Why “Danish mother seeking” by KarenDK26 is fiction!

This morning, I was contacted by a reporter from a major Danish TV-station, who wanted to know more about this video of an alleged 26 years old woman, calling out to the unknown father of her son on YouTube. The video also displays a link to a website (http://karen26.mono.net/ ), where we can see more pictures of “Karen and her little son, August”. So I watched the video and started Twitting about it, to see if anybody knows anything. Tweets are coming in as this is written.

In my opinion, this is clearly a marketing stunt. It’s just a question about who’s behind it. On Twitter, a condom manufacturer and Danish tourist organizations are the most popular guesses. The people behind http://mono.net, who host her amateurish website, have also been mentioned by Thilde Vesterby at Mindjumpers.

This is what makes me think that “Karen’s” story is pure fiction:

1. “Karen” doesn’t remember the father’s name, appearance or nationality. This doesn’t correspond well with basic knowledge about human memory: Unusual events are often stored more efficiently in memory than ordinary events.

“Karen” doesn’t present herself as promiscuous, thus we must assume that meeting a foreign man and bringing him home with her is not something she experiences regularly. Therefore it seems unlikely that she wouldn?EUR(TM)t have remembered what this person looked like or where he was from – or what he was called, if they ever did exchange names.

If they had sex on the harbor without talking much, perhaps there would be no names exchanged. But they apparently talked about such clichés as “hygge”, which points towards a somewhat formal setting. In such a setting, it is more likely that they had exchanged names than the opposite. Furthermore, they apparently walked home together, which made it even more likely that they exchanged names. Since foreign names are often more unusual to you than names in your own language, it is more likely that she would have remembered his name, than forgotten  it.

If this was a viral campaign, a name on the father – or even a description or a nationality, would have limited the amount of people who were potentially touched by it. Therefore this supports the theory that this is fiction.

2. “Karen” doesn’t look emotionally affected by the situation. Her face and eye movements reflect no inner conflict or emotions.

For example, “Karen”  tries to give an impression of shamefulness, when she mentions her not remembering much from that evening. But it never affects her facial expressions, which remain the same no matter what she says. If this was a somewhat improvised presentation, I would have expected her to move her eyes a lot more around as se searched for words or became embarrassed. This doesn?EUR(TM)t happen – she looks into the camera, quite friendly and secure all the time.

3. Her website is under-presenting her, compared to Danes in general.

"Karen and kiddo"

In some other countries, it is impolite to ask people about their profession, but in Denmark, our occupation is a key component in our identity. It is unlikely that a real Danish girl would not reveal her occupation as one of the first things, when she made a webpage about herself. “Living alone with my son” is less likely to be the tag line of a young Danish woman’s personal website. A Danish woman would define herself as much more that a mother.

4. The “hygge” discussion is a cliché, more popular in Denmark than abroad

The only people I have EVER heard tell me that “hygge” (coziness) is something so uniquely Danish and that it can’t be translated have been Danish. It is a cliché that is mainly used in relation to tourism and not a fact that is well known outside Denmark. Thus, it is more likely that this has been fabricated than real.

5. Do the pictures and video show a mother and her child?

IMG38161_0The pictures are quite elaborated, though – different settings and clothes – and some less flattering. This could actually be her own kid – but some (vague) signs suggest that it isn’t.

In the picture of Karen and her kid reading a book (above), she covers the pages of the book with her hand. That is not a usual situation, if a mother is reading or looking at pictures with her child. It is more likely a thing you do when you want to prevent the kid from moving the book until the picture has been taken.

In the next picture of Karen almost kissing the kid (right), the child looks a bit surprised by “Karen?EUR(TM)s” appearing so close. This may off course be a coincidence, but it could also be a sign that this woman?EUR(TM)s face is not familiar – perhaps because she  is not the mother of that child.

In the video, the child also looks quite curious at both the room and “Karen”, which suggests that neither are familiar sights to him. If you follow the child’s eyes – he may actually be looking at someone to our left of the camera, but that could actually be anything – and another person is not required to operate the camera.

An why doesn’t “Karen” show any pictures of her and little August where he is an infant? The kid doesn’t seem to age much on the pictures shown on the site, where it is always summertime ;o)

Conclusion

This is with almost certainty a fictional video and it is most likely a part of a marketing campagin. But is it Danish Tourism or Condoms? You may disagree og have even more evidence for or against my conclusion – feel free to post it here…

9 replies
  1. Ilse Colding-Jørgensen
    Ilse Colding-Jørgensen says:

    Jeg hælder mere til, at videoen godt kan være rigtig, af flere grunde.
    Hun rødmer. Mest når hun taler om de følsomme ting, som har berørt hende selv.

    Da hun siger ordet “Bimbo”, kigger drengen øjeblikkeligt op på hende, og holder blikket fast dér et stykke tid, som for at sikre sig at hun er ok. Ellers har han siddet i lang tid og bare kigget frem for sig.

    Hvis han aldrig har været i rummet før, er han efter min mening temmelig apatisk. Men i øvrigt holder argumentationen ikke, for der er jo ikke nogen af os, der ved om det er optaget hjemme ved ham eller ej, og ikke noget i videoen, der skulle indikere dette.

    Det er vel ikke nødvendigt i en sådan video at fortælle manden hvordan han ser ud eller hvor han kommer fra. Enten ser han hende eller også gør han ikke, og genkender han hende ikke, kan det vist være det samme. Det er jo mere en video til ham end en efterlysning; først til sidst nævner hun, at hvis andre kan hjælpe må de også gerne det.

    Hun kan have været braldhamrende fuld, og kan måske derfor ikke huske så meget om ham. Det er pænt lang tid siden (halvandet år), og hvis hun i starten har fortrængt det og ikke gjort noget aktivt for at prøve at huske hans ansigt, kan det være nærmest umuligt at frembringe noget klart billede på nethinden senere hen. Senere har hun så skiftet mening, og kan så kun se muligheden for at få kontakt med ham gennem at vise sig selv og babyen frem. Men ok, et foto af hende selv DENGANG havde været lidt smart. Men hvem siger, at hun havde opfundet den smarteste kniv i skuffen? (Citat frit efter Brian Mikkelsen).

    Argumentet med hygge køber jeg ikke: Hey, hun er dansker! HUN husker det, og HAN spurgte til det for at komme i kanen med hende… come on, Anders, hvor er din reptilhjerne blevet af…

    Jeg er ikke enig i, at hun ikke virker følelsesmæssigt påvirket, men hun virker fattet og ja, ordene virker indlært og kommer stort set uden fejl. Men ville du ikke også øve dig først, hvis du skulle lave sådan en video, tilmed på et fremmedsprog?

    Mht. at hun dækker børnebogen med sin hånd: Kig lige igen! Det er en lydbog, og hun er ved at vise knægten hvor han skal trykke for at få en lyd ud af apparatet…

    Jeg tror, at hvis det var et reklame for kondomer eller turister ville der være én eller anden indikation, der gjorde, at man tænkte: “A-haaa, ja!”. Noget, der gav én følelsen af, at hun skulle da vist have brugt kondom (men hun ser jo ret glad ud, og det gør ungen sådan set også) eller Danmark er fuld af dejlige og villige piger (men hun fortæller jo at hun faktisk ikke har været sammen med andre siden da).

    Jeg tror bestemt, at drengen er hendes. Hun håndterer ham på en meget velkendt måde, han ligger ikke akavet eller uvant i hendes arme. Og hun slår mig ikke som totalt forskruet, og jeg ville ikke forvente af en nogenlunde normal kvinde, at hun ville gøre sit barn til objekt for sådan en video, hvis det ikke var netop for hans skyld – for at han engang skal kunne kende sin far.

    Billederne på hjemmesiden ser du som om hun selv har taget dem alle sammen. Hun fremstår som en meget ensom kvinde. Men OK, der er ingen fotos af ham som HELT lille…
    At hun ikke nævner sit job kan skyldes f.eks. tre ting: 1) Hun HAR ikke noget (hun virker veluddannet, men kan være “between jobs” og er i øvrigt nok på barsel endnu), 2) Efter hun fik sin dreng er det hende komplet uvæsentligt eller 3) Hun finder det ikke relevant på denne hjemmeside, eftersom den kun er oprettet for at finde barnets far. Måske har hun en anden hjemmeside, der handler mere om hende selv.

    Har dog én bemærkning til hjemmesiden… er den oprettet i dag (12.09.09)? Ellers er der vist en fejl på datometeret, for ALLE kommentarerne er fra i dag…

    Og Anders … tager du pis på os? Det ku ligne dig… :0) Din argumentation er lidt søgt og LIDT for akademisk (ergo-er-morlille-en-steen)…

    Svar
  2. @erkstam
    @erkstam says:

    Bra jobbat Anders! Jag såg videon första gången idag då en Facebook-kompis i Norge postade den. Min reflektion var att hon kändes helt fake. Och det jag grundade det mest på var att hon nästan glömde bort vad barnet skulle kallas i filmen. Hon skrattar till efter att ha tvekat i ett par sekunder då hon skall säga hans namn första gången.

    A hoax it is, yes! Ska bli spännande att se vad det handlar om. Och så kommer det nog att bli en och annan som blir lika sur av att ha blivit lurade som en del blev som trodde att Storspringvannet skulle rivas ;-)

    Svar

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] klippet på Twitter där två vänner från Danmark är med. En av dem, Anders Colding-Jørgensen, har då lagt upp ett blogginlägg där han förklarar varför han genomskådat det han menar är en bluff. En annan som också […]

  2. […] The video was watched by millions, and shared by many who thought that spreading the video would help this woman find the father of her child. In reality, the woman was an actor hired to increase tourism to Denmark. Newspapers in Denmark shared her story and bloggers were quick to spread the news that it was a hoax. […]

  3. […] 15:49 Virkeligheden.dk Why “Danish mother seeking” by KarenDK26 is fiction! […]

  4. […] Uppenbart fejkat tycker Anders Colding-Jørgensen som enligt sin bloggpresentation är ”erhverspsykolog” med specialisering på viral spridning i sociala medier (smaka på den). PR-byrån Mindjumpers håller med och presenterade till och med ett svar. […]

  5. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Martin Lindvall, Anders Colding-Jørg and Charlotte Jørgensen. Charlotte Jørgensen said: This is why "Danish mother seeking" by Karen26 is most likely fictional #psychology http://ow.ly/p5ln (via @anderscolding) […]

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