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Urban Legends: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
Hoax Challenge: Can YOU Spot the Fakes?
Real or Fake? Take our quiz and see if you can tell the hoax photos from the real thing!
The Top 25 Scariest Urban Legends Ever!
Gather 'round the digital campfire to enjoy the Top 25 Scariest Stories we know. You'll be sore afraid!
Don't Be Fooled! Your Guide to Fake News Sites
Tired of people sharing fake news as if it's true? Point them to this checklist of satire sites on the web. Guaranteed 100% effective!
"The Russian Sleep Experiment" Will Keep You...
Did Russian researchers conduct an experiment in which five prison inmates were deprived of sleep for 15 days straight, driving them to insanity and cannibalism?
Do You Know What Happens When You Mess with...
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Also known as
7 Scary Stories to Make You Think Twice Before...
The absolute worst, most horrifying vacation travel stories we've ever heard!
The 13 Creepiest Tales to Tell Around a Campfire
Thirteen of the creepiest stories ever told. Read them if you dare.
Richard Gere and the Gerbil, a Moral Tale
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >I don't mean to
"Aren't You Glad You Didn't Turn on the Light?"
After coming home late and getting ready for bed in the dark, a college coed wakes up the next morning to receive the shock of her life...
Scary Stuff: The Legend of the Hanging Boyfriend
They picked the worst possible night to go necking on Lovers' Lane. Find out why... if you dare!
Was Mr. Rogers a Military Sharpshooter?
Was children's TV show host Mr. Rogers formerly a tattoo-wearing Marine sniper or Navy SEAL with dozens of confirmed kills to his credit?
A Quick Guide to the History of Halloween
What we know (and don't really know) about the history of Halloween, its origins, and how modern Halloween customs and traditions evolved.
Is the "Knockout Perfume" Scam Real?
Criminals are supposedly knocking out victims by getting them to sniff samples of drug-laced perfume or cologne.
2 Versions of a Very Creepy Urban Legend
Also known as 'The Licked Hand.' A popular tale from the oral tradition recast as a spooky -- if not quite believable -- Internet chain letter.
Is Jamie Lee Curtis a Hermaphrodite?
Longstanding (and unproven) rumors claim actress Jamie Lee Curtis is a hermaphrodite, or was born intersex and underwent surgery as a child to become female.
The Babysitter and the Man Upstairs
A teenage babysitter frantically calls the police after receiving prank calls from a stranger who repeatedly inquires after the welfare of the children she's supposed to be taking care of.
The True Origin of the F-Word - Urban Legends
In which we're asked to believe that the word 'fuck' originated as the acronym of 'Fornication Under Consent of the King,' or 'For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge,' or some variation thereof.
What Really Happened to Carmen Winstead?
Internet chain letter tells the story of Carmen Winstead, a 17-year-old girl supposedly pushed down a sewer and killed by a gang of bullies from her school.
Is There Such a Thing as a Black Lion?
Viral image purports to show a rare, all-black lion discovered in Africa.
Beware the Hook Man!
The Hook: A teenager drove his date to Lovers' Lane for a make-out session before it was time to take her home. The place was dark and deserted...
Arachnophobe's Nightmare: The Spider Bite!
Can spider eggs really hatch inside someone's body? Here are two variants of an urban legend about a truly horrible infestation!
How Did the Custom of Bobbing for Apples Get...
On the origin and history of the custom of bobbing for apples on Halloween.
Was Aunt Bee From The Andy Griffith Show Once a...
Viral image purportedly shows the young Frances Bavier (who played Aunt Bee on the Andy Griffith Show) as a 1940s pin-up model.
Why Do We Carve Pumpkins on Halloween?
A brief history of the jack-o'-lantern and how carving faces on pumpkins became a Halloween tradition.
Is That Thing About Facebook Charging \$5.99...
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Synopsis: The
The Laundry Room Killer
A teenage babysitter hears strange noises in the basement, as if someone is turning the clothes dryer on and off. She goes downstairs to investigate.
