In all the time I’ve spent looking for real ghost pictures to post on our site, I’ve seen more fake ghost pictures than I care to remember. What bothers me though is how blatantly fake most of these fake ghost pictures look.

For example, there are an increasing number of mostly Asian ghost pictures that feature a female “ghost” who unabashedly resembles the ghost from “Ringu” or “The Ring” to my fellow Americans. Now, maybe the makers of those movies know something about the paranormal that I don’t, but I’m pretty sure all the spirits in that region aren’t taking the same form.

Inspired by these and other laughable fake ghost images I’ve come across, as well as the poor gullible people I see falling for them, I’ve compiled a list of common sense checks I use when looking for real ghost images. for our site. I’m not a photography expert, and I’m not saying that passing any of these benchmarks proves that an image is paranormal. However, they will hopefully help you weed out blatant fraud, giving you more time to spend on possibly real ghost pictures.

Five common-sense ways to spot a fake ghost image: (In no particular order)

1. What is the source? This should be the most obvious. Like anything else in life, can you trust where the image comes from? Doing a little research on sources can help prevent pranksters from wasting your time.

2. Does it seem too good to be true? It probably is, you should have listened to your mother! Since pirated copies of powerful photo-editing software are so readily available, you should assume that anything too neat or too perfect is fake.

3. Pay special attention to shadow/light angles. Most of the new photo editors don’t know how to match the highlights and shadows. Does the sun appear to shine on a “ghost” in an indoor image? That’s an extreme example, but I’ve seen it.

4. Are there other “glitches” in the photo? In my experience, most scams are not done by expert photo editors. Usually there are scale issues, perspective issues and a whole mess of other telltale features when an image has been manipulated.

5. Is your drawing of an orb? It’s probably not paranormal. This can be a controversial stance, but in my opinion, there are just too many perfectly natural ways “orbs” can appear in a photo. I heard that they can be considered real if they emit their own light. Even this could be explained as ball lightning etc. This is not to say that the people submitting orb images are trying to get a quick one, they may be totally convinced that it is legit. It’s such a gray area, and they tend to occur naturally so often, why waste time?