All Right, Erik, You Got Us

A widely reported story that the rock group Metallica was suing a little-known Canadian band for trademark violation over the use of the chords E and F (in that order) has turned out to be an elaborate hoax by a Canadian satirist and aspiring musician. Erik Ashley got the story (very realistically masquerading as a news item on MTV’s web site) past dozens of radio news directors, the online news source Ananova, and (sigh) not one, but two ArtsJournal editors. The beauty of the hoax, of course, is that the story is preposterous, yet, given Metallica’s litigious history, entirely plausible as well. No word on whether Metallica plans to sue Ashley for defamation.