The Cadaver's Arm
Students in a medical school play a prank on a fellow student using the arm of a cadaver. It doesn't end well.
One Dead Body Under the Mattress Can Ruin Your...
Honeymooners notice a strange odor in their hotel room and decide to peek under the mattress, only to find... The Body Under the Bed!
17 Hysterically Funny Urban Legends!
A hand-picked collection of hysterically funny stories from the Urban Legends archive
The Killer in the Window
A teenage babysitter frantically phones the police after seeing a strange man approaching the sliding glass door near where she's watching TV.
Test Your Urban Legends IQ
Urban Legends Quiz: Test your urban legends IQ!: urban legends iq
Breast Infestation - Urban Legends
Ladies, wash your underwear in boiling water! Viral image and video purport to document a case of larvae infestation of the human breast.
Beware of Drug-Laced Business Cards (and Urban...
Viral rumors warn of criminals using business cards impregnated with a drug called burundanga (scopolamine) to incapacitate victims before attacking them.
Salaries of Charity CEOs Compared - Urban Legends
Viral text purports to compare the salaries of top executives of U.S. and Canadian charitable organizations.
Did JFK Really Tell Germans "I Am a Jelly Donut"?
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Dear Urban Legends:
Myth Busted: A Duck's Quack Doesn't Echo
In which it is claimed that the quack of a duck, unlike every other sound known to man, does not echo. Humbug!
The Killer in the Backseat
Drivers beware - that person following you on the highway may actually be trying to save your life!
Is Urban Legend Debunking Site Snopes.com Biased?
Is there any truth to the claim that Snopes.com is a liberal front organization?
4 Theories About Who Killed Princess Diana
More than 15 years after Princess Diana was killed in a car crash on Aug. 31, 1997, conspiracy theories are still circulating about the circumstances of her death.
Stuff Onions in Your Socks to Cure Disease!
Viral message claims placing raw onions on feet overnight will take away illness or prevent flu. Be skeptical!
The Spider in the Hairdo
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Also known as
No, a Christian Boy Didn't Die for 3 Minutes...
Viral 'news article' says a young Christian boy died briefly on the operating table and claimed he met Allah in heaven after doctors revived him.
The Last Time They Were Seen Alive
A slideshow of startling images purporting to show people milliseconds before meeting their doom. Be skeptical.
The Case of the Choking Doberman
That the Doberman seemed to be choking to death was scary enough. Then they discovered what he was choking on...
Is That Infamous Marie Antoinette Quote You...
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Say what you will
Origin of the S-Word - 'Ship High in Transit' -...
In which we are told, and with a straight face, that the word 'shit' originated as the acronym of 'Ship High in Transit' (or 'Stow High in Transit'), a supposed nautical phrase.
Did You Hear the One About the Vanishing...
The honeymooners came upon a young woman hitchhiking on a deserted road in the middle of the night. They offered her a ride, embarking on a detour they'd never forget.
The Legend of the Tootsie Pop Indian Wrapper
Where did the rumor come from that you could get a free Tootsie Roll Pop (or a whole bag of them) if you found a star (or an Indian, or both) on your wrapper?
The Biggest Snake That Never Was... See Photos!
Viral images purport to show an unbelievably large snake found and killed in the Red Sea by the Egyptian military.
What Really Happened to "The Missing Bride"?
After a lavish wedding in a stately mansion, members of the wedding party play a game of hide-and-seek. It isn't long before everyone is found... everyone, that is, except the bride.
Why Is the Ocean Salty? Whale Sperm! - Urban...
According to this viral message, a typical blue whale produces over 400 gallons of sperm when it ejaculates. And you wonder why the ocean is so salty!
Is There a Nasty Secret Ingredient in Your...
We look into the claim that the secret ingredient responsible for the boost you get from Red Bull and other energy drinks is bull sperm.
Amazing Cell Phone Tips! But Sadly Not Real
Viral message purports to divulge various tips and tricks for cell phone use, including dialing 112 to access a worldwide emergency network. Be skeptical!
