Why I (Should?) Rarely Talk About the Mandela Effect



This afternoon, checking to see how my latest videos look on YouTube, I stumbled onto…

Well, here’s what I said at my Facebook Page:

On one hand, I’m flattered that my recent audiobook recordings so quickly attracted attention. (Thank you, MoneyBags73!)

Really, I thought it was kind of meta/hilarious that someone posted a video… about me posting videos.

However, I probably shouldn’t have read the comments at that gentleman’s YouTube video page. They were harsh reminders of why, several years ago, I stepped back from the Mandela Effect topic.

I’m sitting here, shaking my head and muttering, “Trolls, and those who repeat their nonsense, as if it’s true…” * sigh *

In case there’s any doubt:

1) Yes, I did start the original Mandela Effect website. (In my book/recording, I reference the topic’s quirky, collaborative start, and mentioned Shadowe in the book’s dedication.)

2) Yes, I do understand the scope of the Mandela Effect; I just don’t see the point in trying to prove it. Or even that the Mandela Effect is real.

3) No, my surname was never Broon, Broone, Broom, or Bloom. And the “witch” label actually evolved when trolls first described me as a “b—-,” and several conservative (lower-case C) critics preferred to use a euphemism instead. (I never thought they were serious about me being an actual witch… but maybe they were?)

However, I’m okay with people criticizing my voice* or my recordings. Mostly, I just wanted to put the contents of my latest book in a free – not paid – version of an audiobook. So there it is.

Okay, feeling really annoyed, that’s what I’d initially posted on Facebook.

Here’s what else I’d like to say: I don’t regret publishing the book. Or even putting the audiobook online, and making everything as free as possible. (The Kindle book is free in Kindle Unlimited, too.)

After all, I think it’s important for people to know the facts about the Mandela Effect, including

  • how the topic started,
  • some of its quirkier aspects and intriguing theories (like Mr. Stain’s cryptic comments, referenced in the audiobook/podcast)
  • and why the original website isn’t online now.

But now, seeing what’s said about me and my work, in the first 24 hours since I became far more vocal (literally) about the Mandela Effect… yikes.

Oh, the Mandela Effect site was tremendous fun for the first year or two or three.

But once the trolls showed up… the fun:exhaustion ratio wasn’t good, and it seems as if that hasn’t improved.

I’m rethinking how to deal with this, while ensuring the visibility of the astonishingly deep insights shared in our early conversations.

Many of those observations and theories haven’t been fully explored. In the future, they may lead to important answers.

To me, it feels almost immoral to let trolls – and those who see the Mandela Effect as something to exploit – control the focus, and how the topic is perceived.

I may regret this, but I think I’m going to speak up a bit more, in case it helps. Clarify points where people are being misled. Highlight the most original theories and  curious, quirky “rabbit holes” of our original conversations.

Well… maybe. I’ll need to see if that’s worth my time. If it’d be just another blog post or YouTube video (or two or three) that get lost in the algorithms, I may give this a pass.

Meanwhile, most reliable media resources give me appropriate credit for my work, establishing the Mandela Effect.

Long-time friends and fans know my role in that, as well.

I’m not sure if that’s good enough for current and future researchers to find the earliest Mandela Effect materials. But maybe it has to be?

* Should I have chosen an AI voice instead?

No, I’m not serious. LOL. Sites like ElevenLabs are producing some pretty good AI voices, but – to me – it seems important for people to hear the tone in my voice, in case that better conveys my sentiments. How flippant I am, and also what a science geek I am. The whimsical ideas that intrigue me, the cultural notes I reference, and how I say “heck” and “darn” instead of anything stronger. And so on. How all of that defines who I am. After all, text can be so vapid.

14 thoughts on “Why I (Should?) Rarely Talk About the Mandela Effect”

  1. Those sound like pseudoskeptics who don’t believe in the whole phenomenon. You have to find a place to talk about the Mandela Effect that doesn’t allow those types to post. It can be difficult, though, because too many people want to be all Freedom Freedom Freedom!!!

    1. Thanks, Mark! You are an absolute gem.

      I rewrote that post about a dozen times, as I did my best to calm down. And, at this point, I’m feeling better. Your comment helped tremendously, of course.

      You’re right about the pseudoskeptics, and about the challenges of finding a safe space for sincere conversations.

      All of this will sort itself, I’m sure. I’d just like it to happen sooner rather than later. (Because: patience of a gnat. lol )

  2. I am a paranormal expert who was host of Indias first paranormal reality show and I am unhappy people discredit the Mandela Effect as a psychological or mental health problem of memory.
    I believe we are in an alternative timeline. Leading scientists say we are most likely in a simulation and I confirm it. Our mind creates reality, we manifest situations and are in a dreamworld much like Inception or Matrix movies. I have made new people appear created by my third eye wearing, saying, and doing what I projected . Kindly shed some light on the subject of alternative reality shifts in timeline explanation. What was your original theory on Mandela Effect? I remember the original timeline as different. Were those false memories placed in us by the Matrix? Or are we in a false timeline? I am hearing a person speaking just like on radio giving me accurate predictions and insights constantly after learning we are in a simulation and are being connected with our spaceship in Ascension as we are not on earth, it is a simulation.

