The following has nothing at all to do with Bernie Madoff, the white collar criminal.

But it has everything to do with new discoveries and they way they seem to haunt you, appearing everywhere the minute new knowledge has you taking note.


The Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon describes when something you've just seen, experienced, or learned about suddenly seems to appear everywhere you look. It's otherwise known as the "recency illusion" or "frequency illusion."


The whole thing is really an ever-growing, vicious spiral of brain activity.

When your brain learns something knew it subconsciously decides to look for that thing, and uses selective attention to do so. Whenever that selective attention successfully finds the thing it seeks, you experience confirmation bias and irrationally conclude that the thing occurs more frequently than it ever has. Really, you've just become better at seeking it.

Nevertheless, that irrational conclusion of greater frequency serves to jazz up your brain, so you look even harder.

Aaaaand paranoia.

u/oditogre asked, "What have you been experiencing [the Baader-Meinhof Phenonemon] with, lately?"

So Much for Trend-Settin’

This always happens to me when i buy a new coat or when i bought my car. All of a sudden I'm noticing them everywhere.

u/redpatchedsox

Impressive to Pull Out at Parties, Though

I could swear I've read the word 'Liverpudlian' (somebody / thing from Liverpool) like 6 times this weekend and never before then.

u/oditogre

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It's About Time, Friend

I watched the Princess Bride for the first time recently. I'm now seeing references to it everywhere.

It Does Not Mean What it Says it Means

The word "gaslighting." I learned what it meant couple of weeks back and the amount of times I see that word everyday is insane.

u/ww3000

Gahhhh Inception

I literally explained what this phenomenon was to my husband when I was experiencing it yesterday. And then I said that I'd probably start hearing about the phenomenon itself.

And......here it is.

u/Miles2GoBefore1Sleep

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Too Many Babies, Not Enough Earth!

Pregnant women. I'm pregnant and now everyone is pregnant.

u/sprkleyes420

It is Real. It is Doing Stuff. 

Connecticut. One day i was in the car and i was like "why don't i ever hear any new stories that mention Connecticut? I'm pretty sure it's made up."

I even googled Connecticut just to make sure it is a state. Now i see Connecticut everywhere in the news.

u/lilhorso

Not Baader-Meinhof. Just Excellent, Relevant Children's Programming.

Man, in grade school I used to constantly learn about a new subject only to go home and have the exact same subject come up in a Magic School Bus episode.

u/Wanderson90

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"Where's My New Jersey Plates Log!"

My wife has started noticing that the letter L is the fourth position on an NJ license plate. I have no idea what to make of this.

u/malex930

One Single Time Would've Sucked. Several is the Pits. 

I keep seeing and hearing about a two-headed goose.

Saw a little statue at the store, heard a random story from someone at the next table over, saw one in a book, etc.. there have been about 6 encounters so far.

u/bingbong1234

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