Mandela Effect Introduction

The Mandela Effect is a term for where a group of people all mis-remember the same detail, event or physicality. It is named after the instance in which a large group of people all shared the same memory that Nelson Mandela died prior to his actual 2013 death, usually some time in the 1980’s. The effect exploded in popularity on the internet when a peculiar example popped up where a majority of people seemed to have recalled the Berenstain Bears books as being spelled as “Berenstein” or some other variation, differing from the actual spelling as presented by evidence.

The effect is somewhat different from a false memory as it effects large groups of people, seemingly without many connections and without the same emotional factors present. It also seems stronger and harder to escape the feeling that it’s simply a mis-remembering of a detail, which is why people are so adamant with claims of their memories. As such, it’s often been hinted at that the Mandela Effect is closely related to cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance can be mental stress or discomfort experienced by an individual who holds beliefs, ideas, or values and is confronted by new information that conflicts with existing beliefs, ideas, or values. Please note the use of “can be” as there is many purists that don’t accept the broader definition and scope of cognitive dissonance applying to memory versus reality.

Many Mandela Effects are usually trivial details about an oddly specific set of categories. These include things such as the how and when of celebrity deaths, misspellings (usually replaced or removed letters), placement of geographical locations, quotations within media, or alternate imagery.

It is also related to misconceptions in general, although, again is differentiated due to the obscure nature and odd feelings resulting from learning the reality. The solutions, explanations and reasons for the misconceptions are also cryptic and often misrepresented or unknown altogether.

The term it fits most with is “confabulation” which is a disturbance of memory which produces fabricated, distorted, or misinterpreted memories about the world, without the explicit or conscious intention to deceive others. People who confabulate in this way produce incorrect memories about the most trivial details (as seen with most Mandela Effects) but range up to more complex fabrications as well. They are generally extremely confident in their recollections and will typically resist any contradictory evidence.

The aim of this site is unique among the current offerings online to attempt to dissect the possible causes and solutions for this perplexing phenomenon with a scientific, rational approach. If you’ve come to read about merging of universes, alternate timelines, and time travel then you are in the wrong place (unless you have evidence of such things!). It is of my opinion that the Mandela Effect is a real thing; however, steeped in the realm of sociology and psychology and not science fiction.

Listing of Mandela Effects explored on the site so far:

More information:

Related psychological and phenomenons (possible explanations/factors):

I dive into each of these on the Common Explanations page.

513 thoughts on “Mandela Effect Introduction

  1. For those who do not believe the Mandela Effect is real. Here’s a question to all the Star Wars fans. What color is C3PO’s legs? Strange question indeed. Well, I am a huge Star Wars fan, and in my universe, he has always been one solid gold color. If you go look at movie clips now, you will see without a doubt he now has a silver leg. I have randomly crossed reference my memory with 7 others who clearly remember he was always 100 gold. I knew my VHS 1995 copies are correct, because I watched them about 5 years ago with my children and he is all golden. I put in my movies this weekend. Guess what HE NOW HAS A SILVER LEG. I even checked my 1980 trading cards. He now has a silver leg. The timeline has changed. But what is more important, is my brother grew up with Star Wars with me. It was part of our life. HE REMEMBERS HIM AS ALWAYS HAVING A SILVER LEG. So I have now realized, that he and I are existing in separate parellel universes. I strongly suggest to people not to dwelve too much on the Mandela Effect because it can cause madness. We have at least two parellel universes occupying the same space, and we may be slipping in between both. From what I have understood, this phenomena will be corrected in the next few years.

    • The thing is that, if HE remembers it as a silver leg then you may have been misremembering it. I think it debunks mandela effect more than affirms it in this scenario. I do believe that C3PO has always been 100% gold but since he remembers differently, it could be the case that we are remembering incorrectly.

  2. Are you serious?!?!?! This is stupidity at its unbeleivable f***** high. A thousand people say that kellogg s had froot loops and one guy says oh!…But its fruit loops. And an entire conspiracy forms. I call bullshit. Did anyone ask Kelloggs? Either we re being guided into a new theory to believe some bologna their gonna tell us next. Now come on. They cover stuff up all the time. Be confident in what you know. Accept the fact that maybe they changed the packaging.

  3. yall act like youre better than everybody cuz you think this is bull but if youre so sure YOURE right, then disprove the mandela effect. there is no definite way to explain this so just chill. the world is fuckin weird. an oompa loompa has been elected as president. an 11 year old told be to suck his balls because i am a girl who was using a character who was a girl in a game. a lot of things dont make sense and until you can disprove this 100% you need to chill.

    • I can explain it. All the instances of the “effect” are such minute differences that it allows for just enough uncertainty that reasonable doubt creeps into your mind. You hear a line from a movie quoted by a friend thats off by just one word, “is” or a”was” and we assume its correct. Then it may be years before we actually see it used in its correct context. By then it has become entrenched in our minds. All along we were just wrong

  4. I’m a Psychology major at UC Merced. I am not here to say that everyone is crazy or wrong. I’m just going to provide a theory. I may be right or I may be wrong.

    Every person’s reality is subjective to their own memories and experiences. The way they remember it and believe it to be suits their needs and shapes who they are. Sometimes companies make their logos or grammar be slightly wrong so that they will be stuck in our mind, over time our minds will try and alter the memory to the correct or logical way it should be. Then when we go back and see the wrong way we think that something has changed it. That’s the psychology of marketing and logos.
    This marketing technique isn’t exclusive to products either. A lot of celebrities will use a unique spelling of their name as to stand out, and our mind does the same auto correction and store to memory.
    Additionally, I’m not saying that anybody is doing this on purpose, but it is very disrespectful and hurtful to keep insisting that a family is misspelling their name and that they used to spell it differently, especially after they have released a statement with the correct spelling. When you keep questioning it, you are not only accusing the family (whose never done anything bad to you) of lying and you are harming their identities, the heritage, and their livelihoods. What did they do to you? They shared cherished stories of a family of bears that brought you joy.
    As for pop culture, there are often various tracks, performances, and parodies of songs and quotes. People sometimes hear different words, but there are numerous influences that affect how we perceive and relate to what we experience that different people will store it in their memories different. Even different cultures. One may remember a rocket launcher as a weapon and another could remember it as a magical wand that demons come out of.
    Famous quotes from movies – the “Luke” from Star Wars is added in when it’s retold or used by kids in roleplay so others will know what movie you’re quoting. Being such a big reveal and coming from the Hero and Villain, people are going to want to use it to quote. And if you quote the original, you’re just not going to look as cool. The title of Sex and the City is with the and because that’s the name of Carrie’s article that she writes about the various topics between men and women living in New York City. If it were Sex in the City, the articles would be about having sex in New York City, Yes, there’s a lot of Sex in the show, but not in her writing.
    Words and Colors – Many confusions about the spelling of words or the names of colors are easy to clear up with a little research. By looking up the history of the color name or origins of words. Chartreuse was named after a yellowish green drink. Cerise is a pinkish purple color which might be a possibility for the mix up. The word dilemma comes from the Greek word lemma. The root of the word definitely is finite. Any other spelling is illogical. If something looks off to you, don’t just say its wrong and look for others to agree with you. Educate yourself instead, it is healthier. Besides, a lot of the American English we use today is going to look wrong. It has been altered and added to from many different other languages and at many different times. Not to mention that if any new words become popular enough it can be added easily.
    Celebrity Deaths – for almost twenty years there have been fake news sites and for even longer there have been fake news publication. I remember reading about ten years ago that Betty White had passed away and tears just started pouring from my eyes. I immediately started researching it but could find no other mention of it. After researching the site, I noticed there disclaimer that all articles are for entertainment purposes and not based in fact. If I had not looked it up I might of thought she came back to life cause of this effect too. And I probably would’ve recall a tribute for her too as some TV stations pay honor to there iconic actors, even the live ones, just to honor just throw out celebrity honors to get you to click over. A certain site sells them information about best what your interest are and they use that to see which celebrities may have a bigger impact on you.
    Geology – It wasn’t until very very recently that the most accurate mapping of earth was released. Before that various map of earth were created based on the purpose of the map or often just a glossing over of old maps. If you compare a lot of different maps from the past you will notice small differences. Also, if your trying to recall a map from memory there is no way any person will get it 100% accurate. However, since you are trying to recall it any part you don’t remember will be “created” by your mind and your mind will trick you into believing it was always that way.
    The reason that all this may seem like it’s part of a huge conspiracy is:

