238 posts tagged with Hoax.
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Shh, I'm hunting wabbits...

An online psycho (or entrepreneurial genius?) says he's holding a bunny, named Toby, hostage unless charitable animal lovers donate $50,000 to his paypal account. Otherwise, he'll butcher it. So far, he's got $14,000.
posted by nospecialfx on Feb 17, 2005 - 59 comments


Snouters were a class of animals that had evolved to use their noses for virtually every imaginable function. Gallery. (Japanese geocities page)
posted by dhruva on Feb 14, 2005 - 10 comments

Knowing is half the battle!

Iraqi militants claimed...to have taken an American soldier hostage and threatened to behead him... The posting, on a Web site that frequently carried militants' statements, included a photo of what that statement said was an American soldier, wearing desert fatigues and seated on a concrete floor with his hands tied behind his back. The figure in the photo appeared stiff and expressionless... Looks like a bunch of newspapers got duped.
posted by furtive on Feb 1, 2005 - 32 comments

Archaeological forgeries

The Cardiff Giant, The Mandelbrot Monk, and the amazing Centaur Skeleton from Volos. It's not just this administration that loves to manufacture evidence. Scientists too have often succumbed to temptation.
posted by acrobat on Dec 16, 2004 - 14 comments

#35 - 'Please accept my apology, and the assurance that I will send no more letters like this to companies.'

Overqualified: A new letter every Tuesday
Joey Comeau wrote cover letter after cover letter, listing the same store bought traits in the same wording, day after day, hoping to find another job. And then one day he just snapped a little. He sat down to write a cover letter, and something entirely new came out. So he sent it anyway, but also publishes them on the web. (Or at least he used to.)
posted by anastasiav on Nov 27, 2004 - 19 comments


CNN's "Undecided" Voter Turns Out To Be A GOP Operative CNN gets duped by Edward Martos. They thought he was an "undecided" voter, but he turned out to be a GOP operative.
posted by Postroad on Oct 12, 2004 - 24 comments

Where can I plug in?

A home computer in the year 2004
As envisioned in 1954, via Presurfer
posted by moonbird on Sep 19, 2004 - 67 comments

Did NASA fake the moon landings?

Did NASA fake the moon landings? I'm convinced!
posted by glenwood on Sep 1, 2004 - 19 comments

Aspiring Politician Giving Head

A San Francisco man (an "aspiring" politician) fakes his own decapitation video.
posted by bluedaniel on Aug 8, 2004 - 20 comments

Ding, dong the bitch is dead

Margaret Thatcher dies, aged 79. [hoax]
posted by i_cola on Aug 4, 2004 - 63 comments

Unreal or Really Real?

Plain Layne, a compelling weblogger from Minneapolis, appears to have disappeared (in the internet sense) leaving many of her cult followers grasping at straws. Aside from the cryptic Polish message left on her site, many are wondering: Was she even real?
posted by KevinSkomsvold on Jun 15, 2004 - 42 comments

not stick

Stigmata fraud. A mostly skeptical look.
posted by four panels on Jun 10, 2004 - 4 comments

sniggle: to fish for eels by thrusting a baited hook or needle into their hiding places

sniggle.net :: calls itself a 'Culture Jammer's Encyclopedia' -- its a fabulous compendium of forgeries, fakes, hoaxes, counterfeiting, spoofs, pseudoscience, and just plain weird stuff. Perfect fodder for killing time on a Friday afternoon.
posted by anastasiav on Apr 23, 2004 - 6 comments

The Piri Reis maps

Piri Reis Map I am a sucker for those books that hypothesize that Earth was visited by extra-terrestrials in the distant pass. One artifact that is brought up in nearly all of them is The Piri Reis Map, a document that seems to be a map includes parts of the world (such as Antarctica's ice-covered mountains) that were thought to be very recent discoveries. But, are they a hoax?
posted by synecdoche on Apr 21, 2004 - 14 comments

9 out of 10 Dentists Find This *HOT*... and ironically named

I don't bite....haaaaaard. Making the commuter train ride more interesting: Bluetoothing for anonymous sex. Called Toothing (message board, may be NSFW), randy Brits are using the wonders of technology to find themselves a bit o' fun after a long day's work. Just set your wireless device to discover other nearby devices, send out the 'standard greeting' and get ready to get bizzay. Why do it? Well, the Toothing FAQ says it all: "It's fun! And exciting! And you can meet some wonderful new people and make proper friends. " Well, of course! And don't think it's just a British thing, Toothing's goin' international! So, reach out... reach out and touch someone. Don't forget to floss!
posted by tittergrrl on Apr 20, 2004 - 20 comments


Restaurant Industry Warns Members to Beware Strip-Search Hoax. "If anyone requests a manager or other employee to order someone to disrobe, ignore their request because it is a privacy invasion." Anyone want to supersize their sexual assault?
posted by squirrel on Apr 7, 2004 - 10 comments

How Stupid can you Be?

