The Internet in modern times is ubiquitous. There seems to be not a soul on the planet who can't plug into the information superhighway whenever they like, and do or look at whatever their heart desires. In this age of Internet access we have at out fingertips all manner of knowledge, entertainment, others, but there is a darker side to all of this. Scattered through the landscape of cyberspace there are many stories of weirdness, and one area of this is that of strange people who have popped up to create bizarre sites, mysteries, and wonder, covering everything from conspiracies to ghosts and curses. Here we get into the stranger side of the Internet you take for granted every day.
In 2006 a curious video feed popped up on the site 4chan. A Korean woman of unknown age called merely “Chip-Chan” began live streaming her life 24-hours a day from several cameras throughout her apartment, every day without fail. Much of this was quite mundane, with her watching TV, surfing the net, or eating lunch, certainly not cleaning up, as her place was little more than a filthy hovel, and always in her pajamas, so it was all really quite boring, but people couldn’t stop watching. There were also audio feeds and she frequently talked to herself, mostly gibberish and nonsensical ranting, and other oddities surrounded her as well. One was that she would sleep for incredibly long periods of time, sometimes between 15 and 20 hours at a time, and in such awkward and bizarre positions that it was not uncommon for people to think she was dead. Indeed, her feed began as she was asleep, and the initial reaction was she was a dead body. Throughout her apartment are signs in Korean with very bizarre messages scrawled on them, such as “Don’t get tricked, don’t get fooled. Early every morning. If someone comes that paralyzes the person. I can’t be stopped.” She also has strange rashes, sores, and what appear to be bruises and other wounds on her body, although there were no noticeable causes for them. She sometimes left a room with a camera in it, but never for very long, ensuring that she is nearly constantly on screen. The feed kept on like this, and she began making some very bizarre claims.
According to Chip-Chan, she was being held hostage in her apartment by a corrupt police officer known only as “P,” and that he had implanted her with a mind control device. She would claim that if she were to disobey him in any way, he could with the push of a button render her unconscious or even dead, and she also claimed that he never let her leave her apartment. She also claimed that it was because of this chip that she slept so long and in such uncomfortable positions, and she claimed she didn’t remember it or even like sleeping at all, saying, “I do not know what have happened while I sleep. I have been always afraid of sleeping.” She often spoke to the viewers about this predicament, telling them that they need to contact a man named Park Sang-Man, her former landlord, who she says can help her.
The feed has continued to as recently as 2020, so this is actually ongoing, and there has been much sleuthing on Chip-Chan, but she remains frustratingly mysterious. For instance, no one can figure out where she lives, although it is thought to be somewhere in Seoul. There have also been alleged pictures of her walking on the street, despite her claims that she never leaves her apartment. No one has been able to find “Park Sang-Man” or managed to figure out who “P” is or if either one of them even exists at all, and there have been all sorts of ideas as to what is going on here. Some think it is just an elaborate ongoing art project, while others think that she is just a very mentally disturbed woman who needs help, and even people who think that she is telling the truth and it is all real. After over a decade of this with no answers, it certainly seems as if we’ll never know for sure.
From 2009 we have the weird and complicated mystery of a mysterious Reddit user who called himself “ReligionOfPeace,” later known as “Milo.” ReligionOfPeace was a moderator on a subreddit called /r/jailbait, which highlighted underage-looking models, actresses, and porn stars, although they were legally of age, so he was not breaking any laws, just deeply creepy. Indeed, he described himself as being in his 70s, making him the quintessential creepy old man. He apparently posted quite prolifically on the subreddit, and was known for being brash, profane, and offensive, often typing out tirades in all-caps. He also showed a lot of knowledge of the military and ways to kill people, and he made many claims about his military experience. He also made statements that suggested intelligence knowledge, such as talking in depth about “IronKeys,” which are encrypted flash drives used by intel operatives. He also had a website called “Lake City Quiet Pills,” which he referred to as “That Old Guy's Image Host,” and was more pornographic stuff, but it also hinted at something more sinister. ReligionOfPeace would often refer to ominous things there, such as one post in which he wrote “I can think of any number of criminal organizations that would benefit from a dose of lake city quiet pills.” It was all rather spooky, but there was nothing overtly illegal going on here.
The strangeness would start when on July 17th, 2009 there was suddenly a new Reddit account created called “2-6” and a message from the poster, who announced that ReligionOfPeace had died at the age of 79. The profanity-laced message, full of grammar and spelling mistakes, claimed that ReligionOfPeace’s real name was Milo, and explained that they had met in the military and that they had been friends and he would miss him. Despite the fact that ReligionOfPeace,” had been rather unpleasant, there were nevertheless many condolences posted over the next few days for the man now known as Milo. The poster 2-6 only stuck around for a short time before vanishing, saying he hated Reddit, and the account was never used again.