Does Dialing 112 in an Emergency Really Help?
Female college student pursued by cop impersonator is rescued by a real police officer after dialing 112 (or *112, or #112) emergency number on her cell phone.
Why Do We Trick-or-Treat on Halloween?
What we actually know about the origin and history of the custom of wearing costumes and trick-or-treating on Halloween.
Do Earwigs Crawl in People's Ears and Eat Their...
Myth Busted: The earwigs is so named because it crawls into sleeping people's ears and eats their brains.
Incredible "Pig Fish" Tastes Like Bacon!
Description: Viral image / Photo hoax Circulating since: Feb. 2013 Status: Fake (see details below) Text
The Terrifying Tale of Bunny Man Bridge
In which we investigate the legend of the Bunny Man, an ax murderer in a bunny suit who has supposedly terrorized Virginia, Maryland, and D.C. for decades.
DOJ & FBI Raid News Media Offices? No, It's...
Fake 'news story' gone viral claims agents of the FBI and DOJ raided the offices of the National Report after it published a scathing story about President Obama.
Do People Really Get Buried Alive?
Once upon a time, before modern embalming techniques were developed, people were indeed found on very rare occasions to have been buried alive.
The Top 25 Urban Legends This Week
Trending urban legends, online rumors and hoaxes
Is This How Big Rattlesnakes Get in Texas?
Apparently they make snakes larger than humans in Texas. Who knew?
10 Things to Know About Slender Man
Who or what is Slender Man, and why is everyone so afraid of him? All your questions answered here!
Read If You Dare: The Knife in the Briefcase
After consenting to give a ride to a good samaritan who helped her fix a flat tire, a female driver suddenly remembers she has a very important appointment and races off without him. Later, she finds he left his briefcase in her back seat. She opens it.
Don't Believe Rumors About a Public Cell Phone...
Viral messages warn that all cell phone numbers will soon go public and instructs users to dial 888-382-1222 to add mobile numbers to the Do Not Call Registry.
Gross Pictures
WARNING: Some viewers may find these images unnerving or offensive. A gallery of viral images notable for their 'ick' factor. Some are authentic, others not. As you'll see, it's not always easy to tell which is which!
Priest Dies, Wakes Up, Claims God Is a Woman....
Fake news story claims a Catholic priest resuscitated after a heart attack says he went to heaven and met God, whom he described as feminine and mother-like.
Can People Look Up My Driver's License on the...
Website purports to offer free, easy access to personal information contained in state driver's license databases.
World's Biggest Dog, or Dumbest Hoax?
Viral photo of a gigantic dog named Hercules, purportedly the Guinness Record holder for Biggest Dog in the World.
Black Jack Pershing vs. Muslim Terrorists -...
Did U.S. Gen. 'Black Jack' Pershing rid the Philippines of Islamic extremism by executing Muslim terrorists and burying them with pig's blood and entrails?
Attack of the Fukushima Mutant Vegetables!
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >The Internet was
You Won't Believe What This Alligator Is Having...
According to the Internet, this very large alligator with a deer in its mouth was spotted in Cross Lake, Louisiana. True or false?
Do Plastic Water Bottles Really Cause Cancer?
Bottled water cancer danger? Viral text warns against drinking bottled water left in a warm car because the heat may cause cancer-producing toxins to 'leak' from the plastic into the water.
Can Tanning Beds Kill?
A young bride-to-be decides she needs a tan, so a week before her wedding day she visits a tanning salon. Then another, then another.
Human-Dog Hybrid (Photo) - Urban Legends
Unsettling viral image of a creature that appears to be a human-dog hybrid suckling her offspring.
Can Listerine Really Be Used as a Mosquito...
Viral text claims spraying an outside area with Listerine mouthwash repels and/or kills every mosquito in the vicinity.
Can Vicks VapoRub on Your Feet Relieve Coughing?
