (0)

Real Dog — Why own a living, breathing dog that you have to feed every day, when you can own a RealDog instead?
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (2)


Fake UFO Photos — How to fake a UFO photo, courtesy of Skeptical Inquirer.
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (0)

Mokele-Mbembe — The Arizona Republic has a short piece on Mokele-Mbembe, the African Loch Ness Monster.
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (0)

Majestic Twelve — Anson also sent along a second site: Majestic Twelve. This is the webpage of a super-above-top secret organization that may or may not cooperate with aliens in the abduction of human beings.
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (0)

Haggis Hunt — Here's an interesting hoax website, courtesy of Anson Kennedy. It's haggishunt.com, which punctures the common misconception that a haggis is a sheep's stomach stuffed with meat and oatmeal. In reality (according to this site) a haggis is an extremely rare animal hunted by the Scottish. The site offers many educational haggis facts, such as that the sound the haggis is most sensitive to is plaid rubbing on underpants (I never knew!). And definitely check out the Haggis Cam.
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2004.   Comments (0)

Where Is My Gnome, Part 2 — A lot of people have been emailing me to let me know that the Where Is My Gnome site is part of a viral web campaign by Travelocity, but I've been too busy and never got around to updating that entry. But here's an article that explains the Gnome campaign.
Posted: Thu Jan 08, 2004.   Comments (2)

Foil Prank — Man leaves town and returns home to find everything in his apartment covered in tinfoil, everything except one lone book titled Cruel Tricks for Dear Friends.Update: The Black Table has posted an interview with the guy who actually dreamed up and carried out the foil prank, Lucas Trerice.
Posted: Thu Jan 08, 2004.   Comments (0)

Office Prank — April Fool's Day Office Prank. "Priceless."
Posted: Thu Jan 08, 2004.   Comments (0)

Mario 3 Time Attack Video — A 'time attack' video has been going around that appears to show someone completing every level of Mario 3 perfectly in 11 minutes. If you're a fan of Mario 3 it's apparently quite impressive. Unfortunately, the video is a fake.
Posted: Thu Jan 08, 2004.   Comments (2)

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