The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
 
The Hoax Museum Blog
Hoaxes, mischief, and misinformation throughout history
Register - Log-In - Password?
The Diaphote, a television hoax, 1880
war of the worlds
The night Martians invaded New Jersey, 1938
Sober Sue, the woman who never smiled, 1907

Stotham, Massachusetts: the town that didn't exist, 1920
The Cradle of the Deep, a literary hoax, 1929
Boy floats away in balloon, 2009
Old-Time Photo Fakery, 1900 to 1919
Tube of liquor hidden in prohibition-era boot, 1920s
Can a bar of soap between your sheets ease muscle cramps?
A black lion: real or fake?
Marlboro Marijuana Cigarettes
Posted by The Curator on Mon Jan 27, 2014
The latest fake news story to go viral claims that, due to the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, Philip Morris has decided to start selling Marlboro Marijuana Cigarettes, marketed under the brand name "Marlboro M". The fake news story was posted on the satire site "Abril Uno" on January 21st. From the article: Phillip Morris, the world’s biggest cigarette producer, announced today that they will join the marijuana legalization bandwagon and start producing marijuana cigarettes. Marketed under the brand “Marlboro M”, the cigarettes will be made available for sale through marijuana-licensed outlets in the state of Colorado, and the state of Washington when it becomes commercially legal there later this year... Since only tobacco products are…
This is not U2
Posted by The Curator on Sun Jan 26, 2014
Mysterious ways of Dave Fanning hoax; 2fm DJ passes off song by obscure English band as the latest single from U2. The Sunday Times (London) January 26, 2014 DUE TO a long friendship with U2, his radio show is always the first to play any new songs from the Dublin group. Earlier this month, however, U2 fans didn't find what they were looking for when Dave Fanning, the 2fm DJ, promised to play their new single - but instead spun a track from an unknown British band... What listeners actually heard was a song entitled Bad Machine by Dark Stares, a virtually unknown band from St Albans in London... Last week, Fanning dismissed the transmission as a…
Categories: Music Comments (2)
We Will All Be Microchipped!
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 24, 2014
Scare stories about how governments are going to force us all to be "microchipped like dogs" have been circulating for well over a decade. Mixed in with these stories have been Christian fundamentalist claims that implanted microchips are the "Mark of the Beast". The latest scare story to surface is an article (written in broken English) recently posted on topinfopost.com, claiming that "On May 2014, through Europe newborn children will be compelled to take in a subcutaneous RFID chip." Nope. Ain't happening. The photo accompanying the article actually shows a flexible "Biostamp" recently developed by the Massachusetts-based firm MC10. But don't worry. The fundamentalists are convinced that these "E-Tattoos" are also the…
Categories: Technology Comments (2)
Giant Red Palm Weevil Larva
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 24, 2014
An Italian newspaper has reported that firefighters near Naples recently discovered a giant larva of a Red Palm Weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus). The larva, which was as big as an adult pig, was still alive, and as the firefighters approached it, the thing emitted a shrill cry similar to the whinny of a horse. The larva appears to be a result of "radioactive gigantism" caused by toxic waste in the so-called "Land of Fires" region of southern Italy. It has been taken to the Naples Museum to be studied by entomologists. At least, this is what I could understand of the story with help from Google Translate. (Any corrections/additions from Italian speakers would be appreciated!) The entire story, of course,…
Categories: Animals Comments (0)
Theodore Roosevelt Rides a Moose
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jan 23, 2014
Theodore Roosevelt served as President of the United States for 8 years, from 1901-1909. He was, as Wikipedia notes, acclaimed for his "cowboy persona and robust masculinity." However, his masculinity was not so robust that he once rode a moose, despite what this photo appears to show. In 1912, Roosevelt split from the Republican Party, after having become unhappy with its increasingly conservative policies. He then ran for President as head of the newly formed Progressive Party. After forming this party, Roosevelt exuberantly proclaimed, "I'm feeling like a bull moose!" For which reason, the Progressive Party was often referred to as the "Bull Moose Party." Two months before the election, on Sep 8, 1912, the New York Tribune ran…
Categories: Photos/Videos Comments (3)
The Unfortunate Consequence of Ignoring Facebook Hoaxes
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jan 22, 2014
Hidden Valley Ranch Scented Candles
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jan 22, 2014
[via reddit]
Categories: Food Comments (0)
Beijing residents are not flocking to see virtual sunrises
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jan 21, 2014
Well, I fell for this. A recent article posted on the Daily Mail was headlined, "China starts televising the sunrise on giant TV screens because Beijing is so clouded in smog." An accompanying photo showed a giant TV screen in a smoggy Tiananmen Square showing a sunrise. The article elaborated: The smog has become so thick in Beijing that the city’s natural light-starved masses have begun flocking to huge digital commercial television screens across the city to observe virtual sunrises. The futuristic screens installed in the Chinese capital usually advertize tourist destinations, but as the season’s first wave of extremely dangerous smog hit – residents donned air masks and left their…
