Top 10 Internet Hoaxes, Rumors, and Gossip Busted
Yesterday when someone posted an “article” on Facebook about the Two-Striped Telamonia Spider under the toilet seat — a hoax which is now FIFTEEN years old — we thought a “top 10 internet hoaxes” might be in order.
When you consider how big the world is, and that these reached us here in little Twin Falls, Rupert, etc, you know they’re popular (especially when you can spread any rumor you want with a click of a button).
These hoaxes were all revealed by snopes.com, whose sole purpose is to fact-check those nasty rumors circulating around the interwebs. We’ve all probably been guilty of at least believing one or two of these, if not spreading the word ourselves… but no more!
"Given the prominent, widespread protests and boycotts directed at Disney when it was revealed that Victor Salva, the writer-director of their 1995 film Powder (released through Disney's Hollywood Pictures subsidiary), had served time for child molestation, it stretches credulity to the breaking point to believe that the host of an extremely popular children's program on public television could have remained in that position for thirty-three years without having been hounded off the air amidst howls of condemnation from thousands of outraged parents.
"The May 2014 article and photographs... supposedly depict millions of brand new unsold cars, vehicles that are continuously churned out by automobile manufacturers around the world even though there is no demand for them and that end up sitting in car parks "slowly deteriorating without being maintained," forcing manufacturers to "buy more and more land just to park their cars as they perpetually roll off the production line." Although the displayed photographs are real, they are mostly several years old (reflecting conditions that existed back in 2009), and they do not now necessarily depict what is claimed in the accompanying text." - snopes.com
Origin: Circulated email
Origin: A widespread tale in existence since 1989.
"Think of it this way: if you were suddenly taken ill and suspected there was something wrong with whatever you'd just eaten, the tests that would be run on you would check for salmonella, e.coli, or other typical food poisoning culprits. You wouldn't expect anyone to go looking for HIV or herpes (at least until you manifested symptoms of them), much less semen. (Also, many infectious agents, such as HIV, wouldn't survive for long outside a human host, especially after having been put through a cooking process.)" - snopes.com
Origin: False article
"The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 compelled the Federal Trade Commission to provide an analysis of any technology, either then currently available or under development, which would allow a distressed ATM user to send an electronic alert to a law enforcement agency. The following statements were made in the FTC's April 2010 report in response to that requirement:
Okay I feel pretty silly because I genuinely thought this was real the first time I saw it. It doesn't have the wackiness factor of the others. That said, it's:
Origin: World News Daily Report website, which posts satirical articles. Then circulated by social media.
Yes, a second one about Obama, and believe me, there are plenty more. This one is:
Origin: Circulated via email around 2012
"The term "D-Day Monument" is non-specific and could refer to any one of a number of different sites. If the term "D-Day Monument" references any of the various monuments, memorials, or cemeteries around the sites of the 6 June 1944 Allied landings on the Normandy coast of France, then appearances by U.S. presidents at any of those sites in commemoration of D-Day have been neither a long-established tradition nor a regular occurrence — such visits are a fairly recent phenomenon, no president has made more than one visit, and President Obama is in fact among the small number of U.S. presidents who have attended D-Day anniversary ceremonies in Normandy." - snopes.com
Origins: An email circulated around 1999. It was then reborn in 2002 when a bunch of details were changed and circulated via social media.
"This scare story about venomous "South American Blush Spiders" supposedly lurking under toilet seats and delivering fatal bites to the posteriors of several victims first surfaced on the Internet during the summer of 1999 has since become firmly entrenched in the realm of urban legendry — fourteen years since its original appearance, the "butt spider" warning continues to circulate widely via social media and e-mail forwards." - snopes.com
This one is strange too since it also lacks the comedy factor. It sounds sincere, and it's about a serious topic. Weird.
Origins: urban legend
Interested readers are directed to a point-by-point debunking of the "Cancer Update" e-mail published by the Kimmel Cancer Center.