Top 10 Internet Hoaxes that Fooled Everyone

| December 30, 2013 | 0 Comments

You can’t believe everything you read on the internet. There will always be stories that spread faster than wild fire in cyber space. These falsified deceptions are often created for amusement, and amass a large following of believers.  Ever since the dawn of the internet, people have been falsifying information for the masses. It’s human nature to tell a white lie now and then, but some hoaxes or pranks  go too far. Here are ten that fooled everyone (at least for a little while in our opinion).

internet hoaxes and pranks

10. Lindsay Lohan’s HIV Twitter Scam

A scandalous story spread across the Twitter-verse recently. Stories about Lindsay Lohan always seem to be scandalous, but this one was not even true. When the story broke about Lindsay lohan testing positive for HIV, both Lohan and her father were so busy pointing fingers at one another they didn’t realize neither one of them had been hacked. The supposed hack was a hoax. This hoax within a hoax, died fast, but like all things on the internet, the  story will be around  forever.

9. Twitter Celebrity Death Hoaxes

Reports of their deaths have been really exaggerated. Really. Twitter has been killing celebrities for years. The following false RIP’s were announced and soon denounced on Twitter. Celine Dion’s death was reported back 2012, the same week Twitter decided to announce that Justin Bieber had  passed. In 2010, @CNN broke the news that actor Morgan Freedman had passed. Also false. Unfortunately, celebrity death rumors have been around a lot longer than the internet. The most infamous being the report that, Paul Mccartney of The Beatles, was killed in a car crash in 1966.

8. The Blair Witch Project

Back in 1999, a bizarre, seemingly real website emerged. A website sharing the lost films of three, young filmmakers who had disappeared in the woods of Maryland while shooting a documentary about the elusive Blair witch, In what later turned out to be an elaborate marketing scheme, it was revealed that none of it was true. There was no such thing as the Blair Witch, three young filmmakers were actors, and all of it had been calculated to launch the release of a horror movie by the same name. We were all fooled and the movie company laughed all the way to the bank.

7. Tourist Guy of 9/11

The photo of  ‘Tourist Guy 9/11’. a top The World Trade Center, in what would appear to be mere seconds before the plane hit the tower, is shocking, Shocking and completely untrue. The photo is a fake. Taken in 1997, the photo was doctored and circulated among ‘Tourist Guy’s’ friends via email as a joke. The photo soon spread and escalated into a viral sensation, prompting an apology to the victims of 9/11 families, ten years later. ‘Tourist Guy’ eventually became a widely spread meme, as his face began to appear in other doctored photos from history; like The Titanic and KKK rallies.

6. Charge Your iPod With an Onion and Gatorade

In 2007, a You Tube video surfaced, displaying claims that an onion, combined with the electrolytes of Gatorade could, indeed, re-charge an iPod. Dipping the onion into the Gatorade and then plugging the iPod into the onion appeared to be a sure fire way of charging one’s device. It wasn’t true. The video, viewed by millions, was a hoax. The claims, unfounded and de-bunked by the famed ‘Myth Busters‘ show proved to be false. That hasn’t stopped millions of people from continuing to view this tutorial, and it will most likely be many years before curious iPod owners quit trying this alternative charging method.

5. Email from Nigerian Prince

Have you ever checked you in box and found a lengthy letter from a Nigerian Prince requesting a money transfer? If you haven’t, consider yourself lucky. This email scam has been around for years, with many variations on the details. The idea is always the same, a Prince is in need of an advance, he request that you forward him the money, and he will, in turn, share his fortune with you once he is able. Sounds crazy, right? Not for one Oregon woman, who in 2008, did just that. She wired $400,000 to the sender of such an email, proving the old adage; a fool and his money are soon parted.

4. McDonald’s Marquee Sign

In what seemed to be show of solidarity,  McDonald’s and Burger King’s marquee signs showed  support for Chick -fil -A in response to a recent boycott resulting from their stance on gay marriage. The signs, proclaiming, ‘we support Chick-Fil-A now try to boycott us’ were completely fabricated. Apparently, there’s an app for that. The fake signs, created using a fast food sign generator app, falsely displayed a message from McDonald’s and other fast food chains, jumping in on the controversy. It’s unclear whether or not McDonald’s supports gay marriage, but one thing is certain, they did not post it on their marquee signs.

3. Golden Eagle Snatches Kid

It doesn’t take much for a YouTube video to go viral. When it features a golden eagle swooping in and snatching a baby in a park, it spreads even faster. That’s what 2.7 million viewers proved, when they viewed what appeared to be an actual occurrence. It took only a few days for its creators to come clean and admit the video was a hoax, but not before the nay sayers loudly expressed their disbelief. It fooled many, but some discredited the possibility if such a thing happening, early on. The video, produced by three undergrad students at Centre Nad, a Design College in Montreal, who used 3D animation to add the baby and the eagle into the viral video.

2. Google Killed a Donkey, or Did They?

Google’s street view cars came under fire, when photos emerged from Botswana, recently. The images seemed to depict a donkey standing on the side of the road one minute, then lying on its side in the car’s tracks the next. Th misinterpreted story if the events soon went viral. Google reps soon responded with a complete explanation. Although it appeared that their street view car ran over and killed a donkey, it didn’t. In a blog post, titled, “Never Ass-ume”, Google explained that the photos were displayed out of order and no donkeys were injured during the filming of said street view.

1. Back to The Future Day

Another viral hoax fooled the world, thanks to Photoshop and nostalgia. We all remember, the Back to the Future movies and Marty McFly’s journey back in time and ahead to the future. But do we really remember the date he programmed his DeLorean for that trip? Of course not. That’s exactly what photoshoppong hoaxers were counting on when they intentionally told us that the date was here, today. Not once, but twice, photo shopped versions of the time machine were displayed and shared among the masses. The fake out dates included: July 5, 2010, and June 27, 2012.

There may be more hoaxes and pranks out there not listed here.

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