(CNN)We've heard it all so many times before: If it sounds too good to be true...
And yet, everyday, the internet falls prey to yet another hoax.
The latest one doing the rounds on your Facebook feed? A liquored-up tale of male bonding so bizarre it could put "The Hangover" to shame.
First reported by the Daily Mirror, three boozed up Brits got on a dolphin-watching boat after a night of partying in Cyprus -- and ended up in Syria.
They were met by -- and mocked by -- Russian military police at a base in Tartus before finally getting back to their boat.
The story, with pictures to boot, rocketed around the globe -- from British tabs to Aussie outlets.
Great story. But totally fake.
And a closer reading would have been the first clues. The quotes were perfect -- almost too perfect.
And the man doing the quoting, Lewis Ellis, is an internet prankster with a YouTube channel dedicated to his hijinks.
So somebody somewhere failed to do their due diligence in reporting. Tsk, tsk, journalists.
Ellis gleefully shared links as different media sites ran with the piece.
When a friend asked "So u didnt get on wrong boat," he let the cat out of the bag:
"Naa we just made it up for fun."
Well played, Ellis. Well played.