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Description: Home
Check Out the Latest Trending Hoaxes and Urban...
Hoax List from About.com: Current Internet hoaxes, email rumors and urban legends debunked - your resource for information on all the latest misinformation on the Net.
Altoids and Oral Sex - Urban Legends
Altoids lore: Does chewing mints before performing oral sex really enhance the pleasure?
The Spider in the Oreo
Viral image purports to show a spider found smashed inside an Oreo cookie. It appears to be a bit of a prank.
Is There Toxic Benzene in Your Car?
Forwarded email claims car interiors contain toxic levels of cancer-causing benzene and recommends opening windows before turning on the air conditioner.
Read This and You'll Never Eat Cookies in Bed...
Doctors looking for the cause of severe headaches and facial itching in a young child discover that ants have crawled in his ear and infested his brain.
What About Those "Spermicidal" Properties of...
Is it true that the popular American soft drink Mountain Dew can lower a male's sperm count and be used as a contraceptive to prevent pregnancy?
Is the Halal Meat in U.S. Supermarkets Safe to...
Viral message claims that halal meat products being sold in U.S. supermarkets are processed in plants 'notorious' for 'filth and uncleanliness.'
Don't Fall For The \$250 Neiman Marcus Cookie...
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Circulating via
The Long, Long Snake
Viral image purports to show a gigantic snake spotted beside a roadway in Delray, Florida (or the Morganza Spillway near Baton Rouge, La., or Branxton, NSW, Australia, etc.).
What Exactly IS an Urban Legend?
Urban Legends FAQ: What is an urban legend?
Captain Kangaroo and Lee Marvin, War Buddies? -...
In a story supposedly told by actor Lee Marvin on The Tonight Show, he served in the military with fellow U.S. Marine Bob Keeshan ('Captain Kangaroo').
Bill Gates Speech on 11 Rules of Life - Urban...
Circulating virally, the text of a speech allegedly given by Bill Gates setting out 11 Rules of Life kids won't learn in school.
College Application Essay - Urban Legends
A viral hit since 1990, here is the funniest 'college application essay' ever written.
Could Cannibalism Be Alive and Well in Modern...
Dear Urban Legends: I received an email last week which was quite disturbing. It is about dead babies that can be bought from hospitals in Taiwan to meet the high demand for grilled and barbequed babies!
Did the Australian PM Really Tell Muslims to...
Statements falsely attributed to Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard advise Muslim immigrants to learn English and adapt to Australian culture or leave the country.
Who's Afraid of The Slender Man?
The Internet boogeyman known as Slender Man (aka Slenderman) is best described as a crowdsourced fiction.
About Those Alligators in the Sewers of New...
Did you know there are gigantic albino alligators living in the sewers of New York City? No, really! They were flushed down toilet when they were babies.
Did Scientists Really Find Giant Human...
Hoax images purport to show skeletons of human giants (biblical Nephilim or Canaanites) allegedly found in Greece.
Card Trick: I CAN READ YOUR MIND! - Urban Legends
I can read your mind! Don't believe me? Here, I'll prove it!
How We Know the Story of Ciara's Secret Sex...
Internet rumors claim Ciara was born male and is either a secret transvestite or underwent a sex-change operation to become a transsexual.
Can a Floridian Rattlesnake Reach 15 Feet and...
Viral images purport to show a 15-foot-long, 170-pound eastern diamondback rattlesnake caught in a subdivision near Jacksonville, Florida.
Check Out This Amazing Pic of a Rare "Golden...
According to her caretakers at an animal sanctuary in Hawaii, Zoe the golden zebra was born with a condition known as amelanosis, a melanin pigment deficiency.
Why Do They Say Leftover Onions Are Poisonous?
Forwarded email claims leftover onions are 'poisonous' because they're 'a huge magnet for bacteria' and especially prone to spoilage.
McDonald's Job Application
Via forwarded email, an 'actual' job application submitted to McDonald's by one Greg Bulmash in 1997.
Did Obama Really Offer Free Cell Phones to...
