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The three edits of the anonymous user who added the hoax.

The Jar'Edo Wens hoax was a deliberately fictitious Wikipedia article, which existed for almost 10 years before being spotted in November 2014 and deleted in March 2015. At the time, it was the longest-lasting hoax article discovered in the history of Wikipedia.

The unsourced article claimed to be about an Australian Aborigine god ("of earthly knowledge and physical might, created by Altjira to ensure that people did not get too arrogant or self-conceited. He is associated with victory and intelligence."), and was likely simply the name "Jared Owens", with different spacing, punctuation and casing.[1][2][3][4][5] The author, an unregistered user at an Australian IP address, was active over an eleven-minute period in May 2005. Their only other contribution was to also add "Yohrmum" (likely being a re-spelling of "Your Mum") to a list of Australian deities. This was more quickly spotted and removed.

The hoax was unwittingly copied into a book on atheism in 2012, as part of a long list of "gods and religions in history that have fallen out of favour".[6][5]

Since 2005, due to the Seigenthaler incident, article creation has been restricted to registered users, making fake articles more difficult to establish.[7] However, people could still edit using IP addresses, but some articles are protected against vandalism (visible as a lock on the edit button).

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "The story behind Jar'Edo Wens, the longest-running hoax in Wikipedia history". Washington Post.
  2. ^ Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post (17 April 2015). "The story of Jar'Edo Wens, the longest-running Wikipedia hoax, and why it's so hard to police the free encyclopedia - National Post". National Post.
  3. ^ "The Wikipedia hoax that lasted nearly 10 years".
  4. ^ "Aussie's Jar'Edo Wens prank sets new record as Wikipedia's longest-running hoax". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  5. ^ a b Andy Cush. "How One Man Made Himself Into an Aboriginal God With Wikipedia". Weird Internet. Gawker Media. Archived from the original on 2015-07-09.
  6. ^ McCormick, Matthew S. (2012). "Fiver Hundred Dead Gods and the Problems of Other Religions". Atheism and the Case Against Christ. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books.
  7. ^ Goodin, Dan. "False claim has Wikipedia revising article-creation rules". Seattle Times. Retrieved 5 October 2015.