    1. Hello, Swati, and thanks for your comments.

      To answer your question, about my original theory: At first, I thought the only Mandela Effect was the curious coincidence of others recalling what they’d believed was Nelson Mandela’s funeral, but in the 1980s or 1990s.

      At that point, I expected to find out that I’d seen a fictional dramatization related to some sci-fi story.

      Once more stories and alternate memories started flooding in, I started leaning in the direction of parallel realities. That fits with some of my ghost research, and what other, similar investigators have encountered, but aren’t always willing to speak about. Not in public, anyway.

      Basically, at many “haunted” sites, I see – in my mind’s eye – a very vibrant person, and sometimes a full scene, but clearly from the past. Then, fact-checking what I “saw,” I invariably discover that my experience echoes an actual, documented past.

      I’m still not sure how to explain this, and believe that we may not have answers for some time yet. I firmly believe that the truth is in quantum studies. However, from my work experience at M.I.T., I also know that some advances in physics aren’t released to the public, even decades after their discoveries.

      So, I talk about parallel realities, similar to the old TV series, “Sliders.” I also reference the holodecks in “Star Trek” episodes. And, of course, the created realities in the original “Star Trek” series pilot, by Gene Rodenberry.

      All of this is vague speculation on my part, and certainly not cohesive at this point.

      I wish I could be more helpful, but that’s the best I can offer at this point.

    2. Hello Swati. I read your reply and I concur with you that there are many parallel timelines.
      Some people can rather simply “travel” from one to the other. I was once called a “reality surfer”, which is pretty much the way it is and was for me.

      One problem I have had is that sometimes I made a reference to what had happened ‘in another timeline’ (a close one to this reality) and people would say “What are you talking about, this did not happen at all!”? Very confusing, some realities are very, very close to this one.

      It is not even so difficult to have a proof that we live in a simulation. What matters more is the “why” of it I think. We can have that proof, but it will almost always remain a “subjective proof”, which suffizes for me. I don’t have a need (anymore) to provide proof for anyone.

      We are often targeted because we try to come closer to the Truth (or at least, truth). That’s getting harder and harder in today’s world.

      I suppose you are familiar with the term “doing a Mr Smith” on someone? I have been on the “receiving end” countless times (and there’s a good “personal proof”, for myself at least, that we do live in a simulation – or more than one at a time really). It has been really amazing.

      My personal opinion is that the one person that came “closest” to what’s really going on, in this reality of ours nowadays, is P K Dick (read his Exegesis and you’ll know what I mean).

      Lots more that I could write here. There is a post of mine, a bit below, about the Mandela effect.

  3. As I’ve earlier said it doesn’t matter who is credited with discovering the effect. Google credits one Fiona Broome,an attendee at Dragon*Con. But otherwise google is vehemently opposed to any idea other than false memory. Trolls are there at reddit sub of mandela effect,who seem to be paid,agents saboteur, to use the tone of Robert Ludlum,agent provocateur. However there is a reddit sub r/retconned that encourages serious discussion and prohibits trolls coming from mandela effect sub. There is definitely some agency actively debunking the esoteric aspects of mandela effect,and uap phenomena could be tied up with it.

    1. Great observations, Vivek, thank you! I appreciate you taking the time to look into this, and share what you’ve found.

      After posting my update yesterday, I realized that there may be a more subtle – and perhaps unexpected – explanation for some of the efforts to silence Mandela Effect discussions.

      That is, we may be treading upon areas of volatile research, particularly in quantum fields, where the results are being skewed with so many of us acting as “observers.”

      1. You’re reminding me of something that Stephen Braude said – the author of that Gold Leaf Lady book. Well, he probably wasn’t the first to say it, but I read about him speculating about this possibility. He was saying that, for all of these centuries, scientists might not have been actually studying how the world actually is. If they have been subconsciously, and unknowingly, psychokinetically affecting their own experiments, then they are actually studying a combination of how the world actually is combined with their own psychokinetic effects on the world.

  4. It has been a month,since. What I’ve noticed is that Church of England is a race rather than a branch of christianity. What with Lewis Carroll, Roosevelts,Churchill,Bush,Blair,Broome having sway over the world. Never getting bogged down by adversity.

  5. I’ve done extensive research on this topic which led me here. it’s interesting that Fiona doesn’t own up to fact that she just remembered wrong or took a science fiction book too seriously which made people confused. I don’t know how it caused this much mass confusion but in my most humble opinion Fiona just rode this ridiculous wave that’s spinning out of control till this day and she just enjoys it. Why don’t you just tell the truth and stop with the weird alternative universe, simulation theory B.S?

    1. Paul, clearly you have missed the point of the original Mandela Effect website. (I understand. It’s been offline for years.)

      As I’ve said in my book, I started that website to find out how many other people mistakenly thought Nelson Mandela had died in prison, and how/why we’d been confused. (I still don’t have an answer to that. To date, no explanation fits what I recall, but I’m still searching.)