    1. Mandela Effect is a popular theory right now and once you hear about it, then uncommon spellings, and fake news will be more noticeable and as said before, the human brain wants to correct stuff or at least give a logical reason why it’s wrong so it will tell you “Hey this Mandela Effect will be a good reason why its not logical.” Then it will fight tooth and nail to keep that as the reason.

    2. Also, with so many opposing views, a controversial election, and all those tweets, then it’s easy to believe that something’s going on.

    3. The hadron collider – all that protesting and the mystery of the unknown. In addition to the timelines matching up.

    4. A lot of movies and TV shows have come out recently fueling into this topic.

    The companies, celebrities, shows and so on are not going to go online and correct anything because they are loving all this attention and free advertising.
    I am also not saying that this effect is bad memories or your brains not working right. This is not due to confabulation or mass memory loss. It’s because of what the media and marketing has done using psychology and not knowing the long term that this is now an issue. The fact that you are noticing these discrepancies shows that your brain is working the way it should be.
    I’m also not saying that parallel universes don’t exist or say that anyone is lying or didn’t experience something. I don’t know you and I wasn’t there to know anything about your past. If you want to believe that we are in the matrix, that’s awesome! Because even if it was just another conspiracy theory, you got to experience what it might be like to live in one.

    • Thank you! That’s exactly what i think about the ME, too, and i was thinking about how to explain it right since days on end.
      But english is not my language, so it seemed quite hard to find the right words and expressions.
      You explained it perfectly!
      Like the Queen song, we are the champions… “of the world” seems to be missing anyway at the end of the song, it brakes the haromy purposely to give a special character to it. It’s absolutely normal that our brain adds the “missing” sentence. In concerts, Freddie Mercury (or Freddy? Not sure) soften added it too…
      Stein ist written with E, so if you don’t check every single letter, your brain writes BerenstEin instead of BerenstAin, because that would actually fit… etc, etc…
      Thanks for explaining it so well!

    • On the topic of star wars… I always remembered it as being “Luke, I am you father”. It wasn’t something that kids made up when roleplaying. Its what he said…. I even found this electronic 2005 Lucasfilm hallmark ornament in my brothers collection that clearly says “luke, I am your father”.

      https://youtu.be/ljcnOwFgJu8

      • There is a very logical reason for this ornament, and other things in pop culture to have the wrong saying on it.

        Imagine looking at that Darth Vader Ornament.

        Imagine seeing Chris Farley in Tommy Boy.

        Now, imagine them saying “No, I am your father” (which is the actual quote in the movie)

        How much sense would that make? No, I am your father. Who’s father? It lacks context. Thus, the word No was changed to Luke in these instances to give context to the quote. Context that was there in the movie, thus the name wasn’t needed (we SEE Vader talking to Luke)

        Those that “remember” Luke I am your father don’t actually remember it. They see the misquote in popular culture, and then reason that it MUST be this way in the movie.

  5. The M.E. is happening. The bottom of the rabbit hole truth is something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. It is madness. I can assure you dilemna is not spelled dilemma. Don’t dig, you will regret it. I do.

  6. I ask the debunker’s these questions, have you reviewed Wikipedia Picture Superiority effect, Alzheimer’s research and the Brands Style Guide, If you remove the “spellings” from the equation and ask no leading questions, that would be a study worth doing in this regard. I am 57 and I propose we were the first to be introduced to hard core advertising, we even liked them at the time and in my case I can remember my address and phone number from age 10-16. Another question have any of the debunker’s actually talked to Quantum theory experts, on both sides? I believe you are right about our brains trying to make sense of these changes, for instance I remember Oscar Meyer changing to Mayer and thought it was corp reorganization based on money but they didn’t want to change the brand that much so as not to loose their customers, imagine my surprise to find out that Never happened, yes we research these things.

