Phuc Dat Bich was a hoax - but what is his real name?
AN AUSTRALIAN man whose unique name made international headlines has finally admitted it was a prank.
In January, "Phuc Dat Bich" posted a photo of his passport online saying that his Facebook account was shut down several times because administrators did not believe he was using his real name.
Since then the passport image has been shared almost 85,000 times and liked more than 165,000 times.
"I find it highly irritating that nobody seems to believe me when I say my full legal name is how you see it," he wrote on Facebook alongside the photo at the time.
"I've been accused of using a false and misleading name which I find very offensive.
Is it because I'm Asian? Is it?
"Having my [Facebook] shut down multiple times and [being] forced to change my name to my 'real' name, so just to put it out there. My name. Yours sincerely, Phuc Dat Bich."
But then a former a Melbourne classmate of "Phuc" told Mashable that his real name was Thien Nguyen and provided a school photo of "Phuc".
Following claims about his name, "Phuc" came clean, sort of, and in a new Facebook post, the man - who now identifies himself as "Joe Carr" - likens himself to the boy who cried wolf.
He starts his confession by saying: "Do you remember the story, The boy who cried wolf? Imagine that boy grew up into a mischievous man with 21st century technology at his fingertips."
He ends the post: "Yours sincerely, Joe Carr aka PDB."
Both posts have since been removed, adding to the mystery.
Australia's SBS News reported that it had been unable to verify if Joe Carr was the man's real name.
His new post at 6.44pm last night came just hours after SBS News contacted him with concerns.
Its Vietnamese programme found his supposedly Vietnamese name "highly unlikely to be real", because Bich was never used as a surname. "I've never believed it's necessary for it to be mandatory to have your entire name to be published on social media," the prankster wrote on Facebook yesterday.
"People should be free to use any name they desire. Facebook needs to understand that it is utterly impossible to legitimise a place where there will always be pranksters and tricksters."
The episode showed that an "average Joe" like him could con the biggest news sources with ease, he said.
"I want to acknowledge the supportive individuals who have encouraged those with truly interesting and idiosyncratic names that populate in different cultures. Hate and discrimination will remain if we continue to be so closed-minded.
"To those who do have culturally specific and spectacular names, ignore the ignorance in those who may try to put you down. Continue being the best person you can be and make your mark on the world in whatever way you can - even if it is a simple prank."