These sensational images and stories were shared on the internet, social media and blogs, fooling many people. We thought we'd debunk these hoaxes.
1. Shark Attacking Helicopter
Of course a shark leaping out of the water to attack a helicopter would be an epic image! This image first appeared in 2001 and was said to have won an award from National Geographic. But in reality, it's a composite of two different images. The plate image of the helicopter in front of the Golden Gate Bridge was taken by Lance Cheung for the US Air Force. The image of the shark was taken in False Bay, South Africa, by Charles Maxwell.
2. The Moon Melon from Japan
After Japan engineered some square watermelons, this image popped up claiming that they also engineered blue watermelons. The hoax centered around the fact that the watermelon had some kind of magical ability to change the way the consumer's taste senses worked for a period of time. Oh, and the magical melons cost $200 a pop. Of course this is all balderdash. The image is just a Photoshopped slice of regular old, non-magical watermelon.
3. A Castle in Ireland
Looks amazing, right? It's fake. It's actually a German castle that was composited onto a rock formation in Thailand. Supposedly, this was created for some kind of contest, but got loose on the Internet.
4. The Bike in the Tree
The hoax says that on Vashon Island, Washington, a boy chained his bike to this tree in 1914 and then went off to die in the first World War. But surprisingly, this image isn't Photoshopped... the hoax is more of an urban legend that grew around an actual thing. A man named Don Puz claims to be the owner of the bike, which he says that he ditched by this tree sometime in 1954. Still awesome to look at, but the story is not nearly as interesting as the hoax.
5. NYC Hurricane
This was claimed to be an image of Hurricane Sandy from 2012. But anyone who knows anything about weather would recognize that this isn't even an image of a hurricane. The composite also loses some reality points when you notice how massive the trees behind Lady Liberty are.
6. NYC Hurricane, Part 2
Wow, look at this epic and distressing image! It's almost like it's from a Roland Emmerich disaster movie... Wait, what's that? It actually *is* from a Roland Emmerich disaster movie (The Day After Tomorrow)? Well alrighty then. Debunked.
7. The Baby Foot
All I'll say about this image is that there is way too much tissue between the baby and the outside of the abdomen for anything like this to happen. There would have to be something very, very wrong.
8. The Hands of God
What was originally an interesting picture of a cloud hole was Photoshopped into something else. Trust me, you don't even want to know what meme this image is referencing (it's seriously NSFL - Not Safe for Life). But some people who saw it and didn't get the joke started calling it the Hands of God.
9. India from Space
This image was supposed to show India during Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights. Really impressive, right? Well it's completely false. The image is actually a 10 year composite of satellite images that was meant to display the growth of the country over a decade.
10. The Monastery in Bhutan
By now, you should be onto this hoax technique. Take a real rock formation (in this case, from the Tianzi Mountain Nature Reserve in China) and add something that was man-made to create a more fantastic image.
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