Site Update

The MandelaEffect.com website may look different to you.

Two days ago, my hosting service confirmed what I’d suspected, last week: The site had been hit by DDoS attacks, twice in one week. (I have no idea why, unless someone really doesn’t like this topic.)

So, this site was offline for about 48 hours. Now, it’s back and — fingers crossed — everything will be okay. But, to be very sure none of the server issues are caused by normal traffic surges, I’ve changed many things to improve site performance, including a new WordPress theme.

If this site goes offline again, I’m going to replace it with a few HTML pages that cover the main points, and direct people to the mirror site (https://mandelaeffectsite.wordpress.com/ ) or to the May 2016 version of the site at the Wayback Machine.

Neither of those is a complete site. Both have some navigation and graphics issues. I’m working on the mirror site to improve it as much as I can. That will probably be an ongoing project for the next couple of weeks.

For now, the site is here. I’m still going through the comments — old and new — to compile and analyze the data. I will update the Memories page with new entries. I’m also hoping to spot some patterns in the reports… all ~13,000 of them. (In other words, this isn’t an afternoon project.)

I appreciate your interest in the Mandela Effect, and the comments, alternate memories, and theories you’re sending me. They’re important, and I’m grateful for your help.

Thank you!

Site Restored

Last week, a MandelaEffect.com traffic spike put my hosting account at risk. As a temporary fix for the weekend, I removed this site’s content.

It’s possible the traffic was the result of an article at Snopes, followed by mentions at popular YouTube channels and several large, relevant websites.

However, some markers suggested more mundane issues. For all I know, a bunch of bored people routinely see a new article at Snopes, and that’s their bots’ target du jour. (If that’s confusing, don’t worry. It’s nothing sinister.)

The problem is: If this issue resumes and my hosting service is suspended, I’ll need to move this website. (I’ve already identified different hosting better able to handle this kind of service issue.)

If that happens, this site may be offline for days. So, short term, I’m setting up a mirror site: https://mandelaeffectsite.wordpress.com/

Two things you need to know:

  • To avoid visitor confusion, I’ve asked WordPress.com to discourage search engine indexing on the site. (I will add it to my FionaBroome.com list of websites.)
  • Most internal links at the mirror site are broken. They must be manually changed, one-by-one, and that will take days (or longer). However, nearly all of the content at the mirror site is identical to what was here, as of 5 Aug 2016. If you have patience, you can find what you’re looking for, at that mirror.

Snopes’ Summary

People have asked about my reaction to the Snopes article.

Simply, it’s Snopes. Of course the article is skeptical. That’s what they do, and I appreciate Snopes as a resource.

I just don’t agree with them on all points, regarding the Mandela Effect, but that’s okay. They gave a surprisingly detailed explanation of this theory, and I’m pleased with that.

I’ve never insisted that my explanation for alternate memories is the only one, or even the correct one. It’s a theory, not a dogma.

I’m happy to let people say whatever they like at Reddit, at YouTube, and so on. When a topic is as odd as the Mandela Effect, it’s vital to consider every possible explanation.

What I’m Working On

A few people have asked why I really closed comments at this site, and went relatively silence.

It’s no secret. Really. As I explained in my previous article, the popularity of this website had outgrown my ability to moderate comments and still pursue my “day job.”

I’m self-employed. My income is from my books, related products, and the occasional speaking gig. Simply, my “day job” involves researching and writing about unexplained phenomena, mostly ghost-related. (And, to be clear, if you’re not familiar with my other research: I’m at least 80% skeptical of ghost stories, at least at face value. I believe odd things occur at “haunted” sites, but I’m not convinced they’re all caused by ghosts or spirits.)

While I appreciate the lofty and creative explanations some people have suggested, my work really is what I say it is. I’m just someone who’s fascinated by “what if…?” questions, and I throw articles (and sometimes complete websites) online, to share my thoughts and collect insights from other people. My only goal is to find better answers to my sometimes-quirky questions about “blips” in accepted reality, and share my discoveries with you.

