5. German Divorce Photos Hoax
In June, 2015 a Youtuber by the name of ‘Der Juli’, who was supposedly going through a divorce at the time, started cutting all his belongings in two to get back at his ex-wife. He posted photos of a TV sliced in twain, a little stuffed bear in two pieces and even a car cut in half. He said he was going to sell everything he cut up on Ebay.
Almost everyone bought the story as the internet lapped it up, watching this jaded lover cut through all his belongings, piece by piece.
However, it was soon revealed to be a complete hoax. Nothing more than a marketing stunt from a German website that helps people find lawyers.
4. Kuwait Shark Tank Explosion
This image started doing the social media rounds in 2012. It was allegedly taken at the Scientific Center in Kuwait after their shark tank exploded, filling the lobby with thousands of litres of water and two large sharks. The image spread like wildfire as people the world over marveled at the striking photo.
However, the photo was soon debunked when identical images, minus the sharks, emerged. The actual location was Toronto’s Union Station after a surge of rainwater and sewerage flooded the entrance.
To this day, no one knows who created the image.
3. September 11 Tourist Guy
Shortly after September 11 this photo started appearing around the internet. It shows a man standing on the observation deck of the World Trade Center in New York right as a plane is about to hit. The story goes that after the plane hit, the camera survived the building’s collapse and was recovered by the FBI during clean up – revealing this startling photo.
Some months later a Brazilian businessman by the name of José Roberto Penteado claimed to be the tourist in the photo. He got significant media attention, doing chat shows and radio, he was even allegedly offered a TV commercial deal with Volkswagen.
With the swell of media attention that Penteado received another man by name of Péter Guzli from Hungary stepped forward stating he was the man in the photograph. However, he claimed that he doctored the photo and was never there on September 11, 2001. He claimed the photo was taken in 1997 during a vacation to the US. He later submitted evidence to authorities that indeed proved that he had faked the photo from the very beginning and only intended to share the image as a joke among friends.
2. Air France Flight 447 Hoax Photos
In 2009, a pernicious email thread was spreading around this photo. It claimed it was snap taken during a horrific mid-air collision of Air France flight 447 and an Airbus 330. While these two flights did meet a tragic end, they didn’t collide with one another and this photo was not taken on board either of the planes.
This photo is a single frame taken from the pilot episode of ABC’s television show Lost.
1. President Bush Upside Down Book Hoax Photo
In late 2002 this photo of former president George W. Bush went viral around the internet. It shows the former president reading a copy of America: A Patriotic Primer by Lynne Cheney, wife of former Vice-President Dick Cheney. There in Bush’s hands the book appears to be upside down. Many theories were offered to explain the image. It could have been an assistant that handed the book upside down right as the photo was taken, giving little time for Bush to realise the mistake. Another theory said the jacket of the book may have been place upside down so the words would have been the right way up but the cover upside down.
In actual fact, the image turned out to be a complete hoax. Here’s the original photo taken for the Associated Press at the George Sanchez Charter School in Houston during the summer of 2002: