If someone sent you this and said 'look at the ghost' they must have viewed it on another from of hardware as, to my eyes (which are very good - unlike the rest of my body) the face is not noticeable when the picture is reduced to the size it would be, even on the largest phone camera screen, even when you know it's there. If it has been viewed on a PC it has therefore had the opportunity, although I'm not saying that's what has happened - just that the opportunity existed, to be shopped and uploaded again.
(edit - Of course the camera probably has a zoom facility which, depending on its quality, might allow you to pick out the face, but I'd still have to wonder what someone was doing zooming in on a girls knees in the first place - although, to each there own I suppose).
I'm also a little wary because if you shove this in photoshop and then magnify the face there is what appears to be a smudge defining the top of the ghosts head, bleeding into the left knee of the girl on the face's left, which seems to be out of character with the pixels around it. In fact, if you magnify the face and use the smudge tool in photoshop (at around 9 pixels) just above this spot in a right-left direction (as you look at the image) you can repeat the effect almost exactly.
Don't get me wrong. I love ghost photos, even the bullshit ones, and this is great. But I have reservations.
I don't see any fake. There's no evidence of tampering. The "smudge" over the leg is just the high JPG compression and the small child IS present on the mobile photo*
Nope, no fake, just a few shadows that look vaguely like a human face.
* Edit: To avoid argument on this point you need to understand how JPG compression works. On the photo of the guy holding the mobile, the photo on his phone is (obviously) very small but more to the point the colours are desaturated due to the reflection on the screen.
This means that the photo within the photo is (a) tiny and (b) contains very similar colours. When similar colours sit next to each other, and the resultant image is compressed, they blend into each other far more than if the colours were markedly different. In a small image like this, it can make a big difference.
In this case, it looks like the small child has vanished. He hasn't. It's the same photo as the large one.
In addition, there is some overlay text bottom right in the small photo (likely the photo number or date) which further confuses things. Clearly this isn't present in the downloaded version.
the little girl is on the mobile screen, as far as i can tell. you have to look under the young woman's elbow. the black cushion is much more to the right than the small girl.
the fact is, i think the "ghost" is just another child, who appears a little unfocused/blurred/underexposed, but his position would explain that.
has anybody noticed that further on the left, at more or less the same height as the "ghost", there's a simulacrum of ET's skeleton? (parallele lines that look like a rack of ribs)
The child is without question in the small image - I would bet a large amount of money on it. As a digital artist who works with this stuff everyday it would be pretty embarrassing if I was wrong.
(and that's not even considering the obvious question - if you're trying to fake a ghost photo why cut and paste another photo of a child into the image then happily pose with the original for the press?)
Anyway, that's just a sideshow (literally!) - lets not get diverted from the face amongst the legs.
If that is a fake, you have to give them marks for originality - most alleged ghost faces appear amongst other faces, or at least at a level where a face might be, not down on the floor.
Could be a child crawling around the floor, I suppose, but somehow the lighting doesn't look right.
Is the pic posted at the original size, or has it been reduced? (I know some mobiles now have as many pix as many cameras.) It would be interesting to see the pic (or at least the 'ghost' part) at maximum resolution.
This same picture was posted on the 16th of Jan on another forum that I'm a member of. And the poster ('Willow' on that message board) said it was taken by one of his sister's friends, at New Year. Which would make it two weeks before the picture was taken by your family friends.
It seems to me that this pic is doing the rounds on the 'net at the moment, and everyone is claiming it to be taken by someone they know... a FOAF-pic!
I don't see why that rules out a simulacrum. There may simply just happen to be an object on the floor at that point which is 'merging' with the curtain because the photo is rather low resolution. There is certainly an odd dark area below the 'face' which seems to be entirely devoid of detail. This might be a case of low latitude ie. loss of detail in dark areas of digital photos. As it doesn't occur in adjacent areas, that's why I suggested that there was a dark object on the floor there, behind the girls.
If you cover the dark area under the 'face', it looks more like a simple fold in the curtain. The 'face' shape is caused by the chance alignment of the trousers on either side.
I've looked at hundreds of ghost photos over the years and very few are fake. The majority are just misinterpretations of patterns of light.
If you try to enhance the photo it just produces artefacts that weren't there to start with. For that reason, I wouldn't regard it as evidence for anything.
i now that not many people are going to believe this but one of the girls in the photo lives in my village. she is friends with my niece. I was told of this photo by my niece (who knows that i am interested in the paranormal etc) she told me not last week or the week before but about 4months ago. there is ayoung crying girl in the photo she is a sister to one of the girls in the photo. alas i never got the chance to see the photo before it was in the paper last week but when i asked my niece if it was the one she had seen 4 months ago she said yes and told my that it had not been tampered with. The person in the paper who said that he had taken the photo doesnt even know any of the girls their families have made complaints to the paper for printing a photo of them without permission.