Media Requests

I’ve received requests to be on TV shows, on radio shows, and in documentaries. In fact, I can’t reply to all the requests individually, so here’s my answer: No, thank you. I’m flattered by the invitations, but I’m a very private — and busy — person. I’ve never wanted a TV show. I don’t have time for radio right now. A documentary might be a good idea, later, but not at this point in the research.

What’s Next

Right now, I’m updating my ghost-related books (some of them hideously outdated) and freebies so they’re ready for “ghost season,” aka Halloween.

Also, I’m still compiling, analyzing, and evaluating the more than 10,000 comments at this website (and thousands of fresh reports via email), to see patterns in them — what they have in common, and where they’re wildly different. That analysis might help explain what’s going on… at least part of it.

Mostly, I appreciate your interest in the Mandela Effect, and I’m doing my best to keep this website online, and add more insights as I find them.

Major Site Changes

Same or change?For the past week or so, I’ve been wrestling with a dilemma: Whether or not to make sweeping changes at the MandelaEffect.com website.

It’s not a new issue, but — after a nearly a year of indecision — I can’t compromise my research time, moderating comments.

It’s not just the time spent weeding out “you’re just confused” insults — currently about 50% of daily comments. I’m also looking at the hours spent double-checking topics & references, before approving sincere and helpful comments.

Also, in some respects, this site has become redundant. Many comments are mere summaries of what’s been said about this topic, at active and vibrant forums including Reddit and AboveTopSecret.  (I applaud their work. They have far more resources than I do, to host and encourage discussions.)

And finally, I’ve been trying to create time in my schedule, so I can analyze over 11,000 helpful comments at this website. Almost all of them include useful data points that could reveal more about the Mandela Effect. This is a massive project, and requires intense focus.

Since late 2015, I’ve mentioned these concerns. For a few months, things seemed to simmer to a manageable level. But then, in the past ten days, a fresh flurry of unpublishable comments moved this decision to the forefront again. I can’t remain undecided, indefinitely.

So, effective this morning, I’ve closed comments at this site. It will take me a couple of days to make changes across this site, reflecting this.

This many seem harsh to regular visitors from the past six years, as well as people who’ve just now discovered the Mandela Effect.  I apologize.

This website will continue to be a resource for information and insights.

In fact, my next big project is to add more links across this site, connecting major threads about specific memories. (Long-time visitors are probably aware that some of the most useful conversations haven’t been linked to one another. Even comments about Nelson Mandela and the Berenstein Bears appear randomly — and without linked connections — in multiple threads on many pages at this site.)

Also, I’d like to add more news (science) updates that could help explain the Mandela Effect, and give more depth to our understanding of it.

In general, I want to make this website more useful and unique.

For now, I want to thank everyone who’s made this website fascinating. (If you’re reading this, that includes you.)

To each of you who’ve shared insights and memories, and to everyone who’s been following our conversations and telling others about the Mandela Effect, thank you.

I am sincerely grateful for each of you, and you are important to me.

Question: Does Accepting the Mandela Effect Increase Slides?

attic lightIn discussions with friends, a question has been raised: When someone accepts the idea that the Mandela Effect is real, does this reduce one’s resistance to it? And, does this result in more frequent slides from one reality to another?

Instead of a subconscious effort not to slide, are we mentally “catching the wave” and riding it to the next, cooler, alternate experience?

I’m interested in whether you feel that — since looking at the Mandela Effect concept, and deciding that it might be real — you’re seeing an increasing number of changes.

I don’t mean “Whoa, when did that change?” moments.  I mean times when you look at something and know it was different yesterday, or in a time since you stumbled onto the Mandela Effect.

I’m not looking for a list of shifting memories.

Mostly, I’m interested in your theories about what’s going on, and if you’re seeing more changes since you considered the Mandela Effect, and decided it’s not only possible, but okay. To use an old phrase, now that you know about the Mandela Effect, are you happy (or at least somewhat content) to “go with the flow”?

Comments with an Agenda?

Since I don’t visit forums very often — and I don’t think I’ve even found time for Facebook in the past year or so — I rely on friends to note social media posts about the Mandela Effect.

rubbishI’m grateful for those friends’ insights, because they’ve put a recent problem into a broader context. I thought the issue was only at this website, but now it seems more widespread.

