Earlier today a pretty obvious hoax about the next-gen Xbox simply being called “Xbox” and acting as some kind of hub for the “X-Surface” hit some internet news sites. Pocket-Lint were first to run with it since the prankster sent them some admittedly feasible information acting as an anonymous source.
But whilst Kinect for Project Natal may have taken a bit of time getting used – no way could I believe that Microsoft were going to call an upcoming tablet device “X-Surface”, I’d like to think one of the corporations I admire most on this earth was more imaginative than that!
The prankster has taken to a blog to show images of how he conned gaming news sites into believing his leak of information:
At 1:41am GMT today I sent out an email to a bunch of gaming sites claiming to be a Microsoft employee working on the new Xbox.
I made up every single word of it along with a couple of specs copied from other rumours that have been appearing on the Internet.
This was a bit of an experiment to see just how easy it is to get a fake story taken seriously. And it is shockingly easy in the games industry.
Then not content at that – the prankster has a snipe at CVG:
Whether he believed the story or not, his angry and egotistical response was absolutely shocking. That person is Rob Crossley, the associate editor for CVG – and he has shown himself to be the most repugnant person I’ve ever known in the gaming world.
I would hope he doesn’t speak to every tipster like that – he accused me of being 18 years old with no job, right off the bat (oh how wrong he was).
I didn’t want to call anybody out by name, but as I have received multiple insulting emails since the truth came out, I felt I should do so with him.
A very similar hoax happened in 2010 about the Xbox Slim shortly before E3 that year, although a slimmer Xbox was actually “REAL”, all the information and specs in the leak was false – then the original prankster took to a blog and vented his frustration.
I am of the opinion that todays recent hoax is by a journalist for a gaming site just wanting to take the piss. The best rule of thumb is just to delete any email that comes from GMAIL no matter how great the content within it sounds.
We did not post any of the original information about X-Surface, but previous rumours have pointed to a tablet device being used in the same way with the next-gen Xbox as what the Nintendo Wii U has accomplished with their new screen-based controller.
When an official announcement or leaks from our trusted known sources are in – we’ll keep you informed.