It was not long before Redditors turned up another account called “AngelTwo-Six” on a website called “Fark,” which was sort of like Reddit before there was a Reddit. The weird thing was that this user had put in the e-mail address [email protected] Com, which for Redditors was too much to be coincidence. It was thought that this was the same person who had posted about the death of Milo, and on this site, he talked much of guns, shooting, and violence. The site itself was just on the surface an image hosting site, mostly more porn, but then some computer savvy users began picking at the underlying HTML code and uncovered some very spooky and mysterious stuff. One of the first things they found was the site motto which said “Dispensing Lake City Quiet Pills to lousy bastards in need of permanent rest since 1968." After that there was a lot of nonsensical names, numbers, and acronyms, thought to be some kind of code, and then we get to the really weird stuff.
After the strange codes there was a list of what almost looked like the want ads, only these were geared for what appeared to be mercenary, defense contractor, intelligence, bodyguard, and assassin work. There were numerous entries of this nature, all hidden in the code of Lake City Quiet Pills, and it looked very much like a secret job posting site for hitmen, assassins, military contractors, black ops, and wet work. There are even tips for torturing people, with AngelTwo-Six in one post saying “From past experience, placing the bastard's head in a sack with hungry rats (or leeches) works nicely." It got even spookier when a secret message was found on the site thought to be from 2-6 and dating to the day of the death of ReligionOfPeace, which says that Milo had died “quiet and calm, not like we all figured,” and there is another message saying “So hoist a few for the old man. Remember what he said, keep with the man whose got your back.” Soon after there was another post that said, “For those who have asked, I bricked Milo's IronKey the same day. All is well.” Remember that IronKeys are encrypted drives used by intelligence agents, and “bricking” refers to destroying the information on them, so what was going on here? But wait, it gets even better.
On January 19th, 2010, the man named Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, who was the chief of logistics for Hamas's military wing, was assassinated in a hotel room in Dubai. He had been tortured by electrocution, after which he had been injected with a paralyzing agent and suffocated with a pillow. The assassins, around almost a dozen of them, would all be caught on security footage, but never identified, although it is known that they had all entered the country on fake passports and were operatives of some sort from several different Western countries, the UK, Ireland, Australia, France, and Germany, causing a major international incident. The assassination was all over the news, and some Redditors would find what appear to be coded messages related to it on Lake City Quiet Pills starting from a week before the assassination, including mention of using several hotels, Dubai, and other little details that would play out in security footage of the assassination. Other messages on the day of the assassination suggest a mission had been successful, including one that says:
Here is the final for the party. hotel rooms 48341 limo 6080 bus 569 bar bill 18890 food 8030 dancers 8300 misc tips 850 misc exp 2840 med supplies 180 (fat tommy and stu are okay, to.) total 94080 you all did dutch milo proud. thanks.
The idea was that this was a hit coordinated through the site, and almost immediately after this was suggested, the code for Lake City Quiet Pills was changed and encrypted, and when Redditors tried to break it, it was encrypted again. Shortly after this, Lake City Quiet Pills was taken completely offline. What was going on with this site? Who was ReligionOfPeace and AngelTwo-six? What was Lake City Quiet Pills? There are many theories, such as that it was a hoax, an elaborate alternate reality game, or an art project. Others think that this could be a real online job forum for assassins, melding the world of Internet mysteries with international espionage and intrigue. We'll probably never know.
In 2011 some weird activity began to revolve around the Facebook page of a Canadian woman by the name of Karin Catherine Waldegrave, who was claimed on the page to be born in London and multilingual, speaking languages as diverse as French, Estonian, Latvian, English, Russian, Gallic, Latin, and German, as well as holding a PhD from the University of Toronto, Canada. So far it doesn’t seem all that unusual, but things got very weird very quickly on the page. Interspersed with somewhat lucid, normal posts were rambling, nonsensical ones that were for the most part incoherent nonsense, that were followed by reams of comments from Waldegrave herself, which were just as bizarre and cryptic, and suggested that she was having conversations with herself, often in more than one language. Hundreds of updates and comments would be added to these posts, sometimes up to 700 replies within a mere 12 hours, all of them seemingly random gibberish. The posts themselves would come in quick succession, often paragraphs and paragraphs of text that would be posted within minutes of each other, to soon be deluged with a barrage of strange, meaningless comments. One such enigmatic post reads as follows:
Also, the organized criminal pervert network which constructed our upscale condominium building in 1997 is advised to stop peeping tommery in it and activist social programming while harassing homeowners in a variety of ways including master key type entry in absentia and aggressive impertinent socialite curiosity. Selling retired entrepreneurial couples, war veterans, and young married couples with toddler age children and without (also considering other residents such as young professionals such as accountants as renters in the building) $2.5 Million worth of real estate (us for example – we are married and have been spouses for 8 years in a long marriage, a second long and faithful marriage for both of us – lifelong home owners in Canada both with the exception of 1947 – 1952), continuing peeping over the years and other home invading behaviour by frequent knocks on the door.