Here’s what’s going on:

Lately, I’ve seen an increase in odd, shallow comments left at this website. I usually send them to the Trash.

According to a few friends, similar comments are appearing at Reddit and other discussion sites.

Those comments are posted under a variety of usernames and IP numbers. Other than that, they’re remarkably consistent.

  • Most — not all — open with an almost apologetic line like, “This is going to sound crazy, but…”
  • Then, the comment wanders into easily dismissed topics of religion or conspiracies, or both. A few bring UFOs into the mix.
  • Finally, each comment usually includes a link to YouTube, generally to a video that’s supposedly related to the Mandela Effect.  (The few I checked were only loosely Mandela Effect-ish. One mentioned “Mandela Effect” in a single sentence; that was all.)

The odd part is, the phrasing of those comments is consistent. The use of language — words and phrases — follows a specific pattern. Ordinarily, I’d attribute the writing to a single person, even if they’re trying to sound different. (Most people can’t conceal their natural speech patterns in writing, no matter how they try.)

It may be a single person with a specific agenda, hiring several workers at Fiverr or Mr. Turk, or services like them. It’s possible. I’m not sure that it matters.

The tactic isn’t very clever, but — if you’re not familiar with this technique for flooding forums, etc., to discredit a topic — you might take some of those comments seriously. That does matter, if this is an effort to dilute important Mandela Effect comments.

Or, this might be the natural progression of the Diffusion of Innovations curve, related to this topic.

Or, it could be both… or something else, altogether. (For all I know, it’s someone hoping to get lots of YouTube views to earn advertising commissions.)

If you’ve seen an increase in vapid, nonsensical, and extreme comments on this topic: It’s not a fair representation of those serious about the Mandela Effect. The less attention paid to those comments, the better. And please, don’t waste your time on their YouTube efforts.

[UPDATE: Since posting this article, the comments I described have come to an abrupt halt. Not even one claiming to be “different” or “sincere,” which is unusual, after I speak up on this kind of issue. So, I think it’s safe to assume those comments had an agenda. I don’t know (or care) what it was; I’m just relieved they’ve stopped.]

Latest Memories – 11 Apr 2016

At the start of 2016, I asked people to use the Contact form to let me know about alternate memories they didn’t see in articles or on my Memories list and related Comments pages.

Jonny Quest - first season videos

Recently reported memories

  • Jonny Quest or Johnny Quest? As you can see from the DVD set from the first season — illustrated at right — it’s Jonny. No H. This is one of the first spelling alterations we’ve seen that’s not a vowel. (Note: Johnny Test is a different program.)
  • Oxiclean or Oxyclean? It’s Oxiclean in this reality.
  • Several Australians have reported a strong memory of an alternate Australian flag. The issues seem related to the number of stars and relative sizes of them. Several specifically talk about seeing the “new” flag behind the Australian Prime Minister during a speech in mid-late March 2016.
  • Days of Heaven movie: At the big confrontation, did Sam Shepard hold a pitchfork or a gun? (I haven’t seen the film, but people say it’s a gun in this reality.)
  • This may not be a Mandela Effect issue: A few people are reporting that US Mail (USPS) trucks (jeep style) now have steering wheels on the left side of the car, similar to most US automobiles. I only recall seeing the steering wheel on the right side of USPS vehicles, the same as cars in England. Does anyone have insights about a design change?
  • Not Mandela Effect:  “E.T. phone home” was said in the movie, E.T. I’m not sure who started claiming it was only “E.T. home phone,” but that’s just one line in the film; the rest say “…phone home.”
  • Not Mandela Effect, as far as I know: In at least one episode of Fringe, the New York borough of Manhattan is spelled Manhatan. That’s deliberate, to cue viewers that the show is set in an alternate reality.
  • Those reporting a dual memory of the borough as “Manhatten”… that might be Mandela Effect. (It should be “Manhattan.” According to Spellchecker.net, 76% of the misspellings are consistently “Manhatten.” Contrast that with the 63% who misspell the word “misspell.”) I’m not sure whether the focused frequency of a misspelled word indicates Mandela Effect, and if we can claim a certain percentage as a marker.
  • Several people think the added forward-slash (/) is part of spelling at this website, and it’s a Mandela Effect. It’s not. The apparent typo is due to a software glitch I haven’t been able to resolve… and I don’t have time to go through comments and delete all those extra characters.
  • Another simple misspelling: the word is “whoa,” not “woah.” The frequency of this misspelling in recent years raises the question of whether it’s based in the Mandela Effect, but I’m not sure. (It shows up 71% of the time, as a misspelling.) If you’re fairly sure it’s a Mandela Effect issue, let me know.
  • Another confusing spelling topic: Several people recall being taught “suprise” instead of “surprise.” Spellchecker.net says 62% misspell “surprise” without the first R. (That could be a contagion from a typo in a spelling book, or some other teaching-related mistake.) However, that word seems to have a higher-than-average number of variations among misspellings. The number of variations is anomalous.
  • Misquotation or Mandela Effect? It seems as if “Hello, Clarice” doesn’t appear in Silence of the Lambs. It’s “Good evening, Clarice.” (I can’t vouch for this because I’ve never seen the film and never will, on principle. But, enough people have contacted me about the quote, I’m including it in this list.)
  • In the Matrix, when Neo opens his book, does a word appear — probably on the right-side page of the book, opposite the page headed “On Nihilism” — near the top of an otherwise-white page? So far, no one can recall the actual word, but all say it was there when they first saw the movie… and now it’s gone.

