Archive for March, 2011
Apr. 1, 1952: Swedish national television does a special showing how to convert a black-and-white television to color by putting a nylon stocking over the screen, including a long description of the physics behind the phenomena.
1965: BBC pretends it is conducting a trial of “Smell-o-Vision,” a new technology allowing the transmission of odors over the airwaves. Numerous callers report the experiment a success.
1969: Dutch TV news announces a new device to detect an unlicensed television (Dutch viewers are taxed on their televisions) from outside the house, that can only be overcome by wrapping the set in aluminum foil. The following day, aluminum foil will sell out around the nation.
1976: Sir Patrick Moore, a British astronomer, announces on BBC 2 that a unique alignment of Jupiter and Pluto will result in an upward gravitational effect, making people lighter at 9:47 A.M. Dozens of people call in to report that they had followed his recommendation to jump up and experienced “a strange floating sensation” he claimed they would feel.
1980: The BBC reports that Big Ben will be replaced by a digital clock.
1983: Australian millionaire Dick Smith claims to have towed an iceberg from Antarctica to Sydney Harbour. He uses a barge covered with whige plastic and fire extinguisher foam as a prop.
1993: Disc jockey Dave Rickards of KGB-FM in San Diego tells listeners that the space shuttle Discovery has been diverted from Edwards AFB and will be landing instead at Montgomery Field, whose runway is only 4500 feet long. Despite no shuttle being in orbit at the time, thousands show up to see the landing.
1996: Burger King announces the new “left-handed Whopper,” which drips condiments out of the right side, for left-handed people. Many requested this item, and many others requested the “right-handed” burger.
2003: Many Chinese and Korean websites claim that Bill Gates has been assassinated, resulting a serious drop in the South Korean stock market.
2004: A British TV show announces that the Yorkshire Water company has discovered a new “diet tap water” that helped one person to lose 21 pounds in four months. The story mentions that a third tap would be available to allow customers easy access to the water. The next day, Yorkshire Water receives nearly 10,000 calls about the water.
2008: National Public Radio reports that the IRS, in order to ensure that tax refunds will be spent, will be shipping consumer merchandise instead of checks.
2008: Monty Python alum Terry Jones reports on BBC about a newly discovered colony of flying penguins, and the program follows their flight to the Amazon rainforest.
2009: Radio station WIXE in Monroe, North Carolina, claims it is changing its format from Country and Gospel music to Heavy metal. The station receives numerous phone calls, but at least half are from listeners requesting heavy metal songs.
2010: A British newspaper, The Sun, announces that its product is now “Scratch and Sniff,” resulting in a “rash” of readers seen scratching and sniffing the newspaper.