Just in time for April Fool's Day, we learn that a Derbyshire resident (who wishes to remain anonymous - what are the odds?!) has discovered a mummified fairy. Check out the photos - they're awesome.
I haven't enjoyed an elaborate hoax this much since the pickled dragon from Oxfordshire. I'd say this demonstrates that the British are world leaders when it comes to establishing a good prank, especially when you also take into account the Cottingley Fairies.
In my role as an advertising copywriter, I once wrote an outlandish character blog to tie in with a television ad campaign. I did a lot of research and loaded it with the most ridiculous and incongruous details I could think of. Characters from fiction and mythology appeared, as did many tall tale elements from American folklore. My goal was to make sure that nobody could take it seriously.
Of course, there were still a handful of people whose "face value" switch doesn't operate properly. They left indignant and argumentative comments about how scientifically improbable the stories were. Well, yeah, and did you notice that one of the characters was a Norse god?
That's why hoaxes will always entertain us. Even though the uber-skeptics like me will immediately clue in, enough people will want to believe to keep a few seeds of doubt planted in the mind of the public until actual evidence surfaces. Then we'll have to move on to a fun new hoax.