Tag Archives | Hoaxes

Dust: The Proof That We Landed On The Moon

In an unapologetic attack on Moon-landing hoax proponents, Popular Science, claims that the proof that we landed on the Moon is the movement of dust behind the lunar rover:

Today marks the 45th anniversary of Apollo 11’s lunar landing, which means the Moon hoax theorists are out in full force. And while scientists have refuted the hoaxers most common arguments like how the Apollo flags apparently wave in a vacuum, there’s one interesting way to prove that we did in fact land on the Moon that we don’t see all that often: the movement of dust kicked up by the lunar rover on Apollo 16.

Apollo 16 was the second Apollo mission to take a lunar rover to Moon. In April of 1972, Commander John Young and Lunar Module Pilot Charlie Duke spent a little more than 20 hours exploring the Moon’s Descartes region. The rover allowed them to cover more ground than they would have been able to on foot, and also gave them a unique off-roading experience.

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Germany’s Feral “Forest Boy” Found Guilty As Fraud

forest boyThis is one way to start your life all over again. Via The Local:

The young man who became world famous as the “Forest Boy” when he claimed he had lived feral in German woods for five years – agreed to carry out 150 hours of community service on Thursday after admitting making it all up. Berlin authorities charged him with fraud after spending €30,000 looking after him before his identity and age were revealed.

“Ray” became a global story in September 2011 after turning up at Berlin’s city hall and asking for help. He told astounded officials he had been living in the woods for five years with his father, sleeping in huts and living off the land. He said he no longer knew who he was nor where he was from – and that after his father died in a fall.

“Ray” stuck to his story for months and even attracted the attention of one couple who said he was their long lost son.

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Alabama Radio Station’s Alien Invasion Spoof Causes Mass Panic

alien invasion promo A little more healthy skepticism could be of benefit. Via al.com:
A radio promotion spoofing aliens hacking into a Florence, Alabama radio station spooked students into believing schools would be attacked. To bring attention to a format change at Star 94.9, Brian Rickman, program director for Shoals Radio Group, said the station on Monday began airing conversations between aliens. "The concept being that they heard our frequency several light years away, they didn't like Justin Bieber and the pop music we were playing and they were going to take over the radio station and adjust the format," Rickman said. A flood of phone messages were awaiting Rickman when he got to work Tuesday, he said, including those from police and superintendents of area school systems. Law enforcement still decided to put extra security on campuses as the aliens announced that they would be taking over the radio station at 9 a.m. today.
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Fake Signs On California Highways Warn Of Enforcer Drones

fake signs

Would you bat an eye if you saw this sign? Via NBC News:

California commuters may have been alarmed last week by highway signs that warned them that they were being watched by missile-equipped drones. But the signs were fake, installed by an artist from Napa, and have quickly been taken down by the California Highway Patrol.

“The motivation is partially political and partially a prank,” the artist Stephen Whisler, who lives in Napa, Calif., told NBC News, explaining why the “Speed enforced by drones” signs he put up last Monday show a Predator firing a missile.

The California Highway Patrol was still investigating the issue, and has yet to decide if they’re filing charges. Meanwhile, Whisler has been waiting. “I’m sort of surprised, I’m expecting them to show up any moment,” he said.

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Man In China Jailed For Alien Hoax

alien

This eerie yet funny alien was made of rubber, steel, and a substance called antholeucin and was stored in Mr. Li’s freezer. Via the New York Daily News:

A Chinese farmer has been jailed for disrupting social order — after he posed with an “alien” he claimed he’d electrocuted after its UFO crashed near his home.

Mr. Li sparked a social media frenzy on Monday when pictures of him standing next to what appeared to be an extraterrestrial life-form were uploaded online. But, following police interrogation, he reportedly confessed to making the whole incident up — admitting that the “body” was in fact rubber.

The Shangdong farmer now faces five days in jail. “The alien purportedly electrocuted and discovered by a man in Binzhou is a high-quality imitation,” posted Jinan Police on its Sina microblog.