Note to Self: What NOT to do when trying to fake your own kidnapping.....
posted by aacheson on Apr 2, 2004 - 63 comments

What fools these mortals be.

Regularly-updated listing of today's April Fools jokes on the web. Add 'em if you've got 'em.
posted by Fourmyle on Apr 1, 2004 - 16 comments

April Fools

Top 100 April Fools Hoaxes of all time. Also, April Fools on the Net - a history of newsgroup April Fools posts.
posted by badstone on Apr 1, 2004 - 3 comments

if it's worth doing it once...

Remember the Dihydrogen Monoxide parody from a few years ago?

lethal if inhaled, causes severe burns in its gaseous state, and is the major component in acid rain...

Snopes does. Mefi does too.

In a reworking of a classic story, City Councillors in Orange County were about to debate the pressing issue of Dihydrogen Monoxide before realising that the dangerous chemical was, in fact, water.
posted by triv on Mar 24, 2004 - 14 comments

I see Jesus!

ISeeJesus.com Possible scenario: A church has suffered years of ever lowering attendance. A church elder contracts IseeJesus.com. The following Sunday a righteous and long time congregant notices a pattern of a familiar face in the swirls of dirt and mineralisation on the side of the church...Word spreads and each Sunday sees more people in the pews and more money in the collection plate.
posted by tippiedog on Jan 14, 2004 - 9 comments

Top ten scientific hoaxes.

With the 50th anniversary of the exposure of Piltdown Man as a hoax coming next week, The Guardian brings you the top ten science hoaxes.
posted by Ufez Jones on Nov 13, 2003 - 32 comments

Where the wildlife has a half-life

"The creation of the Nuclear Power Plant at Sellafield (formerly known as Windscale) was a bonus for the local zoo, as large tracts of land were made available and cheap by people moving away or dying."
posted by mr_crash_davis on Nov 11, 2003 - 15 comments

Clooney gets Kayceed

Clooney gets conned Kaycee'd and is being sued. "THE ACTOR opened his heart last year when a woman told him about her tragic, cancer-stricken daughter, Cindy, and he began making calls and sending gifts to the terminally-ill young woman. Before long, however, Clooney began to doubt that 'Cindy' really existed."
posted by mathowie on Oct 2, 2003 - 16 comments

Sad Times, and Rainbow Bridges

"So I thought about the story of the rabbit jumping into the fire and realized that Grendel would have wanted to give me every last little bit of joy possible, and I should do something truly personal with her body. I decided to make a fancy dinner with her." (via memepool)
posted by emelenjr on Aug 11, 2003 - 86 comments

Patent bending

The New Yorker's James Surowiecki writes about patent creep. With eBay losing one court case and being threatened by another, Spike Lee trying to stop his first name being used, Amazon owning the concept of threaded discussions, the never-ending Un*x wars, and bands trying to protect certain chord progressions (OK that one's a hoax), is this a worrying pattern that needs to be reversed, and is it just the beginning of an anti-competitive trend that will see our own genes being patented?
posted by cbrody on Jul 17, 2003 - 10 comments

Baby ink?

...Baby Ink will not work on anyone under 6 months of age, as their sensitive skin does not react well to the ink. "Although we are the ORIGINAL body art chain to cater to toddlers and children, our experienced, talented staff is glad to work on people of all ages. So whether you're 8 months or 88 years old, if you're ready for a tattoo or a body piercing-the clear choice is Baby Ink!" I don't quite know what to think of this. [via die puny humans]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken on Jul 6, 2003 - 51 comments

Divinely Inspired to Pick Your Name...

