As those who know me are aware, I am not only a fan of lost media, but also a general believer that most “lost media stories” air on the side of truth. As such, when I heard of a lost ARG Creepypasta that might even pre-date other well known creepypasta like Ben Drowned, I was beyond excited.
On 2/14/2014, someone on /x/ posted the following:
Does anyone remember Cameraheads? Does anyone have the Camerahead pasta? Thank you.
According to legend, Camerahead is a creepypasta with ARG elements that took place in some time around 2009. After some digging, a post on /x/ from 8/8/2009 was discovered, reading:
/x/ what’s a camerahead?
I was walking home through a nearby gully and came across a weird stack of rocks and a torn envelope with some writing on it. It appeared to have been written in charcoal or ash.
It said, “I KILLED A CAMERAHEAD” on the next line “IT TOOK TREVOR” and the last line “GET HELP IF I DON’T COME BACK”
and there was a miniDV nearby. this was all that was on it besides static, though i had to watch it a few times before i found this clip.
Who took this video? A camerahead sounds really silly if it’s a monster with a camera for a head.
The same day, a video was uploaded by the channel kotyakov titled “camerahead” with a description reading “weird video i captured from a minidv i found in a gully near my house.” The video is mostly static, but for a brief period at the end a face is visible, which is supposed to give the viewer the impression they’re being watched. It’s clear something was at least planned, possibly in the form of an ARG, but this is the only video ever posted on this channel — three years after it first started.
As it stands, we know the story was listed in the /x/enopedia “bullshit” category. However, the description for that category is the following:
This is the category for The Cancer That Is Killing /x/. This can apply to trolls, memes that grew annoying through over saturation or just started off being shit, and general faggotry.
Newfags, please do not repost this shit unless you have a very, very good reason.
Considering Cameraheads managed to be put in this category (and especially considering this is the same category Slenderman was put into), you’d expect it to have a beefy page, at least for it being an example of a bad creepypasta. However, when one Lost Media Wiki user managed to dig up the page and recreate it, he found it to be rather short. Here’s the full page as it was on 4/21/2010:
A possible creature or living thing called CAMERAHEAD, which is never shown, described, or referred to except in one letter, written in charcoal or ash on a torn envelope which was picked up or seen by a poster on /x/. The original poster describes his or her experience in encountering the artifacts (a miniDV tape and the letter) and then viewing the tape, which is implied to reveal more of itself on subsequent viewings. ‘’’’’Camerahead’’’’’ is a paranormal entity described in a single post on /x/ and in a subsequent Youtube video. Since its upload on youtube, the video has been found to contain additional random clips of alleged spirits or ghosts observing the viewer. This strange appearance of seemingly random ‘ghost’ imagery is inconsistent with the original impression that a CAMERAHEAD is a living and mortal demon, forcing us to believe this video was created simply as a creep-tactic on part of the original poster who has not returned since the original posting.
The mention of “the original poster who has not returned since the original posting,” leads me to believe this is the only part of the Camerahead saga. With that said, it is also worth noting that this article was placed under “stub,” meaning it’s also possible more had existed but had not been written down at the time of this article.
While it’s not much, I did try and do a Google search limiting the results to before the first of each year from 2009 until 2015, and I found various amounts of nothing. Every now and again, an article would come up (or a creepypasta, for that matter) but checking it out would reveal it to not be the pasta I’m looking for.
So, what’s going on here? Was Camerhead an extensive creepypasta that took the form of an ARG like early supporters claimed? Well, if that were the case, one would expect that more evidence about it would be present online, and that it would at least get a mention here or there by some creepypasta veterans. Even a mention of it on an obscure archived message board would be enough to prove this pasta is bigger than just one post and one video, but as it stands, we have nothing one way or another.
It’s especially a same because, among the flood of generic lost episode and haunted video game creepypastas at the time, this is easily one of the more creative ones. The idea of a creature who watches you (some sources say Cameraheads are not even aware they do this) is not only in perfect place with the classic creepypasta characters of old, but I would argue is a much creepier premise than even famous ones like Jeff The Killer. One of the major reasons Slenderman creeped out so many people was because of just how little we knew about him. He could be in the background of any photo as a long skinny man in a business suit and it would not be out of place. Cameraheads, in my opinion, fill that role possibly better than Slenderman could have, and if they’d have caught on the internet horror genre would be much better for it.
I’m going to note that I do have a bit of a soft spot for original creepypasta characters, especially supernatural ones. Others have noted the Camerahead story came out in a time of massive surveillance, and guessed the Cameraheads were a metaphor and the whole thing was an act of political commentary (which makes me want to read it more). While the topic was far from new by 2009, again, the idea that maybe there’s a second Orwell out there writing about the importance of privacy certainly makes me want to see more.
To be honest, the biggest shame regarding this story is that we’ll likely never figure out who wrote it, it was posted by a random user on 4chan after all. I do believe whoever wrote it has some talent in the horror genre and should give writing a scary story another go if they get the chance, possibly using these creatures again. I do really like the concept of the story and the designs I’ve seen of the camerahead (my personal favorite being the one I used to start off this article) are both awesome and creative.
I may be a bit of a sucker for old school creepypastas, but I truly do find it a shame that, among the sea of forgettable bullshit the genre has since become known for, it was this one that was lost to time. Coming from someone who has read many horrible creepypastas, even if this story did turn out to be awful, it would have to be a special kind of awful to even come close to the worst that I’ve read. The fact that it manages to at least have a creative idea puts it miles ahead of much of the garbage that surrounds the wiki these days (and for years beforehand), as does the fact that it had the setup to be a half-decent horror story.
As it stands, if their is more to the tale of the Camerahead it’s unlikely it will ever be uncovered. According to the legend, the rest would likely be in downloaded files uploaded to /x/ many years ago that it’s unlikely for anyone to have a copy of, especially with how obscure the story is in the first place. Once again, of all the stories to go missing, of course it’s one of the few that shows some creativity and that has the start of an interesting ARG.
If the person behind the post all those years ago is reading this, my only message for you is please give this another shot. I honestly do think this idea shows some signs of talent, and I think that even from the little I’ve seen you make, you’re already one of the best people in the genre at that time. For that matter, if there is anymore to this story, please let us know, I’d love to know who Trevor is and why the Camerahead took them, just for starters.
As it stands, its unlikely we’ll ever know the tale of the Camerahead, although to end this, I think this post from a Lost Media Wiki user sums up my thoughts perfectly:
We’ve gone from “creepypastas about lost media” to creepypastas BEING lost media. Technology really is amazing.