The Global Consciousness Project

What is the nature of Global Consciousness?

David Bowie Dies January 10 2016

Bowie released his final studio album Blackstar on 8 January 2016, his 69th birthday. Bowie died on 10 January 2016, and his official Facebook page posted the message "Jan. 10, 2016 – David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18-month battle with cancer.

Specific Hypothesis and Results

The GCP hypothesis specified 24 hours (UTC day) beginning a few hours before he passed, according to friends. This includes the announcement on social media, which immediately spread around the world. The result is Chisquare 86369 on 86400 df, for p = 0.539 and Z = -0.097.


The following graph is a visual display of the statistical result. It shows the second-by-second accumulation of small deviations of the data from what’s expected. Our prediction is that deviations will tend to be positive, and if this is so, the jagged line will tend to go upward. If the endpoint is positive, this is evidence for the general hypothesis and adds to the bottom line. If the endpoint is outside the smooth curve showing 0.05 probability, the deviation is nominally significant. If the trend of the cumulative deviation is downward, this is evidence against the hypothesis, and is subtracted from the bottom line. For more detail on how to interpret the results, see The Science and related pages, as well as the standard caveat below.

Cumulative Deviation during event

Standard caveat

It is important to keep in mind that we have only a tiny statistical effect, so that it is always hard to distinguish signal from noise. This means that every success might be largely driven by chance, and every null might include a real signal overwhelmed by noise. In the long run, a real effect can be identified only by patiently accumulating replications of similar analyses.