Nigerian email scam dudes. Possibly the first visual evidence of the rapscallions behind the scam that just keeps on sucking in new 'investors'.
posted by apocalypse miaow on Jun 14, 2003 - 13 comments

The steam-powered drum machine

The steam-powered drum machine - an astonishing extract from the journal of Charles Franklin, the founder of the London Museum of Techno. Written in 1894, Franklin describes a steam-powered drum machine and what may have been the world's first rave. "Driven by the thunderous rhythms of Hoovenaars tremendous "drum machine" the crowd - academics and dockers, architects and cobblers - were whipped into a frenzy, dancing and screaming like savages until sunrise, when the Machine finally ground to a halt with a suffering hiss."
posted by adrianhon on May 20, 2003 - 33 comments


How BADLY do you want to be a millionaire? Badly enough to cheat on a TV game show? An ex-Army Major, his wife and another man have been convicted of 'procuring the execution of a valuable security by deception' - in other words, getting someone to sign a cheque for a million pounds which was won by cheating.

The scam involved a series of coughs at strategic points in the "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?" game show, guiding the Major to the right answers.

The show was never aired after suspicions were raised but I would be interested to see if it'll now be released so I can make up my own mind about the suspicious, ahem, coughs.
posted by essexjan on Apr 7, 2003 - 22 comments

Astounding Discovery

Astounding Discovery. Anybody else been waiting with breathless anticipation for March 8th, 2003? It's too late to debate whether or not this is a hoax (although that particular horse was pretty well beaten here). Our mystery man is on the run again, but the photos are going up tomorrow. Stay tight. The government is closing in. Even with everything else going on in the world, if they can't prevent this information from going public, all I can say is "biblical proportions."
posted by RKB on Mar 7, 2003 - 72 comments

"I poisoned P2P networks for the RIAA"

"I poisoned P2P networks for the RIAA", a whistleblower from the IFPI (the global version of the RIAA) has said. Someone else actually claimed this a few days ago but it was admitted to be a hoax. Now, a fellow by the name of Matt Warne comes forward with a new claim.

While I'm sure many MeFi'ers disagree about the ethics of music piracy (which it is, whether or not you think it should be okay) - I think we can all agree that two wrongs don't make a right, can we not? Can the RIAA be sued for this, or will it be an invincible body, impervious to injury just like a certain other huge body that has problems getting hacked all the time, and simply has to repeatedly settle in court rather than admitting true wrongdoing?
posted by twiggy on Jan 17, 2003 - 57 comments

Bigfoot is dead.

Bigfoot is dead. The original 'creator' of the legendary bigfoot hoax has died. Some of his "work". How much more difficult to pull off would a 'hoax' of this magnitude be today?
posted by cinderful on Dec 5, 2002 - 17 comments

The Ossian Hoax

Goethe's Werther exclaims "Ossian has, in heart, supplanted Homer" (more at ex-classics)
Napoleon carried a copy of Ossian with him and even commissioned a painting by Ingres. Ossian, son of Fingal, was a Gaelic Bard from the 3rd century A.D. and the author of an epic text discovered and translated in the 18th century by one James Macpherson. His works enthralled the artistic elite. Schubert set them to music. Goethe assisted in the German translation. Others, including Samuel Johnson were more skeptical and, in the end, were proven right - Ossian was a (well-constructed) hoax.
posted by Winterfell on Nov 16, 2002 - 11 comments

Nobody follows through on their hoaxes anymore.

Nobody follows through on their hoaxes anymore. I'm kind of disappointed. I didn't think that this would turn out to be anything big, but I was really hoping that it would be something ridiculous. Sigh.
posted by LittleMissCranky on Nov 11, 2002 - 19 comments

'Dear Mr. President' letter is a hoax.

'Dear Mr. President' letter is a hoax. You may remember the story of President Bush writing an author and telling him that his book was "unpatriotic and ridiculous and just plain bad writing"... [more inside]
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood on Nov 8, 2002 - 64 comments

NASA Challenges Moon Hoax Conspiracy

NASA Challenges Moon Hoax Conspiracy After decades of almost ignoring claims that the Apollo missions were hoaxed, NASA commissioned aerospace writer James Olberg to write an official rebuttle. Perhaps a bit more reasonable than the NASA Stooge, the book is aimed at the general public.
posted by KirkJobSluder on Nov 7, 2002 - 33 comments

I must keep on the move. I must not allow them to stop me or trace my whereabouts.

I must keep on the move. I must not allow them to stop me or trace my whereabouts. I must keep on the move. I must not allow them to stop me or trace my whereabouts. I have set the date for the release in the future to allow time to build publicity. With the worlds full attention, these secret agencies or privately run factions cannot deny or lie to the public about what I will reveal. This smacks of hoax, but I'm leaving the final decision on that up to you.
posted by bryanzera on Oct 23, 2002 - 85 comments

Space Needle Missing from the Seattle Skyline?

