The Museum of Hoaxes
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Man flies by own lung power, 1934
Brief History of Triple-Decker Buses
Mencken's fake history of the bathtub, 1917
The Man-Eating Tree of Madagascar Hoax, 1874
The Great Electric Sugar Swindle, 1884
The Sandpaper Test, 1960
Tourist Guy 9/11 Hoax, Sep 2001
Lord Gordon-Gordon, robber of the robber barons, 1871
The Lovely Feejee Mermaid, 1842
Adolf Hitler Baby Photo Hoax, 1933
Katie Couric Slimmed Down
In September 2006 Katie Couric became the anchor of the CBS Evening News, after a long career at NBC. As CBS put it, this made her "the first female solo anchor of a weekday network evening news broadcast."

A picture of Couric (top) posing in front of a CBS logo appeared in the September issue of CBS's Watch magazine (distributed at CBS stations and on American Airlines). But sharp-eyed newshounds at realized they had seen the image before. It had been taken in May 2006 during a presentation for advertisers held by CBS at Carnegie Hall. In anticipation of her move to CBS, Couric had briefly appeared on stage. The photo of her at this event was the first image showing her in front of a CBS logo. CBS had distributed it as a promotional photo.

But in the original version of the photo (bottom) distributed in May, Couric was noticeably heavier. Watch magazine had evidently digitally slimmed her down.

The alteration generated controversy, since, as many asked, would a new male anchor have been similarly slimmed down? CBS attributed the alteration to someone in the photo department who "got a little zealous." Couric dismissed her digital weight loss as a trivial event. She said, "I liked the first picture better because there's more of me to love."

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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.