If nothing else, 2013 will be remembered as the year that finally made skeptics of us all. Between Manti Te’o’s supposed girlfriend, Diane in 7A, and a comedian’s feud with a fake Twitter account, nothing was as it seemed this year. At least all the hoaxes mentioned were perpetuated by people. It’s only when you can no longer trust an enormous, glowing squid that things have truly fallen apart.
Four months ago, a series of smartphone-shot videos purported to show an unexplained phenomenon: a 15-foot alien squid lighting up Bristol Harbor. Within 24 hours of surfacing online, the footage garnered millions of tweets, speculating on the origin of the creature. Experts were flummoxed, unable to account for what this luminescent monstrosity was exactly. Now, it turns out that all believers in the #BristolAlien squid were being catfished the whole time.
Apparently, a social media-friendly underwater-dweller is just the kind of thing you can see each week on The Happenings, a new show by British magicians Barry and Stuart on Watch Channel. Fittingly, the show involves pulling off illusions on real people out in public. The squid hoax was all part of a guerrilla campaign to get people talking about the show by lying to them, one of the more popular PR methods in 2013. Whether the show is a hit or not, this trend does not seem to be going anywhere–especially considering another hoax broke during the course of writing this post.
H/t to Daily Mail