Written by FHM India
Microsoft buys Catholic Church
In 1994, a highly circulated press release claimed that Microsoft has bought a Catholic church because Bill Gates considered religion as a promising market. The billionaire was quoted saying, “The combined resources of Microsoft and the Catholic Church will allow us to make religion easier and more fun for a broader range of people.” The releases also stated that the company would acquire exclusive electronic rights to the Bible and would make the sacraments available online. The company formally denied it.
Can a mobile phone double up as a shaver, projector, coffee maker, translator and everything else that you can think of? You would have nodded in approval if you were among the ones to be fooled by this viral ad created as a marketing campaign on behalf of the Government of Nova Scotia. Though it was criticised for the mammoth spending of $3,00,000 but the people behind it were content with the 3 million visits from 195 countries within a few days of its release.
Hotel in a helicopter
Hotelicopter was an April Fools’ Day video prank that showed the launch of the world’s first hotel based on the Soviet made Mi-12 military helicopter. The hoax claimed that the first commercial flight of Hotelicopter was scheduled to take off on 26 June 2009 from JFK Airport in New York City, and reach the UK later that August. The false images and videos were so technically sound that no one could figure out that it was not a genuine promotion.
World’s biggest diamond
The discovery of the “world’s biggest diamond” in 2006 enthralled everyone. It was believed to be double the size of the Cullinan, or Great Star of Africa, which was discovered near Pretoria in 1905. The mining firm, which claimed to have found the stone, also said that it was being transported to a vault in Johannesburg. However the authenticity of the diamond couldn’t be proved and it was declared a fake.
Sex School was a hoax
Media stunned the audience when it reported that the world’s first sex school had opened in Austria and that it would teach students about the art of lovemaking. However, one of the emails they sent to us read, “It was a way to get the world to talk about sexuality and the demand for more sex. It was made up by the Austrian action group The Birdbase.”
On 5 May 1995, a London-based film producer Ray Santilli released autopsy footage of an alien claiming that the body was picked from the supposed Roswell UFO crash site in 1947. The footage was later debated to be of a very realistic mannequin. Even the way the autopsy was conducted was questioned. The strongest evidence was one of the warning signs showed in the background, which was not produced
Oh father! You’re mom.
While riding from St. Peter’s to the Lateran, Pope John VIII – John Anglicus suddenly got down and gave birth to a child. Jaws dropped when everyone discovered that Pope John was really Pope Joan. Some believe that the deceived followers dragged her behind a horse until she died, while others say that she was sent to a remote convent and the son she gave birth to grew up to become the Bishop of Ostia. There isn’t a credible account of the legend though.
Hitler’s $6 million-dollar diary
In 1983, the German magazine Der Stern claimed the possession of a diary kept by Adolf Hitler himself. It paid $6 million to buy it. However within two weeks, the Hitler Diaries were found to be fake and full of oh-so-obvious mistakes like the monogram on the title page that read ‘FH’ instead of ‘AH’ (for Adolf Hitler). The diaries were actually written by Konrad Kujau, who often forged Hitler’s works.
Tendulkar’s ‘shell house’
Recently, a Bengali daily in Kolkata published “exclusive” pictures of an organic shell house that was to be designed for the master-blaster by the global brand Mexican architect, Javier Senosian in Mumbai. The news piece also said that it was worth 30 crores and spread over 9000 sq feet on Carter Road. When journalists called Senosian, he asked, “ Who is Tendulkar and what is cricket”?
The Fake IPL Player
It was a blog that hit the web at the same time as IPL 2, which was held in South Africa. The blogger claimed to be a member of the IPL team, Kolkata Knight Riders. The blog suggested nicknames of players, coaches, and owners of
KKR and other dressing room gossips. In August 2010, Bangalore based marketing specialist Anupam Mukerji admitted to being the ‘fake blogger’.
Suraj On MTV Roadies
This guy literally had the self-proclaimed smart assess, Raghu and Ranvijay, during the auditions of Roadies 8. We don’t need to tell you how he managed an entry with a fake identity, but indeed he won a million hearts.
This explains how media houses are often tricked into false stories. In 2011, news agencies reported that Japanese scientist Mitsuyuki Ikeda was trying to create meat from poop. The stories even said that Ikeda has found a way to extract protein from human waste, mix it with steak sauce and create a burger.
Hercules the Dog
In 2007, an email containing the photo of the world’s largest dog surprised those who found it in their inbox. The English Mastiff, Hercules, was said to weigh 128 kgs and stood almost as tall as a horse. The photo testified the herculean size but later turned out to be a good bit of Photoshop.