    I also have one more comment/suggestion for those in your field, why did CERN produce the CERN 2014 Happy video?? a) to mock the people that noticed this and blamed CERN or b) Hubris, I did my homework and a chemist sued them to stop and lost and many others in scientific fields said they were making science research a joke and degrading the fields of research. Also they said they were looking for dark matter and found it and why is China building an even bigger LHC? CERN is a $4B research project? What is there to gain? Again you might want to research this a little more. Try reading about Nikola Tesla and his research, there are major clues there.

  7. I’ve been writing short stories since I was 10 and never once thought that dilemma was spelled or pronounced “dilemna.” I’m fairly certain that the Mandela effect did not “exist” before the internet. Now, we can have full forum circle jerks of people who’d made an easy mistake mishearing or misreading something and chocking it up to parallel universes colliding.

  8. It’s real. I know what I know and I’m not having memory problems. I’m not alone and all of us can’t be crazy. I can’t explain it, but I remember certain things vividly and now the aren’t that way.

  9. I always remember C3po with 2 gold legs, Sex in the City , Tom Cruise wore glasses during his dance in Risky Business and a white shirt. Now shirt is pink and no glasses. I have a good memory but this crap messes with you.

  10. I remember a scene from “How to Train Your Dragon.” I don’t really remember it, though. It’s kind of blurry… Hiccup training Toothless, I think. When I re-watched How to Train Your Dragon, the scene wasn’t there. Can you explain this?

  11. I made some videos for youtube which were all removed as was my entire channel which began in 2011 and had 314 videos with well over 29.000 subscribers. One video in particular I made, which had over 4 million views before it was removed, was titled: “PROOF: MANDELA EFFECT IS ACTUALLY CERN QUANTUM EFFECT”. In fact, if you search that title, or my youtube channel name “truth4wtc7”, you can still find copies of that video, though some are in parts, have been shorten, or slightly edited. Here is a copy of the actual text that I wrote for the description of the video back when I published it on June 29th, 2016 (which I stumbled onto here: http://esterlund.com/blog/proof-mandela-effect-is-actually-cern-quantum-effect-youtube/):