None of it makes a lick of sense, yet would be followed by reams of comments from the poster herself, all of them just as jarringly bizarre and some of them posted within seconds of each other regardless of length, making it seem impossible that a person could have typed them out. Curiously, only a handful of pictures of Waldergrave herself would appear on the page, and in every instance they seemed to be damaged in some way. Many of her posts focused on rants about government conspiracies, and in later days Waldergrave spent a lot of time rambling on about the CIA, the FBI, and the shadowy Men in Black. She claimed that she was being watched and stalked by them, and that she knew all about their dark dealings. There was also mention of having knowledge of the activities of several international government agencies and their deranged operations.
Just as this odd Facebook page was starting to make the rounds and draw the attention of those who would learn what it all meant, the page was taken down and dissolved into nothing. There was no sign of where the information had gone, who Karin Catherine Waldegrave was, or whether she was ever even a real person at all. One of the most popular ideas about this page is that it was a sort of communications line for sending coded, encrypted secret information, sort of a bulletin board for spies. Another is that it was a computer program creating random text in order to analyze random text generation. Then there is the possibility that this was the page of a deeply disturbed individual and that this was a recorded log of her descent into insanity. It is quite possible we will never know for sure, and there has never been any further communication from Waldegrave. Whatever this was has gone onto become the stuff of Internet legend.
Some mysteries of the Internet have more of an air of urban legend than others, but this doesn’t make them any less spooky. One tale that has made the rounds is that of a woman named Annora Petrova, who was a figure skater and had big dreams of someday becoming a world champion. The story goes that one day she decided to look herself up Google on a whim and to her surprise found that there was a Wikipedia page dedicated to her. Oddly, in addition to the usual Wikipedia background information the page gave her information on things in her life that had not even happened yet, such as figure skating competitions she would win or lose. It was like a crystal ball, and she began to make a habit of checking the page before every competition to see whether she would win or lose
Out of curiosity, Annora tried to go onto the page to edit it and the page began to spit vile hatred and venomous vitriol at her. Among some of the menacing rants that suddenly materialized on the page were predictions that she would become a “pathetic little orphan,” and that her parents would die in a horrible car crash, as well as “Annora Petrova is a selfish little bitch who is going to get what she deserves.” Despite breaking down in tears every time she looked at it, Annora still felt compelled to look at the page every day, and she finally called Wikipedia to complain but the company claimed to have no knowledge of the page she was talking about. The panicked young woman then tried to call her parents to tell them about it but she claimed that every time she did so she could only hear an ominous, sinister laughter on the other end of the line.
Annora then is said to have headed to Switzerland in pursuit of her dreams and her skating career supposedly really took off. One day after auditioning for a show called “The Ice Circus” she checked the mysterious Wikipedia page again to see if it said whether she would pass it or not, and it instead stated that the next day “Annora Petrova died friendless and alone.” The distraught skater apparently e-mailed the whole ominous story to her friend, and it ends with a chilling statement as she sits in her room waiting for the predicted death to come for her:
God, it’s been forever, I keep refreshing but it still hasn’t changed, I’m waiting for midnight, I don’t know what to do, so I locked myself in my room. There’s only a few minutes to midnight now. All I can do is refresh the page. I’m exhausted, but I can’t stop. I’m afraid.
This has the distinct feel of merely a creepy Internet legend, but it is still unsettling nevertheless. One prevalent type of sinister sort of urban legend revolving around mysteries people is that of websites that are supposedly haunted or cursed in some form, or linked in some way to the supernatural. One well-known story of a ghost on the Internet is that of a 4chan user named Katy Robinson. In 2008, Katy allegedly posted a photo of herself onto the site’s imageboard and was subsequently mercilessly berated and bullied for being overweight. The next day, another 4chan user claiming to be Katy’s sister came on to say that the girl had been so morose over the insults that she had killed herself. So far, so creepy, but it gets much weirder.
Not long after this alleged death, posts began popping up online of a bizarre individual called “Jeff the Killer,” who appeared as an incredibly pale-faced person with distorted features, a gaping insane smile, and blank, shark-like eyes. The extremely disturbing images became an Internet sensation, a pervasive meme, and Jeff the Killer quickly worked his way into web lore. When some Internet users began trying to figure out just where the strange, obviously digitally altered photos of Jeff the Killer had come from, some noticed that in the earlier photos the demonic looking individual bore a strange similarity in appearance to the dead Katy Robinson, including the hairstyle and a distinctive mole on her face.
