Texts from the dead have become the modern equivalent of phone calls from “beyond the grave. With such calls reported since the late 19th century, scientists from the Colorado Institute for Paranormal Research believe phantom texts are possible. A research team recently analyzed 132 mysterious texts received by friends and family hours, days or months after the phone’s owner passed. In 94 of the cases, the only “reasonable” explanation is that the messages came from, well, you can guess.
“The slang and abbreviations people use when texting are as individualistic as handwriting,” explains lead researcher Dr. Nick Horn. “We were able to confirm with a high degree of certainty that the messages were indeed composed by people who were no longer living.”
One case tells the story of a 19-year-old New Mexico college student who was killed in a head-on collision after an argument with her mother. The mother received a text that read, “Soree mom. 4 giv me,” however the message was sent two hours after the teen was pronounced dead at the hospital.
“There is no possibility that someone else texted the mother as a cruel prank,” Dr. Horn notes. “The phone was recovered from the wreck smashed to bits and melted.”
Sexting From the Great Beyond?
Just because a person is deceased doesn’t mean sexting isn’t a possibility. Researchers tell of a Minnesota resident who received a sexually-explicit message from his departed fiancée, who died of a brain tumor six months prior. At the time of the text, the fiancée’s phone was uncharged, deactivated, and sitting in a kitchen drawer.
“The message invited him to join her in specific physical acts using coded phrases such as ‘play helicopter’ only the two of them understood,” says the expert. “Attached to the text was the blurry image of a nude figure that resembled the deceased fiancée.” Oh boy.
Phantom Phone Calls
While the first ghostly text messaging case was reported in 2006 and has steadily risen since then (much like the popularity of texting itself), the phantom phone call phenomenon is nothing new. It’s certainly made for some great ghost stories.
“The first phantom phone call was reported in 1886, just ten years after Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone,” noted Dr. Horn. Three years after the Titanic sank, an S.O.S from the vessel was received by a Norwegian freighter, the first known ghost Morse Code message. The first fax from the other side was reported in 1987, a few years after the fax machine came into popular use. And emails from the dead began to crop up in the mid-1990s.
“The departed are always trying to communicate with their loved ones and they use the means they were familiar with in life. With every technological advance, the paranormal application trails a little bit behind,” remarks Horn. “We anticipate getting reports on tweets from the dead in the next year or two.”
Whether you believe in ghosts or not, texting from beyond the grave is certainly a creep-worthy topic to stay aware of during Halloween.