What is Fauxtography?
Well, it’s a new term to me but I’ve just read it on Snopes and presume this was coined by them and, in my opinion, this is a good term to describe what this blog is about.
I’ve previously dealt with the issues of image manipulation, pareidolia and debunking and this continues in a similar vein so let’s go back to 2014 and the “roadside crash spirit” being posted on the internet as proof of “a soul leaving the body of a crash victim”.
The Youtube caption reads “Ghost spirit caught at accident site – Shocking spirits caught leaving body” and was published on 26 May 2014.
The video shows an ambulance crew attending to the body of a victim in a road traffic accident and purportedly shows the “soul” of the victim rising from the body.
An awful lot of people were taken in by this and were sharing it willy-nilly as proof of the afterlife. However, of all the hundreds of viewers, very few bothered to read the text that had been posted with the video by the film-maker which was underneath the video and less obvious. it reads thus:-
GhostHunters is all about ghost(sic). Ghost are everywhere on our channel. Ghost caught on tape, paranormal activities, Haunted places, or ghost possessions. We feature ghosts in every possible way.
These video are for entertainment. I think peoples are looking for ghost caught stuff on internet so i shot these videos. To see the video go to Roadside Crash spirit
Towards the very bottom of the page you’ll see this:-
DISCLAIMER: I shot and uploaded all videos here and I own all commercial rights, please do not try to reuse and upload elsewhere. These small films shows different ghost caught situations in fictional way. It might be scary for some viewer but these are meant for Entertainment purpose only. It just a movie not real. Video Credit:Creative Commons Licence:
Please, don’t go telling anyone this is real – the originator has even told us that is isn’t!
“Chilling” Spirit – Angel dust?
This photo is supposedly showing a soul ascending from the body at another crash scene only this one was posted on Facebook on the 12th July 2016 saying it was taken of a traffic accident in Kentucky.
Can this be evidence of an afterlife?
Well, actually, no! Snopes was pretty quick on the draw with this one and posted on the 14th July to scotch any rumours of evidence and tell us it’s false. Whilst the person who took the photo is adamant that he hasn’t altered the photo, he’s certainly caused a bit of a sensation! Saul Vazquez, the man who took the photo, posted it on Facebook and said he took it from the cab of his truck. It has since been shared over 16,000 times in just 10 hours.
Snopes gives us this conclusion:
It’s absolutely possible, even probable, that the photo was not altered. However, this photograph doesn’t show a spirit or an angel, but what’s most likely an irregularly-shaped piece of dirt that has stuck to either the lens or the camera’s internal sensor. Dirt or dust on the sensor of a camera assumes a greyish and fuzzy appearance in a photograph (and sometimes shows up as luminescent balls in night or high-contrast photography, to which the paranormally-minded sometimes refer as “spirit orbs“).
You can read the whole of the Snopes article here fatal-crash-spirit-photograph
From the above I can only say there are elements of pareidolia and photo-manipulation – even if the person taking the photo didn’t intend any deceit (since they were also deceived into thinking they saw something that wasn’t what they thought it was) and a whole lot of gullible people! I refer you to my blog about the Hospital Demon Debunked as a further instance where what people saw wasn’t actually what was there!
Have you seen other pictures (debunked or not) that are similar to the examples I have quoted?
I’d love to hear from you about my blog. I appreciate constructive criticism and welcome debate and discussion.