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Nightmares Fear Factory is a haunted house attraction located in Niagara Falls, Canada. Since the early 2000s, they have photographed the reactions of their visitors as they go through the venue to capture their candid fear. In the past few years, collections of these photos have gone viral every October.
Nightmares Fear Factory established their first website, nightmares-niagra.com in October 1998. As early as July 2002, the site has hosted a gallery of candid photos (shown below) taken inside the attraction as people are walking through.
On October 12th, 2005, blogger Felix Jung posted a number of photos from Nightmares Fear Factory’s official site on his blog Avoision. In April 2006, a poster on Trip Advisor inquired whether or not you can buy the pictures at the end, which was confirmed by another poster. YouTuber TheFearGuy began uploading videos of participants while inside the house (shown below, left) and compilations of the day’s best photos (shown below, right) in June 2009.
In October 2010, Nightmares Fear Factory launched a Flickr account to host their photos, posting more than 1,400 images and video as of October 2013. However, the photos did not go viral until October 6th, 2011 when BuzzFeed posted a series of photos from the Flickr stream depicting frightened bros. Over the next several days, additional photos from the stream were featured on Hypervocal, the Daily Dot, WebProNews, Avoision, Acid Cow, Trend Hunter and Funny or Die. On October 11th, Something Awful posted a series of photoshopped versions of the photos (shown below). Later that month, New York Times writer Kerri MacDonald documented her own trip through the attraction, sharing her photos from the site.
On September 18th, 2012, a number of the photos were compiled into an Imgur album and submitted to the /r/Funny subreddit where it hit the front page with 2,508 points overall, 16,527 upvotes and 2,033 comments prior to being archived. That October, Nightmares Fear Factory photos were featured on BuzzFeed, Business Insider, the Huffington Post, My Modern Met, Twisted Sifter, Something Awful and Neatorama. Additionally, Wired spoke with the attraction’s social media and marketing coordinator Vee Popat, who would not divulge what event inside the house is associated with the camera flash. As of October 2013, photos from this year have already appeared on The FW, the Huffington Post, CNN, MSN Now, The Frisky and The Weather Channel.
The Daily Dot – Haunted house turns real-life horror into online humor
Funny or Die – 30 Pictures of People Freaking Out at a Haunted House
My Modern Met – More Hilariously Frightened Faces From a Haunted House
Something Awful = Scurred faces: Nightmares Fear Factory is at it again.
The Huffington Post – Nightmares Fear Factory Returns With More Freaked Out Faces (PHOTOS)
The Weather Channel – Nightmares Fear Factory: Terrified Reactions at Haunted House (PHOTOS)