This theory that the photos of Jeff the Killer were altered, photoshopped images of Katy Robinson further propelled the creepy tale into legend. One theory is that the original photo of Jeff the Killer was an altered picture of Katy taken by a person who had murdered her, or that the picture had been taken by one of her tormentors and changed as a practical joke, after which it had been further heavily photoshopped and doctored by other Internet users to become ever more frightening. Some have said that in later incarnations of the Jeff the Killer photos, the eyes have been replaced with those of a corpse and the jaw that of a dead dog. A more far-out theory is that Jeff the Killer is the restless ghost of Katy herself, haunting the Internet. It is unknown just what the true origins of Jeff the Killer are, or indeed if there really ever was a Katy Robinson who killed herself over cyber bullying, so it all remains speculation and spooky lore, but it is damn creepy all the same.
There are other supposed cursed videos on the Internet as well, and one of the earliest and creepiest of these is a little piece of nightmare fuel with the unwieldy title of “Mereana Mordegard Glesgorv.” The originally 2-minute video was uploaded onto YouTube in 2008 when the site was still in its infancy, and features the titular man simply staring intently and unsettlingly into the camera against a color-filtered blood red backdrop before suddenly cracking an evil looking smile. That’s it. That’s the whole video, but for such a simple sounding piece of footage it is deeply disturbing for reasons one cannot quite put one’s finger on, and it went on to spin rumors that it was heavily cursed.
It is was claimed that the video was impossible to watch for long before one simply had to look away, and that no one could stand watching it for more than 45 seconds before they would either have to avert their eyes, break down crying, or start screaming. If one were to make it all the way through to that final, demonic smile, it was said that the video would inevitably drive them completely, violently insane. Rumors abounded of people watching the clip all the way through only to begin cutting themselves with knives, or in more extreme tales actually ripping out their own eyeballs, even purportedly sending their disembodied eyes to the YouTube offices, or committing suicide in a fit of insanity. Others supposedly carved cryptic inscriptions into their forearms which cannot be decoded. Many of those who claimed to have been held in the grip of the “cursed” video reported not being able to remember what had happened during their episode. Indeed it was rumored that YouTube took the video down because so many people were going mad and hurting themselves after watching it. When the video resurfaced again, it had been heavily edited down to only 20 seconds in length, which was said to have been in order to avoid its sinister effects, as well as for YouTube to show that it was not cursed and possibly to keep people from searching for the full-length version.
The legend of the video goes that it was never discovered who had originally posted it or why. The story of Mereana Mordegard Glesgorv went viral and exploded across the Internet. The video was widely discussed amongst paranormal enthusiasts and regularly featured on blogs, forums, and websites about the mysterious, well, like this one that I’m writing on now, and was the subject of countless articles and chain e-mails. Interestingly, the video gained particular prominence in Russia, where it was incredibly popular and much talked about on numerous blogs and forums, with many claiming that it was some sort of mind control weapon designed by the U.S. Secret Service or some other shadowy government organization.
While this is all most definitely frightening, it is mostly thought that the whole Mereana Mordegard Glesgorv tale originated as a piece of creepypasta, which is fictional stories written of as if they are real phenomena and which often birth persistent Internet urban legends. Adding to the evidence that it is a hoax is the fact that another YouTube video was later released that explained the whole thing as a sham created by an eBaumsworld user who had used a picture of a man they claimed was a marketing coordinator at an LA-based advertising agency that had been found on a web design site called hillmancurtis.com, and who was later claimed by Russian bloggers to be a man named Byron Cortez.
Despite all of this, the video has maintained a cult following and plenty of conspiracy theorists who still claim that the video is more than it appears to be. Indeed there are many who still claim that there is something sinister about the clip, that it has the ability to cause the rumored effects, that this is all a true story, and who dare not watch it all the way through. Those who believe the tale say that the talk of a hoax is false, or that even using the photo of a known person the creator was somehow able to craft a potent cursed clip, and claim that there have been attempts to enact a cover-up of the videos true evil origins. Whatever the case may be, Mereana Mordegard Glesgorv is still so undeniably spooky and popular that in the years since its first appearance there have been numerous variations created by Internet users, many of which are at least deeply unsettling if not exactly cursed. Anyone who wants to give watching the video a shot can see it here. Cursed or not, I am sure it will at the very least freak you out.
Here have been just some of the many, many weird mysteries floating about on the world wide web. Many people use it every day without having the slightest idea that these freaky oddities are out there in the badlands of cyberspace. No matter what truth any of them have, they are certainly a new, strange feature of the landscape unique to our evolving technology, and no doubt there will be plenty more creepy stories like this to come.