    Published on Jun 29, 2016

    In this, my 4th video on The Mandela Phenomenon, I combine the best of the best of what I have been able to find to date, to vent some of the anger and frustration victims (and YES, “victims” is the correct word to describe what folks experiencing the effect indeed are), are going through while at the same time attempt to point beyond any doubt, where the blame belongs for this atrocity. It boggles my mind how so many people who apparently are not experiencing the changes, can sit back and call the folks who are experiencing the changes Bat Shit Crazy! The way I see it there are basically 4 camps that exist: CAMP A: People who are experiencing “The Mandela Effect” and looking for answers. CAMP B: People who are either not sure if they are experiencing “The Mandela Effect”, but just don’t want to know if they actually are experiencing “The Mandela Effect”, because of a deep seated fear of it and/or they fear of being ridiculed or have chosen to SECOND GUESS THEIR OWN MEMORIES as a method of self-preservation. I think this is what they call the FIGHT or FLIGHT syndrome and this group makes the choice to FLEE from the situation, rather then to stay and FIGHT, or ACCEPT it as being a real phenomenon. CAMP C: People who honestly have NO CHANGES to their memories. They are NOT experiencing ANY symptoms of “The Effect”. Sometimes I wonder if the folks in CAMP C are somehow the LUCKEY ONES! And finally, we have CAMP D: The people who know what has happened. These would be the folks “IN THE KNOW”, or people who actually work for, finance, or have something to do with CERN. I think this video will show the cat is pretty much out of the bag when it comes to WHO is behind this atrocity. Why do I use the word atrocity to describe the phenomenon? Because IMHO there is a definite EVIL twist to what has happened,… is happening…. (YES, it is still going on!!!) I find this whole thing to be with out a doubt a PREPOSTEROUS ABOMINATION!!! People have said things to me like; “What difference does it make?” “Why should you care when there is nothing you can do about it?” If that were not bad enough, I have had people tell me that I am DELUSINAL,… or that I have completely gone insane and need to seek help,… and MUCH, MUCH, worse things have been said,… as I’m sure anyone who has been victimized by “The Effect” reading this can attest to. I am OUTRAGED by this. I feel completely helpless and absolutely VICTIMIZED by this. NOW is the time for the people who are the actual VICTIMS of this “experiment gone bad” to fight back! But how?!? Can my previous reality be restored? Can what ever has been TURNED ON be TURNED OFF? Can Humpty Dumpty be put back together again? Will myself and millions of others be able to simply accept this NEW REALITY and go one with our lives like it never happened? I can not speak for the millions effected, but for myself, the answer to those questions if NO! So what can we do? Well for starters, we are already doing it… We can MAKE PEOPLE AWARE!!! I do it by making videos such as this one, and I also typed up a “MANDELA AWARENESS QUIZ”, a simple 3-page question and information packet that I hand out to people I know. If you go about it the right way you can actually get people to realize what has happened without totally freaking them out in the process. Another thing I do is mention to people everywhere I go, I will ask people out in public if they ever heard of The Mandela Effect, and then when they say “NO” (which is just about 99.9% of the people I’ve asked the question have so stated), I will then ask them if they have Internet capability, (to which about 90% say “YES, THEY DO”,… I will ask them to do me a favor and to type “MANDELA EFFECT” into the YouTube search engine and promise me they will watch 5 videos on the subject when they go home. lol! It might make me look crazy to many of COMPLETE STRANGERS I walk up to out in public, but believe it or not, the vast majority thus far have been very nice and respectful toward me when I do this! The corporate/government controlled/sponsored “main stream” media is NOT doing their job, (so what else is new), therefore it is up to you and I to do it for them. The FIRST step to getting answers, and bringing the perpetrators of this PREPOSTEROUS ABOMINATION to pay for their crimes id to wake as many people up as possible about it!

    I would like to give credit where credit is due. I admit, I do in fact use portions of other peoples work when making my own videos, however I do so with absence of malice. I do so for the benefit of the public and by way of the FAIR USE DOCTRIN. Please check out their work because it’s all good! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Xeu2… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HNs0c… Also please keep in mind that NONE of my videos are monetized and NEVER will be. Thank you and May God Bless!

    I now have absolute proof that the phenomenon is real. Anyone who wishes to debate me, or simply discuss “The Mandela Effect”, is invited to do so.

  12. Most people I know that believe in the Mandela effect are sufferibg from Bi-Polar,unmedicated and in manic episodes.Dilemma was always Dilemma,always been 50 states and Bananas have been spelled the same way forever,they used Urban Dictionary as their “proof”,proving,psychologists,scientists right,you cannot argue with people that are in their made up world ,they have no real research to fall back on,just made up bullshit from a joke shit like like UD..They refuse to listen to anyone that doesn’t agree with their irrational thinking,false memories.

  13. I will probably make a video on this. Are there any elements of this website that are copyrighted?

  14. These changes mentioned are all superficial, but they’re also nothing compared to recent ones. While you may not care, there are literally thousands of changes to the King James Bible, I can’t understand why people see all that technology is capable of now, and not take these changes seriously. They’re changing matter on a molecular level. Study what’s going on with robotics companies, CERN and quantum computers. lI have residual proof of Proctor & Gamble (where my dad was a chemical engineer) with an o and not an e in Proctor and Chic-Fil-A, now Chick-Fil-A. I also have residual proof of Bible changes. And no, I’m not going to post them as people need to thoroughly research this topic for themselves, and not so easily dismiss it. Additionally, if I show you those residuals, you’ll find some way to say they’re mistakes…that is, until it deeply affects you. I personally don’t believe we’re in a parallel universe, but there’s no doubt they’re changing this one. That said, Elon Musk, Neil DeGrasse Tyson and others propose that we’re in a simulation. Musk is absolutely convinced. If that’s the case, anything is possible. Anyway, good luck “debunking” as our world becomes literally unrecognizable. You can’t debunk anything, as that’s not how it works. Conversely, one can prove residuals when they find them. Peace out.

