The Strange Case of the Faux Nobel Literature Prize Website


This morning, most of the Western world woke up to the news that the Swedish Academy had awarded their countryman Tomas Tranströmer (again, not Bob Dylan) the Nobel Prize for Literature. Minutes earlier, however, Serbian newspaper readers were informed that their very own Dobrica Cosic had won the prize. As Jacket Copy reports, the culprit turns out to be a fake website ( that was just purchased yesterday and mimicked the design of the real Nobel Prize homepage. The pranksters behind the site also emailed the announcement of his victory to news outlets. Now that has been outed as a hoax, the group that created it — which bills itself as a “non-profit, self-organized group of web activists” — has posted a different message, in both Croatian and (somewhat broken) English. Read what they have to say for themselves after the jump.

We are a non-profit, self-organized group of web activists. The purpose of our activity is to bring to the attention of the Serbian public dangerous influence of the writer Dobrica Cosic, who has been, again this year, proclaimed by some as a serious contender for the Nobel Prize in Literature. Dobrica Cosic, author and public political figure, active for decades, always close to the highest political power and those who exercise it, from the Communist Party of former SFRY, inspirators of their manifest of Serbian nationalism, infamous Memorandum of the Serbian Academy of sciences, former president of the Milosevic’s wartime SR Yugoslavia, to present alliance with reactionary and most dangerous Serbian pseudo-democratic circles in the new era. We have registered the domain of this obviously hoax site on the 5th October 2011, as a symbolic reminder of that day eleven years ago, when Serbia missed a historic opportunity to create a different and better world. Today again, Serbia turns to war, terror and deadly kitsch of the nineties, violence towards diversity, nationalist conservatism and dishonest orthodoxy. We believe the political activity of Dobrica Cosic is still deeply intertwined with this hazardous value system, which does not cease to threaten us all. Terrible consequences of decades of Mr. Cosic’s political, literary and public activity are felt to this day, both by his own country and throughout the region. Dobrica Cosic is not a recipient of the Nobel Prize, although the general public in Serbia, and he himself, believed he is for 15 full minutes. We find some solace in that fact.