If you have new memories to add, use the “New Memories” form at the Contact page.

Visual Cues and the Mandela Effect

Luke faces Darth Vader
Illustration courtesy of JD Hancock

This week, MandelaEffect.com visitor Mike H. shared a couple of video links with me. (I rarely have time for YouTube, even for topics that interest me.)

I’ve posted those videos, below.  Because this is a busy week, I haven’t watched either video, in full, but — skimming the second one — I realized something that’s important. Well, it’s important to me, anyway, as it’s part of how I remember things, and how I clarify those memories.

I’m a visual learner. Things that I see reinforce memories, and they can trigger memories, as well.

To find out more about learning modalities, here are a few helpful links: Learning Modalities, at Education.comModalities, at the State University of New York, CortlandThe Four Modalities of Learning, at Ms. Dillard’s Classroom.

Every day, I receive many emails and comments related to alternate memories (and an alternate past). On average, I recall about 20% of the memories I read in those emails & comments. I think most people agree with some — but not all — alternate memories they read about at this website and others that explore the Mandela Effect.

Sometimes, I’m not sure about a particular memory. It may be a dual memory, but, at other times, it’s something that wasn’t important to me (when I first learned about it), so I don’t want to claim I’m certain of the alternate memory.

For me, one of those ambivalent memories was the Star Wars’ movie line, “Luke, I am your father,” as opposed to “No. I am your father.” (The movie seems to have the latter line, not the former. However, with several different edits of the original Star Wars movies in circulation, those movies aren’t the strongest evidence to support Mandela Effect theories.)

I was fairly certain I recalled the line as “Luke…,” but — though I’m a fan of Star Wars — I can’t claim that one line made enough of an impact for me to be confident of my alternate memory.

Then, I saw the visual in the second video, below.  It triggered vivid and detailed memories of seeing Star Wars for the first time… and the second time, the third, and so on.

Right away, I understood why — in my reality, at the time — that line definitely started with “Luke…”

It’s because, at times of stress and urgency, when a parent wants to impress his (or her) child with an important fact or order, that parent almost always starts the sentence with the child’s name.

Had Darth Vader said “No. I am your father,” I would have thought he was lying, trying to throw Luke off-guard. I’d have expected the lie to be exposed in the sequel to that film.

That’s my kind of logic. But, until I saw Darth Vader facing Luke in the video, below, I wasn’t 100% certain that my original memory was different from what’s current in this reality.

So, I’m sharing these videos in case they’re helpful to others. I’d like not to launch another “Heinz 57 varieties” series of comments on the individual topics, but I’m interested in hearing from people who find visual cues helpful in clarifying alternate memories.