Space Needle Missing from the Seattle Skyline? (subscription) The rumor is someone bought the Space Needle in Seattle and moved it to their house. No! It was an ad for the lottery. Do TV channels need to make it clearer that something is an ad, or do people need to be more careful watching TV?
posted by scudder on Oct 17, 2002 - 28 comments

Who is Delmart "Mike" Vreeland?

Who is Delmart "Mike" Vreeland? The strange case of a man who made a handwritten note while in jail during summer 2001 predicting details of the Sept. 11 attacks. He claims to be an agent for the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) with advance knowledge of the attacks. The ONI claims he is a conman and compulsive liar trying to save himself from extradition to the US.
In the end, this six-month investigation for GNN confirmed what many already know: Delmart Vreeland is a liar and an accomplished conman, adept at spinning tales, and manipulating allegiances to further his own goals. In other words, he is the perfect candidate for work in U.S. intelligence.
Who is Delmart Vreeland? - Conman, Intelligence Agent, or both?
posted by tranceformer on Oct 11, 2002 - 19 comments


Hoaxed! In a follow-up to this thread where various news agencies were claiming the imminent demise of our blond brethren, based on "German experts" and WTO research, it turns out that the whole story was a hoax. It's either a case of serious journalistic inability to check sources...or the RTMark guys are at it again.
posted by dejah420 on Oct 1, 2002 - 9 comments

Get on the love train

Get on the love train and ride the singles car: "Thousands of New Yorkers are now forwarding an anonymous e-mail to each other informing them that from now on, every first subway car has been declared 'the singles car.'" Any New York Mefites want to claim responsibility for this?
posted by mr_crash_davis on Sep 5, 2002 - 24 comments

J.T. LeRoy: The Next Lit-Crit It Boy?

J.T. LeRoy: The Next Lit-Crit It Boy? A report from the trendy and bespectacled world of hipster-lit book-readings and its newest star, the mercurial J.T. LeRoy. From the article: "LeRoy is the mirror image of the New York hipster’s aspiration: the lost soul done good, when so many in the audience, in pricey vintage t-shirts, seemed to want nothing more than to shed the trappings of middle-class life. More than a few in the audience spoke of him with a sort of rapt awe usually accorded NBA stars and minor deities." For more info on LeRoy, check out the author's official website.
posted by cell divide on Jun 4, 2002 - 34 comments

Suspicious package found in downtown Minneapolis.

Suspicious package found in downtown Minneapolis. Ok, this is a little too close to home...
posted by esch on May 28, 2002 - 20 comments


Glurge. We're all familiar with glurge. It's that sickly-sweet inspirational message forwarded by someone who wants you to know they're "thinking of you", or the chain-letter story of the little girl with cancer who supposedly gets three cents for treatment every time you forward the message.

I prefer anti-glurge for snappy writing like this: "Dear world, My name is Jessica Miller and I am 7 years old. When I was born, my mother left me with my father, who locked me in the trunk of his Lumina for 7 years without food and water. While there, I got head cancer and second hand smoke. And fetal alcohol syndrome. And the flu." Via memepool and my mother.
posted by mr_crash_davis on May 27, 2002 - 14 comments

Scammer has thousands of dollars practically handed to her.

Scammer has thousands of dollars practically handed to her. "She says she needs money, then claims she knows the manager or store owner and suggests the clerk call the boss. The woman talks on the phone for a time, then hangs up, saying that she has permission to take the money." Clever.
posted by Kevin Sanders on Apr 9, 2002 - 11 comments

The upside of global warming.

The upside of global warming. While the people of the sinking nation of Tuvalu are busy finding a new home, someone has already found a temporary use for their sinking lands.
posted by skallas on Mar 31, 2002 - 2 comments

There are dozens of people on the internet who have been victimized by her, and yet no one seemed to do much about it. So they did.
posted by oh posey on Feb 2, 2002 - 24 comments

"Those breasts were lethal weapons,"

"Those breasts were lethal weapons," he told reporters. Greene's father, George, won't specify the amount they are suing for, but claims that it isn't about the money. 'Mind-boggling drama,' indeed! (via FC)
posted by scarabic on Jan 27, 2002 - 11 comments

The Tora-Bora Manuscripts

The Tora-Bora Manuscripts As soon as I published this journal at Blogger.com its servers were hacked. I believe it is a conspiracy perpetrated by the enemies of the TRUTH, trying to stop me. A lame but amusing hoax? Or dangerous and ancient secrets that will blow things wide open?
posted by y6y6y6 on Dec 30, 2001 - 16 comments

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