Viral rumor claims the Obama administration started a program whereby taxpayer money is being 'redistributed' to provide free cell phones ('Obama phones') to welfare recipients.
Is Barack Obama a Muslim? - Urban Legends
Online rumor alleges that Barack Obama is a Muslim and lied to the American people when he claimed to be a devout Christian.
The Venerable, Versatile Gourd. It's More than...
Is there any human purpose to which the humble gourd has not been put?
Can You Unlock Your Car Door with a Cell Phone?...
Locked out of your automobile? According to this forwarded email, you can have someone transmit a signal from your spare remote key via cell phone and unlock your car door in a pinch.
Did This Man Force a Puppy to Drink Vodka from...
Circulating via social media, this viral image appears to show a puppy being forced to drink vodka from a bottle. Appearances can be deceiving.
Tupac Alive? No, It's a Hoax
Satire website claims slain rapper Tupac Shakur is alive and has finally come out of hiding after nearly 18 years.
Beware of KFC's "Mutant" Chicken!
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >The online rumor
What Do Brown Recluse Spider Bites Look Like?
Viral images purport to show the progressive deterioration of a brown recluse spider bite. Are they real?
Does Flour Really Work as a Burn Remedy?
No. Plain white flour will not stop pain from a burn nor promote healing. Experts say it's better to use cool water, then cover the burn loosely with dry, sterile gauze.
Why Do People Think Friday the 13th Is Unlucky?
As folklorists we may not be able to cure paraskevidekatriaphobia (fear of Friday the 13th), but we can at least lend its sufferers a few good excuses.
Viral "Privacy Notice" on Facebook Has No Legal...
DON'T FALL FOR IT! Viral post purports to protect the privacy and intellectual property rights of Facebook members who copy and paste it to their walls. Not true.
Tupac Is Alive! - Full Text of Purported CNN...
Full text of purported CNN news story reporting the 'resurrection' of Tupac Shakur. This is an Internet hoax perpetrated on April Fools' Day 2005.
Brad Pitt's Love Letter to His Wife
Supposedly a letter written by Brad Pitt to Angelina Jolie, this viral essay extolls the 'secret of love,' namely that given enough hugs, kisses, and compliments a woman will 'blossom' and become 'the reflection of her man.'
Do Birds Really Explode If They Eat Wedding Rice?
People say you shouldn't throw rice at weddings because birds will eat it, the grains will expand in their stomachs, and they will explode. Not true.
What Exactly ARE Urban Legends?
Infrequently answered questions about the whys and wherefores of those silly-yet-irresistable stories called 'urban legends.'
Card Trick
I can read your mind!: card trick cards
Is This "1800-Pound" Wild Boar for Real?
Description: Viral images Circulating since: March 2009 Status: False / Mislabeled Analysis: See last
8 Ways to Spot an Urban Legend
Learn to spot an urban legend. Here are some telltale signs and a few tips and tricks for separating fact from fiction.
Have Giant Mutant Spiders Been Discovered in...
Scary six-legged creatures are described as giant spiders released from a government DNA laboratory.
Have You Ever Seen a 7-Headed Snake? Click If...
Viral images purport to show a 7-headed snake (or a 5-headed, or 3-headed snake, depending on version) found in Honduras (or India, etc.).
Gold Ring Test for Lead in Lipstick - Urban...
Viral alert claims major-brand lipsticks contain 'cancer-causing' lead, which consumers can test for by scratching the surface of a product with a 24K gold ring.
Mermaid Body Found After Tsunami!
Viral images allegedly show the carcass of a dead mermaid found washed up on a beach near Chennai, India after a tsunami.
Is the Old Story about Kidney Thieves True?
Rumors can spread like viruses, and are sometimes just as lethal. Case in point, 'The Kidney Thieves.'
Is Halloween Candy Tampering Just a Myth?