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49 Hoaxes People Actually Believed – Mental Floss (Ep.12)

A weekly show hosted by John Green, where knowledge junkies get their fix of trivia-tastic information. This week, John looks at some of history’s greatest hoaxes including “Balloon Boy” (the boy, by the way is now in a metal band), “Lonelygirl15″ and “War of the Worlds” (you didn’t think we could do an episode on hoaxes and NOT include it, did you?).

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Pacific Standard on the ‘Mystery of John Titor’

Picture: John Titor's military patch.

Picture: John Titor’s military patch.

The John Titor story is one of my favorite modern myths: A time traveler from a war-torn future Earth visits the past to collect a few needed computer parts. Along the way, he offers a countdown of harrowing future events that will lead to the dystopian United States that he calls home, always with the caveat that these things may not happen in this particular timeline. Titor disappeared as mysteriously as he appeared, and to this day, some corners of the internet continue to debate who he was.

Via Pacific Standard:

This is our planet’s bleak future: a second Civil War splinters America into five factions, leaving the new capital based in Omaha. World War III breaks out in 2015, starting with Russia and the U.S. trading nukes and ending with three billion dead. Then, to top it all off, a computer bug delivers where Y2K sputtered, destroying our world as we know it.

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The Fine Art of Hoaxing – An American Tradition

Ben Franklin (DbM 2010)

Allen Greenfield, recently announced that he had found in his archives a series of unreleased tapes of interviews that were made by Gray Barker, the UFOlogist and folklorist best known for his coverage of fortean events in West Virginia, including the Mothman, Flatwoods Monster, and for his, some say, invention of the contemporary mythos of the Men in Black. Credulous curmudgeons, and stuffy skeptics often lament Barker’s involvement in the field of Forteana, saying that he was nothing more than an ill intentioned prankster that muddied the waters of serious investigation, or worse, a profiteering culture pirate who took advantage of the gullible with articles for Fate Magazine, books like They Knew Too Much About Flying Saucers, The Silver Bridge, MIB: The Secret Terror Among Us, and the many publications he put out from others via his imprint Saucerian Press.

A proper hoax, however, has a cathartic value that can be missed if we’re too stuck on the dull task of debunking.… Read the rest

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Archaeology Being Undermined By Fake Fossils Of Imaginary Animals

Could your favorite ancient animal species not be real? Via the Archaeology News Network:

Fake fossils are duping scientists and museums, a senior paleontologist has warned, after a scholar was forced to retract a controversial essay that stated the cheetah originated in China.

According to Li Chun, associate researcher at the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, counterfeits are now widespread and have become a serious risk to genuine study projects. “I believe many scholars are victims of fake fossils,” he said, before estimating that more than 80 percent of marine reptile specimens on display in Chinese museums “have been altered or artificially combined to varying degrees”.

Li’s alert follows the debunking last month of an essay co-authored by Huang Ji, a Chinese scientist, and Danish researcher Per Christiansen in 2008 about an alleged new species of cheetah.

“Probably to make it appear more complete, thus enhancing its commercial value, Chinese fossil dealers makes numerous fake fossils.

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Montana Man Struck And Killed While Attempting To Create Bigfoot Sighting

Tamper with the world of legends and pay the price. Via USA Today:

A man who was apparently trying to provoke reports of a Bigfoot sighting in northwestern Montana was struck by two cars and killed, authorities said. Flathead County officials identified the man as Randy Lee Tenley, 44, of Kalispell.

The man was wearing a military-style “Ghillie suit” consisting of strips of camouflage fabric and was standing in the right-hand lane of a highway south of Kalispell on Sunday night when he was hit by the first car, according to the Montana Highway Patrol. A second car hit the man as he lay in the roadway, authorities said.

“He was trying to make people think he was Sasquatch so people would call in a Sasquatch sighting,” trooper Jim Schneider told the Daily Inter Lake newspaper on Monday.

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