I’d also like to know how you decide whether something is an alternate memory for you. That is, do you look it up, online? Or, do you go back to an old book, movie, or journal? Do you check with friends or family who might have the same memory?

What’s your process when you encounter a memory that doesn’t fit the current reality?

Marker or Memory Trigger?

This week, multiple reports related to Mother Teresa (or Mother Theresa) included additional, seemingly unrelated memories.

Domino Effect
Photo courtesy FreeImages.com

It’s not unusual for people to use one topic to report others, as a matter of convenience for them. However, this week’s reports and comments have been different. People were talking about additional alternate memories highlighted within days of recalling an alternate history for Mother Teresa or her canonization.

Among the most vivid was AL’s report. In close proximity to the Mother Teresa report, AL saw Michael Crawford on TV, when AL has memories connected to Crawford’s earlier death. In addition, a Sky News report seemed an exact repeat of a news story AL had seen about six months ago.

So, I’m interested in whether you’re noticing a dramatic uptick in your own emerging, credible alternate memories in the past week or so. (Meaning: Somehow connected to the announcement of Mother Teresa’s canonization – either the announcement triggered memories, or something released them around mid-March 2016.)

If so, leave a brief comment.

What to include

  • Briefly list those memories. Not extended details, just the memory, headline-style (such as “John Doe still alive but I recall death in 2008”).
  • For each, say whether (for you) a media event (TV, radio, Internet) was related to that discovery.
  • Let us know if you only recently realized you had these memories, or if they’ve been confusing to you for some time, and
  • Whether or not you also have alternate Mother Teresa memories. (If they’re dual memories, let me know that, too.)

Important: This is not intended as a free-for-all listing of alternate memories, similar to the previous Comments Lists. Lists of memories including more than headline-style brevity will not be approved. (As of 5 Apr 2016, over a dozen comments could not be approved, due to lengthy personal information and memories explained in detail. If you have new memories to report, share them via the Contact form, Memories list, or Re: Comments page. That’s the only way I can aggregate them and see which are gaining traction.)

Why this poll?

I’m wondering if some events — such as Mother Teresa’s canonization…

  1. Trigger more awareness of additional, alternate memories that were already there, OR
  2. Mark a collective shift by multiple people into the current reality.

Leave your comments below. Thanks!

(As usual, comments will be open for 45 days from the date of this post. Comments close 2 May 2016.)

Mother Teresa – A Saint Once Again?

Mother Teresa of Calcutta
photo courtesy of India7 Network

Mother Teresa of Calcutta (1910 – 1997) will be canonized as a saint on September 4th, 2016.

From comments and email, it’s clear that many Mandela Effect readers recall Mother Teresa (also remembered as Mother Theresa) being declared a saint prior to 2016.

  • Some recall her being named a saint in the 1990s.
  • Some are sure she was given sainthood while alive.
  • Some specifically reference Pope John Paul II as the pope who approved the canonization.

It’s important to note some landmark recognitions during Mother Teresa’s life and in the years since her death.

  • In 1962, she was given the Philippines-based Ramon Magsaysay Award for International Understanding.
  • In 1969, she was featured in the film, Something Beautiful for God.
  • In 1971, Paul VI awarded her the first Pope John XXIII Peace Prize.
  • In 1979, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
  • In 1980, she received India’s highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna.
  • After her 1997 death, Pope John Paul II waived the usual five-year wait and began the beatification process.
  • In 2002, the Vatican recognized the first of two required miracles leading to Mother Teresa’s canonization.
  • In 2003, she was officially beatified.
  • In 2015, the Vatican recognized the second of the two required miracles.
  • According to the Vatican, her canonization will take place September 4th, 2016.

If you recall a reality in which she was named a saint (canonized) earlier than 2016, I hope you’ll share those memories in comments,* below.  I’m particularly interested in the context of your memories. That is, where you were, which spelling (Teresa or Theresa) you recall, whether you read about her sainthood in a book, heard about it in class, learned about it from a news report or online, and so on.

*On most articles at this site, comments remain open for 45 days.