We've become so accustomed to monitoring our children's Halloween candy for needles, razor blades, poison, and other adulterants that we rarely stop to wonder how real the danger is. In point of fact, research shows that actual instances of 'Halloween sadism' are rare.
Is a Dog's Mouth Cleaner Than a Human's?
If you don't mind my falling back on a gut feeling, I'd rather be French-kissed by a human being than a dog any day.
John Cleese Letter to America (Notice of...
Dec. 2004 variant of 'Notice of Revocation of Independence' purportedly authored by John Cleese.
Did Someone Put AIDS-Infected Blood in Pepsi...
Pepsi contaminated with AIDS? Online rumor claims a worker tainted Pepsi products with HIV-positive blood.
Pictures: Dead Mermaid Found in the Philippines
Emailed pictures purportedly show the carcass of a dead mermaid caught by a fisherman in the Philippines.
Breast Larvae Infestation?
Viral image purports to show a larvae infestation of the human breast. It's a hoax.
Here's One Reason Not to Accept Anonymous...
A newlywed couple receives a pair of theater tickets as an anonymous wedding gift. They learn the hard way that the gift giver had ulterior motives.
What an Old Hopi Legend Says About Sex
Here's what Hopi mythology has to say about sex... and a certain peculiarity of the male sex organ in particular.
Why Are People Saying Tommy Hilfiger Is a Racist?
About those rumors that fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger made racist statements on the Oprah Winfrey Show...
Gerbilling Mishap Injures Two - Urban Legends
Two people injured in gerbilling mishap (another insult to the reputation of gerbils everywhere).
Are Members of Congress Really Exempt from Laws?
Proposed 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: 'Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators and/or Representatives.'
Did a 600-Pound Woman Give Birth to a 40-Pound...
Viral 'news article' claims a 600-pound woman in Perth, Australia gave birth to a 40-pound baby. Consider the source!
Good Luck, Mr. Gorsky! - Urban Legends
An apocryphal footnote to the history of Neil Armstrong's Apollo 11 lunar landing and moonwalk.
Is the "Pet in the Microwave" Urban Legend True?
In this classic urban legend, an elderly woman comes up with a novel way to dry her soggy pet in a hurry. It doesn't go so well.
Do Bar Codes Reveal Where a Product Is Made?
Viral messages claims potentially hazardous products made in China can be identified by looking at the first three digits of the bar code on the packaging, which supposedly indicate the country of origin.
Did They Finally Find Obama's "Foreign Student"...
Viral image purports to show Barack Obama's 1981 student ID card from Columbia University, listing him as a 'foreign student.' Unsurprisingly, it's a hoax.
Did Einstein Prove that God Exists?
Einstein's proof of God? In this viral anecdote of unknown origin, a university student named Albert Einstein humiliates his atheist professor by proving that God exists.
Watch Doctors Pull a Live Worm Out of This...
Viral images purportedly show doctors removing a live worm from a patient's eye. Are they real or fake?
That Study Linking Staring at Women's Breasts...
'Medical study' supposedly published in the New England Journal of Medicine claims staring at women's breasts improves heart health and lengthens lifespan in men.
Was the Flush Toilet Invented by a Man Named...
Is it true that a 19th-century British plumber named Sir Thomas Crapper (aka John Crapper) invented the flush toilet?
Is Facebook Going to Start Charging Membership...
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Synopsis: Online
Can Raw Onions Really Absorb Germs and Prevent...
Viral message claims raw sliced onions will 'collect' or 'absorb' any flu virus present in a home and protect household members from influenza.
Is This What They Mean by "Panda Diplomacy"?
Viral image purports to show a 'real panda' flying on a plane, gnawing on bamboo shoots in business class beside a human passenger.
Work Moose in Harness (Moose Logging) - Urban...
Viral image purportedly shows a full-grown 'work moose' being harnessed to haul wood in a logging operation. Stated location varies.
Skogsra Are Strange, Scary Creatures in Swedish...
Skogsra, the beautiful woodland spirits in Swedish folklore, are known for causing trouble; a lot of trouble.

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