Finger Box or "fingerbox" is a tactile art piece created by Ay-O in the 1960s. The boxes are small hollow cubes with a hole in the side. These boxes are filled with various objects, such as hair, cotton balls, nails. It is then on the art's observer to put their fingers in the hole of the box. Online, people have used the box as a type of prank, where in which people ask about the box and others pretend to know what it is and to have owned one since childhood. When someone asks what the box is, others in the thread mock the person who asked.
The first finger box was reportedly invented by the artist A-yo in 1964 (examples below). However, this has been disputed, with some saying that the finger box was created before World War II. The boxes were small wooden boxes filled with various items. The observer would then put their fingers into the whole of the box to feel the contents inside.
The earliest available iteration of the finger box being used as a prank online occured in August 2010. That day, an anonymous 4chan user posted an image (shown below) of a finger box with the caption "FINGERBOXGAGS GET IN HERE / Post success stories."
"A finger box all though it may seem to be a relatively simple device, it is not on the contrary of being simple a finger box is more than a box with a hole in it, it is a massively complex device containing more than a thousand separate components per box, usually with nine boxes per set that makes over nine thousand separate components, but the device will work limitedly with just one box.
"Finger boxing is also known as fingering and boxing and is a massive fad among teens aged 13-18, the device in a simpler form were first invented by William John Trolington over 100 years ago in Australia.
"A Finger box basically simulates a feeling, originally this was accomplished with mechanical devices in the box with some extremely cruel pranksters putting item such as glass and nails in witch would often decapitate the finger, this led to a act of parliament in 1919 by the UK banning the devices, which was quickly followed by the rest of the world.
"Although still banned the “underground market” of finger boxes saw a boom in sales during the 1980’s and was redeveloped into its current electrical module in the mid 1990’s by an unnamed Chinese worker.
"The device works on the same principals as electrical prosthetic limbs, an electrical impulse is shot up the nervous system that will make the hand think that it is feeling something; anything can be simulated such as stroking a cat or shaking a hand.
"The finger box costs around £50 per box and are usually sold out within minutes they have reportedly have gone for over 200 per box on ebay."
On October 20th, the website Urlesque published an article explaining the history and rise of Finger Boxes. On the inception of Finger Boxes, they write:
"Someone found a picture of a box with finger-sized holes in it during a random Google Image Search. The person thought it might be funny to troll 4chan with it, so he posted the image along with a caption like, "Check out my fingerbox. Jealous?" Then dozens of people saw the thread and tried to figure out what it was all about, then they found all of Ay-O's fingerboxes, so they integrated those into the mythology of this troll.
"The fingerbox is a growing meme. The trick is to offer elaborate descriptions of the fingerbox, while remaining vague about its intended use. Some trolls imply that they use the fingerbox for sexual purposes. Others have hinted that it's meant for relaxation or play."
On November 30th, Urban Dictionary  user slywinkle defined "fingerbox" as "Originally, an art installation by AY-O, a Japanese artist. However, since that time, competitive fingerboxing has become quite popular. Professional fingerboxers can use up to 8-hole fingerboxes. Obviously, anything greater than 8-holes is purely for entertainment purposes and trickery (Like the Harlem Globetrotters.) / Proponents of fingerboxing assert that it improves confidence and dexterity." The post (shown below) received more than 185 upvotes in seven years.
On April 17th, 2012, an anonymous user on 4chan's /b/ message board posted an image of a finger in a fingerbox with the caption "What does /b/ think of my new fingerbox." After another user asked, "What a finger box," another user posted a picture of a judge's gavel with the caption "newfag detected."