  15. I think there is a simple explanation to this Mandela Effect and it is that north Americans suck at history, I mean most of them think they won WW2 (probably because of the countless amount of movies that portray that) when in fact it’s the Soviet Union that won the war. All the other ME examples used reference cartoons they watched when they were kids and it is safe to assume your memory is not 100% accurate. So stop freaking out

  16. When I was in Japan, in 1998, Neil Armstrong died. It was in all the papers, including the English ones at the library and on TV. When I came back to the states in 1999, he was alive again and on the Tonight Show. He has since died again.
    I believe.

  17. I think the Mandela effect is real, but the crazies jumped on the band wagon and started relating everything that seems a little off as the effect. So now it is buried under a mountain of confabulation. For me, the irrefutable items are as follows (none of which would fall under the category of false or faulty memory):

    1. Volkswagen logo
    My first car was a 1968 Volkswagen Beetle. Those vehicles did not have a VW medallion, but the manual etc. did and I looked at it all the time. My uncle was a huge VW fan, so I cannot count how many VWs I’ve washed and waxed over the years. I remember the VW logo as not having the v separated on top. This doesn’t fall under false memory for two reasons:
    i) When you wax the medallion on a car the wax gets into all the nooks and crannies. You have to point off a corner of your buffing cloth and clean out the dry wax.You have to not only look at the logo but polish every part of it when you buff out the wax. If there was a separator between the v and the W, then I would have had to have buffed out the dried wax in that indentation. ii) I was always perplexed why the logo only have a W in it. I figured the logo was really two capital Vs (VV). The left most V stood for Volks and the right most V completed the entire letter as a W. I spend countless minutes staring at the logo and trying to figure it out. I never even thought that the crossover of the two Vs made a v on top until I saw the new logo (within the last year or two). When I saw the new logo it made perfect sense to me. I thought the new logo was an update of the old logo, until I found out about the Mandela effect and was surprised to see the separated logo existed since the inception of VW.

    2. The torch of the Statue of Liberty did not become structurally unsound and closed until some time in the early 1970s. Not only do I remember seeing pictures of relatives on the torch, I remember going up the thin spiral staircase that led to the torch before my brother got tired and we turned back. I also remember being disappointed when I heard the news in the 1970s that the torch was closed. I wasn’t even alive in 1916, which everyone is now saying was the year that the torch was closed.

    I also remember the Bible verse being “The lion will lie with the lamb.” I’ve read the Bible from cover to cover. Even so, it’s a large book and I could be wrong What I want explained is why even priests, when asked, are saying they remember the verse reading as “Lion.”

    Confabulation happens when you see something one way and over time, when you don’t get to be around it, you begin to remember it another way. Confabulation, unless pathological (and I doubt that all the people experiencing this effect is pathological) does not apply to tangible things that you touch and see every day. With so many things being updated and modernized, most people experience the Mandela effect and don’t even know it, they just assume that what they remembered was replaced with a more modern version of something. It is only when they learn that the modern version is, and always was, the original that they realize something weird is happening.

    I know memories aren’t reliable. However, they are not as unreliable as the egg heads pushing the confabulation explanation would have you believe. We’ve accepted quantum uncertainty as bonifide science, so why wouldn’t we believe quantum uncertainty when it is reported on a mass scale?

  18. I have only recently become aware of the ME. I have watched several videos and cross-checked many verses in several King James version Bibles. I have also checked out the logos of companies like VW, Coke Zero, Jiffy Peanut butter, Disney and many of the movie lines, among other things. Something weird is definitely going on. There are many things that I am unsure of, but some of these I am 100% sure have changed.

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