Tuesday, 2 March 2010

The only scary thing is how this stuff gets published

On 15 February, The Sun ran this story as it continues to try to prove ghosts and aliens exist:

This picture was apparently taken at Gwrych Castle in North Wales. The Sun says:

And the shadowy girl appears to be on the first floor, in what used to be a magnificent banquet hall. The floor in that room crumbled away years ago, meaning there is nothing for a person to stand on.

But if the floor crumbled away 'years ago' how come this picture from October 2007, posted during a discussion on the photo at the Ghost Theory website, shows the same window and - shock! - a floor.

As does this video on YouTube.

So who gave this story to the Sun? 'Company boss' Kevin Horkin. Ghost Theory found he runs a 'Psychic Management Agency' called Parallel Management and is hoping to buy Gwrych Castle to set up a Psychic School of Excellence there.

His website says one of his areas of expertise is public relations. And the gullible Sun is only too happy to give him some free publicity.

A week later, the Sun was at it again, and the Mail ran this one too:

The Mail published this obvious fake under the headline:

Err, no?

But they played it absolutely straight:

The ghostly image of a young boy was captured on camera as builders demolished an old school building.

John Fores, 47, insists the spectral figure was not present when he took the picture of the part-demolished brick building.

But when he looked back at the images he spotted the boy, aged around eight with short hair and wearing a dark top, standing on the right of the picture looking into the camera.

Both papers even included the same quote from a so-called expert:

Rob Taylor, of the Hull Paranormal Ghost Society, said: 'I have never seen anything as clear and as distinctive as the boy in the picture.'

The Mail adds:

The image of the young boy is exceptionally clear, but the builder insists he has not altered the picture in any way.

But 'the builder' isn't telling the truth and the Mail have shown themselves to be just as gullible/stupid as the Sun. Why?

Because there's an iPhone app called Ghost Capture that allows users to put that very same 'ghost' boy image on any photo.

As Robert Popper showed the other day, some papers really are willing to believe and publish any old rubbish without doing any actual fact-checking.

(Hat tips to Old_Punk at the Mailwatch Forum and Ghost Theory)


  1. Is "Screamy Window" supposed to be a pun? Must be (it is the Sun, after all) but I'm sure I'm being incredibly thick, because I've just repeated it to myself 8,000 times and I still don't get it.

  2. It IS a pun, on "Steamy Window" by Tina Turner. ie. a song nobody's heard of by an artist who's all but vanished.

    The Sun: redefining desperation.

  3. The "ghost" in the Sun photo bares a scary resemblence to Emma Watson.

  4. Ah, thank you for that, Interference. I have never heard of the song...


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