Today on the Internet, there are thousands of hours of camera and video footage claiming to be of ghosts caught on tape. It is all too easy to get caught up believing most of them are real. For the true enthusiast or ghost hunter, it is time to use a more discerning eye and recognize that seeing does not always equal believability!
Ghosts Caught on Tape -Technological Advancements
During the early Spiritualist Movement in Europe and the United States, it was all too easy to fake a ghost. The use of everything from cheesecloth stiffened with starch and accomplices placed strategically behind curtains were two of the many ways people were tricked into believing they had seen an actual spirit.
Enter the present day, where the old tricks meet modern technology in the form of video cameras, photo-editing programs and even voice altering software. The same shams exist, but are more cleverly disguised by modern methods.
Ways to Recognize Tricks of the Eye
It is all the easier for both the amateur and the professional to fool the eye - specifically your eyes - with modern film and recording techniques. Anyone can do it. Moreover, it appears sometimes that everyone is doing it.
Here are some things to keep in mind when watching video footage of purported ghosts caught on tape:
- Approach every piece of footage with skepticism; if a logical explanation occurs to you immediately when you first watch the phenomenon, consider it as a possibility.
- Consider the accompanying explanation to the footage. The more facts (including date, time and weather conditions) and details recorded regarding the appearance, the more believable the report.
- Does the footage allow for a close up view of particular film frames? Does the accompanying explanation state if anything has been done to manipulate or clear up the footage, or does it offer any technological suppositions for abnormalities in the film? If it does, it means the people experiencing and recording the event have tried to be as honest and as factual as they know how to be about the occurrence. What is left in their mind is something you may want to look at and consider.
- Beware of excessive graininess of the footage, sound and video out of sync, video seeming to jump at a key moment, extremely low or odd lighting, and whether there is excessive activity such as talking, background noise, etc. These suggest:
- A deliberate use of a low quality film or camera device
- An unprofessional attempt to distract you from what is going on
- Possible footage manipulation during an editing attempt on the film, picture or recording
- Beware of matrixing. This is where you accept someone else's explanation for what you cannot initially see and hear. It is all too easy to "see" a ghostly figure, an arm and even a movement after someone has pointed it out to you.
Your brain grasps for a ready explanation as a way of filling in the blanks for what you are not sure of conceptually. This is a frequent problem with EVPs - Electronic Voice Phenomenon - as well as with video and film footage. Keep in mind if you do not see it on a first or second look, perhaps there is really nothing there to see.
Is There Any Believable Film Footage of Ghosts?
There has been footage obtained both past and present, that is intriguing and defies logical explanation:
- The Ghost of Greencastle - There is a video of this story that is available on many sites across the web. The photos are impressive, and this site shows them off well. The figure is clear; the pictures have been tested and anomalies have been ruled out.
- A Clip Show of Alleged Ghosts Caught on Camera and Video - This montage includes the pictures of the Ghost of Greencastle (above) but also some other famous video clips and photos. The quality is good and not accompanied by scary music or dialogue. It gives you time to look at the photos or film stills.
In conclusion, yes, there have been ghosts caught on tape ever since the invention of the camera and film equipment; just not quite as often as pranksters on YouTube today would have you believe. Keep this in mind as you explore the tales and supposed evidence of ghosts and hauntings.