Pacific Northwest tree octopus: Difference between revisions

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== References ==
 
== References ==
 
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==External links==
 
==External links==

Revision as of 02:19, 30 July 2010

The Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus was an internet hoax created in 1998 by Lyle Zapato.[1] This fictitious endangered species of cephalopod was given the Latin name "Octopus paxarbolis" (which roughly means, "Pacific tree octopus"). It was purported to be able to live both on land and in water, and was said to live in the Olympic National Forest and nearby rivers, spawning in water where their eggs are laid. Its major predator was said to be the Sasquatch.

The Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus website is among a number of sites commonly used in Internet literacy classes in schools, although it was not created for that purpose. Despite the falsehoods shown on the site, such as its support by "GreenPeas.org," the mentioning of other hoax species such as the Rock Nest Monster, the mountain walrus,[2] and its affiliation with People for the Ethical Treatment of Pumpkins (P.E.T.PU.) (mixed with links to pages about real species and organizations), 24 of 25 students involved in one well-publicized test believed the content.[3][4]

The tree-climbing octopus was mentioned in Terry Pratchett's novel Nation.

Soon other people began to make fake photos of the tree octopus by editing, or by photographing toys and stuffed animals in a similar "habitat".[5]

References

  1. ^ Lyle Zapato. "Help Save The Endangered Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus From Extinction! yea man". 
  2. ^ http://mountainwalrus.webs.com
  3. ^ Beth Krane (November 13, 2006). "Researchers find kids need better online academic skills". UComm Advance YYYYYYYYY. University of Connecticut. 25 (12). Retrieved 2008-01-11. Don Leu, Chair in Literacy and Technology at UConn, "... anyone can publish anything on the Internet, and today's students are not prepared to critically evaluate the information they find there." 
  4. ^ Matthew Bettelheim (March 14, 2007). "Tentacled Tree Hugger Disarms Seventh Graders". Inkling. Of the 25 seventh-graders identified as their schools’ best online readers, 24 recommended this bogus website to another class that Leu had told them was also researching endangered species. 
  5. ^ "Western Redcedar climbing octopus, Thujoctopus pilosa". April 1, 2009. 

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External links