The following are Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) at this website. The following brief answers – written by Fiona Broome – may help new visitors understand what this website is… and isn’t.
1. What is the Mandela Effect?
It refers to apparently real memories that don’t match the documented history in this reality. These are personal memories. (In other words, this is not a conspiracy website.)
2. What causes the Mandela Effect?
That’s a complex question. I don’t think there’s a one-size-fits-all answer.
If you think you’ve experienced the Mandela Effect, I encourage you to watch this video.
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/fMZ1xo95fyk
Then, after you’ve ruled out normal explanations – like human error and bad reporting – you may enjoy some of the theories mentioned at this website.
Of course, there are other theories. In my opinion, some are better than others.
3. Why are some comments out of order?
This site was built on WordPress. Sometimes, the software lost track of which reply belonged with what comment. More often, people didn’t hit “reply,” but just posted a new comment. (That’s why those were added at the end of the list on that page.)
4. Why don’t you use a forum or a message board?
This was never intended as a social site, though – for a while – it may have looked like one. My goal was to present fresh ideas, insights, and news related to Mandela Effect topics.
Commercial forums are better designed for focused threads, casual conversations, and social-style comments. I don’t – and never have – commented at Reddit, or any other Mandela Effect forum.
5. Why can’t I add a comment?
Around the middle of April 2016, I closed the site to comments, except for the very newest articles. And, even then, comments were open briefly.
Reasons included my own time constraints (since I manually approved all comments) and a dramatic increase in comments by trolls… and some of them were very clever. They sounded sincere, up to a point.
6. What are “markers”?
That’s a term from our early, whimsical, “what if…?” discussions in 2009 – 2010. We used that term broadly. Some people believe markers are related to a reality shift. Other than that, we’re not sure. Some suggested markers include red/blue changes, and the letters A & E.
Speculating in a “what if?” context, those markers could indicate access points or portals to other realities. They could be coded messages. Or, they could be just coincidental, and kind of fun… if you don’t take them too seriously.
7. Why don’t you post more articles?
For me, this site began as a hobby. During the first few years, this was a fun, speculative website for fans of sci-fi and quantum theories. Our discussions weren’t entirely serious. (That’s important.)
If you read those early comments, remember that many were flippant.
Then, the Berenstein/Berenstain Bears topic went viral, and everything changed. This website gained more attention and credibility.
I was delighted when people were having fun with this. But I was not thrilled when people made unhappy (and, in my opinion, incorrect) connections with conspiracy theories.
Others insisted the Mandela Effect is entirely “false memories.” (I disagree, though – obviously – misunderstandings, bad reporting, and memory glitches can be a factor.)
I’m astonished (and often please) by how many related forums and websites are taking Mandela Effect concepts in new, exciting directions. Some are serious science; others are just fun.
In general, I’m pleased (and, admittedly, a little proud) to have been part of the early conversations. But, for now, I’m focusing on projects that make better use of my unique research skills.
8. Do you think this is a conspiracy?
No, I don’t think the Mandela Effect is a conspiracy, though – starting around 2015 (or perhaps earlier) – I worried that the topic was being manipulated for social and political gain.
That’s when I asked visitors not to raise the spectre of conspiracies.
Alas, inflammatory comments continued. Eventually, I closed comments at this site. I am not a conspiracy theory expert or enthusiast.
Are websites and social media being used to manipulate opinions? Absolutely.
Will I participate in that? No. To me, it’s abhorrent.
This website was supposed to be fun and speculative, and spark conversations among sci-fi geeks like me.
The memories are real. Our conversations are real. The phenomenon is real.
The answers…? I have no idea. Some are more credible – and more fun – than others, but there’s no single explanation. And personally, I reject any assertion that “it’s all a conspiracy.” (However, I love the sarcasm of the related X-Files episode.)
9. Are you sure of your own memories?
Of course not. My memory is at least as fallible as everyone else’s.
And yes, I’m still looking for a reasonable explanation about the 20th century Nelson Mandela funeral I recall, and why so many details in my memories seem to match others’. (No, I’m not mixing it up with Stephen Biko’s funeral in 1977. That was a different era and I wouldn’t have seen it.)
Whether those explanations are credible is another matter, and in the eye of the beholder.
10. Can you help me with my memories? I don’t know what to do.
I’m sorry, but no. My video (above) is my best advice. If you’re deeply troubled by your memories – or doubts about them – I recommend talking with a memory professional, a mental health professional, or someone sympathetic in the faith community. They can probably point you to more specific and useful resources than I can.
Then again, you might talk – in real life – with any innovative and well-respected quantum scientists or professors near your home. They may offer interesting answers that could lead you to a new field of study.
I want this site – and the Mandela Effect topic – to be a springboard for a better understanding of memories, as well as an intriguing introduction to quantum studies and where they may lead us in the future.
11. When will you publish books about the Mandela Effect?
For years, readers have complained that the amount of information on this website is too massive to read, even at a desktop computer. They’ve asked when I’d publish a book.
And, for years, I’ve struggled to find time to maintain this website. Also publishing books…? That seemed overwhelming.
But, late in 2019, topic popularity – and my reluctance to accept advertising on this site – and hosting issues, nearly led me to remove the site altogether.
After consulting with people with more experience in issues like this, I’ve decided that, yes, it’s time to publish books. At first, they will be released in Kindle, so they’re free for people to read in Kindle Unlimited, and through public libraries that provide digital books to patrons.
The first will include the most popular (and most bandwidth-consuming) parts of this website. Then, I’ll do the same with my articles, and add updates as those books are published. After that, I’ll complete my work-in-progress: a behind-the-scenes look at how the Mandela Effect evolved from a lighthearted Dragon Con conversation to a popular trend.
12. Can I copy your articles and post them on my website?
Not yet. Once all the books are published – hopefully by the end of 2019 – I plan to release my own articles (but not related comments) under a Creative Commons license, Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND). Until the articles have been edited, and I announce which articles are available under that license, please do not copy anything from this website.