      Over time – and as more people joined the conversation – the number of “misremembered” topics grew. We tried to find some commonalities or patterns, but never reached a confident conclusion. There was no one-size-fits-all answer. Not for the more bizarre ones, anyway.

      What followed from there were fun, speculative conversations. We didn’t take the topic that seriously. It was mostly flippant, geeky whimsy, with a few “what-the-heck-?” additions. And lots of delightful sci-fi and quantum references.

      I’m sorry you can’t appreciate the threads that followed, on the actual Mandela Effect site… and continue to this day, at least in conversations that I participate in. Some are speculative. Others are banter. And a few are serious.

      If you can’t discern the differences, it’s best that you halt your “extensive research,” because it’s clearly confused and upset you.

      I don’t like some ways this topic has spun, but the toothpaste won’t go back into the tube. I mourn the loss of the fun, whimsical conversations, and quirky connections we made from 2009 – 2011 or so.

      But that was over 10 years ago, and we can’t freeze time (not yet, anyway) or keep viral topics in a corral. Once they’re in the wild… Well, that’s it. They go wild! lol

      If you’re going to hold me personally responsible for how social media and trolls have evolved (and devolved) the Mandela Effect topic… Well, I’m not sure I can put a label on the various ways it’s been spun. I’d have to be super-human even to monitor all of them, much less put the brakes on the crazier (in a not-hilarous-way) versions of the topic.

      I’ve been a fan of quantum studies since I first stumbled onto Max Planck’s theories related to energy quanta. And, growing up in the halls of MIT, related topics have steadily fascinated me.

      Do quantum studies actually explain some of the Mandela Effect? I haven’t a clue.

      Though I’m the first to admit that we’re still knee-deep in speculation rather than solid proof in our related discussions… Well, if you can’t “hear” the fun in it (acknowledging that text rarely conveys “voice” as well as it might), please find other, more interesting topics for your “extensive research.”

      Personally, I wince at the various, related conspiracy theories.

      Also, I utterly hate that people are using the Mandela Effect to lead gullible people question their own very real memories. That’s destabilizing, and it’s NOT okay.

      Nobody – even me (yes, I’m joking) – can control/censor every Mandela Effect conversation. If I could use one word for how I feel about the weird way some folks twist it, and how very seriously they take what had been flippant speculation, it would be “exasperation.”

      However, there are still some fun and amusing conversations, and I’ll admit that, yes, I enjoy those.

      This isn’t one of them, and hope that clears up obvious confusions for you and others. I get really, really tired of explaining this.

  6. Instead of alternate universe,it’s more likely that we’ve fallen through a rabbit hole. Where kings and queens and their minions are just pack of cards. Fiona towering over them like the Alice. It’s quite amusing to hear a pack rat telling Alice ‘hold your tongue’. Who cares for you? said Alice(she had grown to her full size by this time). You’re nothing but a pack of cards.

  7. Hello Fiona,
    Thank you for this explanation.
    I was in Iraq in 2005 – ’06 and came upon a little known phenomenon called, The MANDALA Effect. I followed it into some very interesting Ancient Eastern ideas that sounded very much like current quantum theory and simulation.
    I was a little bit distraught when I saw that it had been renamed, The Mandela Effect, because he hadn’t died in my time-line. Now the whole conversation is unrecognizable. I feel like The Effect is being manipulated to seem like a mental error (similar to what they have made Deja-vu) so that no one will seriously question their reality or be able to follow the crumbs to the source.
    Anyways, thank you for your research. I look forward to what you have for the future.

  8. Hello Fiona and everyone here. I am usually not talking much about the Mandela effect, however, today (it’s April 20th 2024) I noticed – rather unexpectedly – a Mandela effect, going back to 1987. And more important, it concerns myself, something that I did (in 1987) and now, all proofs of it are just gone. I will explain, the purpose of this comment is to see whether others have experienced something similar. That it goes back to 1987 is another “piece of the puzzle”.

    It happened on September 6th 1987. I was a guest in a quiz program, a travel quiz on national TV in my country. That program was one of the more popular ones 40 years ago.

    It’s important to mention that this program was “live”, so it was filmed and viewed “live”, no cutting or editing. As an experience for a young guy (that I was then) it was a pretty exciting event.

    While in the studio, the videorecorder (still VHS) taped the quiz at home.
    Today I watched that original VHS-tape of the quiz program.
    I had not watched it in over twenty years.
    But I knew very well whàt was in the programme, and on “my tape” as well.
    I watched it right after I came back home from the studio.

    One particular scene has DISAPPEARED from the tape, as if it never happened!
    A scene where I demonstrated a particular ceremony in a faraway country.
    It lasted only about 20 seconds, but while I remember showing the ceremony in the studio ànd seeing it long ago on tape, it’s gone now.

    It is a really “trivial” event, but SO obvious. it makes no sense at all, but then again, most Mandela effects are like that I think.

    I left out some details, which are not important for the “event” itself. What matters, is the “individual central role” that I as a person went through.

    So, anyone else here that experienced something similar?

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