What caused the green horse image in MSNBC's Egypt coverage

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMhcDqm72Xs

I don’t know anything about cameras, what camera issue would an image of a green horse show up? Was it a reflection of one of the horse riding riot police in Egypt?

This is being treated as an apocolyptic type prophecy, and I can’t find anyone seriously looking into the camera issues behind it.

My take is its a reflection off glass, you can see other dots trailing behind it. Probably a TV screen is behind the window and the video is being taken at an angle to the window.

This effect used to be used to show ghosts on stage, its called peppers ghost. Might be deliberate hoax, but more likely coincidence.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pepper’s_ghost

Otara

Looks to me like lens flarecaused by the fire in the background.

I don’t know if it’s flare or a reflection, but it is certainly an artifact of the camera related to the fire. You’ll notice that the motion of the ghost image exactly tracks to the panning of the camera. As **Otara **notes as well, there are other dots that also move that are probably caused by other light sources in the image. That people think it looks like a horse is just overactive imagination. The human brain is so good at recognizing patterns that it finds them where they don’t exist.

Here is a still photo I took last year that shows how flare can cause such ghost images when light sources are included in the shot. Those are not UFOs, they map exactly to light sources down and to the right in the photo. Same thing is happening in this video.

I say it’s the result of off-screen fluorescent lights reflecting off the horse.

The lights cause the horse to appear green because the video was shot using daylight white balance, which tend to turn fluorescent lights green.

(The poster below will disagree with me.)

You are prescient indeed :smiley: There is no horse.

It’s a ghost.

Looks like a flag or some other green cloth which is being reflected and “moves” when the camera pans.

It isn’t horse shaped (even adding a rider), that’s just your brain filling in details.

I’m 99.9% certain that’s what it is. The pattern in the green flare even follows the movement of the flames. Just repeatedly pause and play and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

Those are the Four Horseflies Of The Apocalypse.

Almost by definition; anyone looking at it would not be someone to take seriously.

Greenhorse gasses are primarily responsible for the green horse effect.

And we have our winner!

I’m not convinced it’s lens flare. The “horseflies” are all moving in unison, without distortion. This is more consistent with a reflection off a flat window.

Please, please, please tell me that this is a spoof and that nobody in the world is treating this as “an apocolyptic type prophecy.” How could the human race have sunk that low?

That is a good point. I was judging it being flare as you can see the patterns of smoke in the fire in the green spot. But I suppose that maybe that would be possible with it just being a run of the mill reflection? At any rate, the effect is caused by an optical distortion involving glass. That covers our bases, right? :slight_smile:

Check youtube or google. People are saying it is the ‘pale horse’ of the 4 horsemen of the apocolypse.

Yeah, well, these are the same people who think that “Ghost Hunters” is a science show…

Concur - it flickers and undulates in unison with the fire - some kind of flare or other related effect in the camera’s optics or front glass.

My first thought was that the reflection idea was more likely, but after looking at CookingWithGas’s picture, I realized the flares are all located opposite the center of the image, and just as far from the center as the original light.

The “horse” is always opposite the center point as the camera pans, and the “horseflies” are also opposite the center point from a bright light as well. Lens flare.