About the Hoax Photo Database
The Hoax Photo Database catalogs examples of photo fakery, from the beginnings of photography up to the present. Included in the database are photos that are "real," but which have been suspected of being fake, as well as images whose veracity remains undetermined. The photos are displayed in chronological order (or reverse-chronological). They're categorized by theme, technique of fakery (if known), and time period. See below for the full list of categories.

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hoax photo database
Cow on hood of car
Status:
Date: Jan 2013
Technique: Composite Images. Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: Animals, Humor, viral images,.
Permalink
Paris Hilton Says ‘Stop Being Poor’
Status:
Date: Nov 2013
Technique: . Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: Celebrities, viral images,.
Permalink
Jennifer Aniston gets a buzzcut
Status:
Date: 2013
Technique: . Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: Celebrities, viral images,.
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Santa’s Identity Revealed
Status:
Date: Dec 2013
Technique: . Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: viral images,.
Permalink
Snow-Covered Sphinx
Status:
Date: 2013
Technique: False Captions. Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: viral images, Weather,.
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Long Exposure of a Tree Struck by Lightning
Status:
Date: 2013
Technique: Drawn-in Details. Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: Art, viral images, Weather,.
Permalink
Giant Squid in Santa Monica
Status:
Date: 2014
Technique: Composite Images. Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: viral images, Fish, Very Large Animals,.
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Orphaned Syrian Boy Sleeping Between his Parents’ Graves.
Status:
Date: Jan 2014

The photo, as captioned, tugged at the heartstrings. So it was no surprise that it quickly went viral. But it was soon revealed to be a staged shot taken by a photographer in Saudi Arabia as part of a conceptual art project. The graves were fake, and the boy was the photographer's nephew.

The photographer, 24-year-old Abdel Aziz Al-Atibi took the photo of his nephew Ibrahim on January 3, 2014. He then posted it to his Instagram account, with the message, "Some kids might feel that their dead parents' bodies are more affectionate to them than the people they're living with." He later explained to beirut.com: "I'm a photographer and I try to talk about the suffering that is happening in society, it's my hobby and my exaggeration is intended to deliver my idea."

The image quickly went viral, but as it did so people assumed it showed a child whose family had been killed during the conflict in Syria. And it quickly gained a caption to that effect.

When Al-Atibi learned of how the photo was being misunderstood, he uploaded more photos showing other shots of his nephew during the photoshoot, to demonstrate that the scene was a staged art project.



References:
  • This Viral Photo Purporting to Show an Orphaned Syrian Boy Isn't What You Think It is. Beirut.com.
Technique: Staged Scene. Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: Art, viral images, War,.
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The Ultimate Houseboat
Status:
Date: 2014
Technique: Composite Images. Time Period: 2005-Present.
Themes: viral images,.
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