Urban myth

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An urban myth (or urban legend) is a tale that is passed around as true and, as with Chinese whispers, alters slightly over time. Many urban myths are simply ghost stories which play on common fears while others are parables meant to have a moral, much like a fairy tale. Because of the lack of detail in most urban myths, it is usually very difficult to track down where they originated.

In one instance, an urban myth actually became a notable country music hit.[1]
  1. Snopes article on The Little Girl song origin