Categories: Journalism Comments (0)
Henry Clay Hooker and the Great Turkey Drive of 1866
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jan 21, 2014
Henry Clay Hooker (source: wikipedia) Henry Clay Hooker was a wealthy rancher in the Old West. He was known as the "cattle king of Arizona." Modern audiences may know him because he was played by Charlton Heston in the 1993 movie Tombstone. Perhaps the most famous part of Hooker's life story is the claim that he made his fortune by herding 500 turkeys over the Sierra Nevada mountain range into Nevada. The story goes that Hooker moved out to California from the East Coast as a young man. He opened a hardware store in Placerville, and was growing quite successful until tragedy struck in 1866 when his store and entire stock of goods burned to the ground,…
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales Comments (2)
This photo of "Hercules, the World's Biggest Dog" is one of the best known "hoax" viral images on the Web. It started circulating in early 2007, initially on its own, but soon the Internet had supplied an explanatory caption: Hercules: The World's Biggest Dog Ever According to Guinness World Records Hercules was recently awarded the honorable distinction of Worlds Biggest Dog by Guinness World Records. Hercules is an English Mastiff and has a 38 inch neck and weighs 282 pounds. With "paws the size of softballs" (reports the Boston Herald), the three-year-old monster is far larger and heavier than his breed's standard 200lb. limit. Hercules owner Mr. Flynn says that Hercules weight is natural and not induced by a bizarre diet: "I…
Squirrel AIDS is a hoax
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 17, 2014
The Ocean County Health Department of New Jersey recently began receiving numerous phone calls and emails from people worried about the health risk posed by squirrels with AIDS. Many parents asked whether they should allow their children to play outside. In response, the health department has posted a statement assuring the public that there is no such thing as 'Squirrel AIDS' or 'SQUAIDS'. Nor have there been any confirmed cases of illness transmitted to a human from a squirrel. No cases of squirrel-to-human disease transmission? I immediately thought, 'What about rabies?' But some googling reveals that although squirrels can theoretically contract rabies, it's very rare for them to do so. This is mostly because squirrels are quick enough to…
Categories: Health/Medicine Comments (0)
U.S. secretly run by Nazi space aliens, says Iranian news agency
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 17, 2014
Max Fisher of the Washington Post tells how Iran's Fars News Agency (which is often described as a "semi-official" news agency with ties to the government) recently revealed the shocking news that "The United States government has been secretly run by a 'shadow government' of space aliens since 1945." It seems that these aliens initially supported the Nazis, but switched to Team USA after that didn't work out. This information, says Fars, comes from NSA leaker Edward Snowden.
Calling 999 does not charge your mobile phone battery
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 17, 2014
Idiotic things people will believe: The Bedfordshire Police recently posted a statement on their website, informing everyone that calling 999 and then disconnecting immediately will not actually boost the battery life of your mobile phone battery, despite a rumor to the contrary. Apparently emergency operators have been receiving a lot of these phone-charging calls. There's a similar rumor that claims you can recharge your mobile phone by putting it in a microwave for a minute. Also not true. Don’t Ring 999 to Charge Your Mobile – It Doesn’t Work! Bedfordshire Police would like to warn mobile phone users not to phone 999 to charge their mobiles. It is known that a rumour or urban myth suggesting that calling 999 and…
Categories: Technology, Urban Legends Comments (2)
Pastor drowns trying to walk on water
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jan 15, 2014
A news story has been circulating recently about a west African preacher, Franck Kabele, who drowned while trying to show his congregation that he could walk on water just like Jesus Christ. source: ReportGhanaNews.com This story is almost certainly a hoax that media outlets are repeating as real news. The Christian Post notes that this story about Franck Kabele was first reported in British papers back in August 2006. They say it first appeared in the Scottish Daily Record, but I found it printed a day earlier (Aug 29, 2006) in the London Evening Standard, as follows: Priest drowns 'walking on water' The Evening Standard (London) - Aug 29, 2006 …
Categories: Journalism, Religion Comments (0)
Giant Santa Monica Squid
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jan 10, 2014
The latest fake news article masquerading as authentic report involves a giant squid — grown to mutant size because of Fukushima radiation — supposedly washed ashore near Santa Monica. The photo of the giant squid is circulating with hashtags such as #RadioactiveGigantism and #GiantSeaCreature. The story comes from a site called The Lightly Braised Turnip. I suppose that name is supposed to tip you off that the site is like The Onion, or aspires to be. But it's not The Onion. It's a lightly braised turnip instead. A few months ago a giant squid really did wash ashore in Spain, and the folks at the Lightly Braised Turnip used an image of that squid…
Page 6 of 286 pages ‹ First  < 4 5 6 7 8 >  Last ›
All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.