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Joey Skaggs

Joey Skaggs
Born 1945 (age 64–65)
Occupation Prankster, Writer

Joey Skaggs (born 1945) is an American prankster who has organized numerous successful media pranks, hoaxes, and other presentations. He is considered one of the originators of the phenomenon known as culture jamming. Skaggs used Kim Yung Soo,[1][2][3] Joe Bones,[4] Joseph Bonuso,[5][6] Giuseppe Scaggioli, Dr. Joseph Gergor, and the Rev. Anthony Joseph as aliases. [7]

In his youth, Skaggs studied at the High School of Art and Design and School of Visual Arts in New York. Between 1966 and 1968, Skaggs organized crucifixion performances on Easter Sundays.

In 1968, Skaggs noticed that middle-class suburbanites were going on tours of the East Village to observe hippies. Skaggs subsequently organized a sightseeing tour for hippies to observe the suburbs of Queens. On Christmas Day, he created the Vietnamese Christmas Nativity Burning to protest against the Vietnam War.

In 1969, Skaggs tied a 50-foot bra to the front of the U.S. Treasury building on Wall Street, organized a Hells Angels' wedding procession through the Lower East Side, and made grotesque Statues of Liberty on the 4th of July, again to protest against the Vietnam War.

In 1971, Skaggs bought Earlville Opera House. In the same year, he organized what he called a Fame Exchange during the New York Avant Garde Festival, where he hired a group of admirers to follow him around instead of John Lennon and Yoko Ono. It was a forerunner for his next pranks:

According to his web site, Skaggs does not care for "vicious" pranks such as letters containing fake anthrax; he also states that he is not doing anything illegal. He hires actors to play his customers, refusing to really scam anyone except the media. Often the prank is nothing more than a press release with a phone number; in these press releases, Skaggs leaves hints or details that easily could be checked for accuracy. Eventually, he reveals the hoax to make his point.

On a couple of occasions, Skaggs sent a substitute to interviews with programs such as Entertainment Tonight and To Tell the Truth. Producers did not notice. [7] Also, photographs in the National Enquirer and Playback magazine have depicted the wrong man.

Many of Skaggs's pranks are originally reported as true in various news media. Sometimes the stories are retracted.

When not pranking the media, Skaggs earns his living by painting, making sculptures and lecturing.

[edit] References

  1. ^ Yang, Jeff. "ASIAN POP Putting On The Dog." San Francisco Chronicle. Thursday October 13, 2005.
  2. ^ Kennedy, Mike. "Relax, Rover: 'Dogs for food' was just a hoax Exposing racism and bias was the aim says a New York artist." Kansas City Star. May 28, 1994. C3.
  3. ^ Sinisi, J. Sebastian. "Fido-as-food letter offends Offer to buy dogs is apparent hoax." Denver Post. May 21, 1994. B-1.
  4. ^ Starita, Joe. "FAT SQUAD HOAX HOOKED THE MEDIA." San Jose Mercury News. May 17, 1986. 1C.
  5. ^ Poniewozik, James. "Justice in the Blood." TIME. Monday November 13, 2000.
  6. ^ Landler, Mark. "MEDIA: PRESS;Joey Skaggs, who delights in practical jokes on the press, has got a million of them." The New York Times. January 29, 1996. 1.
  7. ^ a b "Korean Dog Soup," Snopes

[edit] External links

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