Wikipedia:Before assuming something is a hoax

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When you see a new article on something you never heard of -- and you find it all a bit hard to believe -- what should you do?

Is it really a hoax?[edit]

It is a hoax? Maybe. Over the years, many hoaxes have had Wikipedia articles. Some have been deleted on the spot. Others which are plausible have passed review and remained for a long time. They have been copied to other sites, and read and believed by many. Before long, they have become urban legends.

Before assuming this new page you are looking at is one of these cases, you need to look at the topic carefully. Try to verify that it is, indeed, a hoax before removing it.

So what if it is a hoax?[edit]

Sometimes the hoax itself can be notable. In October 2009, a young boy was presumed to be floating in an out of control homemade balloon. The incident turned into the Balloon boy hoax. If the hoax itself qualifies for inclusion under the general notability guidelines then it should be included in the encyclopedia.