Fitting the pattern, the “we hike deep into the woods”, “cult”, and “abandoned” are fabrications to create mystery and drama.
He admits early in the video that the cult thing is phony: his “extensive research” turned up nothing about the cult (direct reference). Also, nothing he came across in the homes would be cult-like material.
As for the hike deep into in the woods, yet more phony drama. The mansion is about 150 feet past the end of Blackburn Road!
It’s not abandoned. It was renovated 15 years ago, the property is clearly being mowed, and he found electricity on in multiple buildings.
Remove the fabrications and the silly, mysterious tone, and you’re simply seeing a property that may be hard to sell.
Here’s some drone videos of the property from a few years ago:
I like figuring out true locations behind videos or photos. Urban explorers let me hone this skill.
A note: These explorers are actors. They make entertainment products, not documentaries. Their general pattern is to paint a pseudo-abandoned building with phony drama, nostalgia, or mystery. These fuel emotions that color a walk-through of the building.
Part of their act is obscuring location, adding to the mystery. This means we get fun puzzles to solve.
I’ve nailed the location of the set of one of Carter Banks’s (a.k.a. BigBankz) videos:
This video’s backstory is a doctor who had a famous-actress wife from Europe, a nasty divorce, severe back pain, and financial troubles, leading to a mysterious house abandonment.
Carter left some key clues.
(Licensing note: Some screen captures from the video are below. Their use fall under the fair use doctrine. An example of fair use is use is use of others’ works for commentary and criticism.)
First, you have these pill bottles, which confirm a last name of Dulik:
A phone number is exposed with a different angle on the second pill bottle:
Great, we know this probably a Dulik from Liberty, New York.
Carter also gave us a drone shot, helping us identify the house’s outline.
After a little Googling, I located an Ivan F. Dulik from Liberty, NY. His wife is Consuela Moravkova. Her biography contradicts some things Carter said. Consuela is Czech, not west European, and the “famous actress” in Czechoslovakia theory is stretching the truth. She appears to have only had minor acting roles until her 1979 retirement.
Why is the house abandoned? First, look at the aerial of the site, where you can also confirm the outline:
The red pin is on the explored house. Adjacent are destroyed or condemned buildings. A condemned building is what shows behind the house’s chimney:
While the explored house is a detached, single-family home, it’s still part of the condominium complex. That is apparent from a property map from the county, which has no separate parcel for that house:
The likely explanation isn’t a mysterious abandonment. Rather, it’s that the house had to be abandoned because it was no longer safe.
Part of the safety issue appears to be asbestos. A recent proposal by the Town of Fallsburg, to use eminent domain to acquire and redevelop the property, was canceled apparently due to concerns about asbestos-abatement costs.
Finally, the house is not abandoned! For one, it has electricity: the oven and microwave clocks are on. I wonder how many lights would have turned on had Carter flipped switches? (Spookiness is part of the act, so of course they cannot use the lights!) The house isn’t the dusty, rotted mess of something abandoned for years in a humid continental climate that gets 52 inches of rain each year and cold winters. While not maintained well, it is being minimally maintained by someone.
Wait, there’s more! Carter’s buddy Steve Ronin was there and also created a video:
Steve shared a valuable clue, confirming the owner’s identity:
That and another document he found show dates after the massive fire. If the entire complex was condemned, and this house is part of the complex, I am unclear how anyone could reside in it. My guess is Ivan visited the house occasionally to sort out affairs, possibly concluding with an optimistic 2015 attempt to sell it.
This may be Ivan:
And the Japan theory? It probably comes from a photo book of what is likely a medical conference Ivan attended in Japan:
I found property records. Ivan and Consuela still co-own the property. While the actor suggested that Ivan may tried to sell the place for $595,000 almost 10 years ago, the county now says it is worth around $40,000. You can see the property records by looking up property 11.-1-39.02./0101 at Sullivan County’s property-search site. (Interestingly, a search on 11.-1-39 turns up all owners in the condemned condo complex. That backs up other information I found that shows that resolution to the catastrophic fire is absent even 11 years later!)
The property was probably abandoned because it’s part of a condemned condo complex. I’ll bet that Ivan and his wife were prolific shoppers. There’s so much suggestive evidence of that in the house. If so, the things that were left behind were mostly clutter, redundant possessions, or things that were easier to replace than to pack up and move.
This property still has some open questions. They are mundane. But the location puzzle is solved. That’s the fun game!
If I hit Continue (see two screenshots above), I pass through some perfunctory dialogs:
Continuing, copyright tips that are inapplicable to someone who, like me, puts his original creation on Facebook:
Finally, I get to do something:
Selecting Submit dispute then Continue brings more perfunctory dialogs:
Now I can submit the dispute. I filled out the Submit dispute dialog:
Pressing Submit nearly always brings me to a final dialog, saying that my dispute was accepted and more information that is irrelevant to people uploading their original creation:
Now the original support message says the audio was restored:
This is not an isolated occurrence. It has been happening since June 28. Here’s a screenshot of my Facebook support inbox:
This usually works but not always. I am incapable of shoving the thief off of one of my June videos. Every dispute attempt on that video ends in an error:
Is this an example of Facebook providing even more aid and comfort to intellectual-property thieves?
This experience concerns me on several levels:
Facebook allows thieves to use its system to steal rights to others’ intellectual property.
Facebook does not tell me which part of my original creation is triggering the thief’s false claim.
Facebook does not identify the thief to me.
Facebook’s interface appears to be designed to assist the thieves, using error messages to thwart intellectual-property owners.
At what point will Facebook suspend my account due to too many intellectual-property issues?
Here’s the same video, on YouTube (no fake copyright violations!):
I challenge you to spot a copyright violation in it.
Technical notes that may be inconsequential:
The video that Facebook sees is the broadcasted video, which is what the GoPro sends to Facebook through my phone’s hotspot. The above YouTube video is straight off the GoPro’s SD card. Having artifacts of running through a hotspot with variable speed, such as occasional skips or glitches, the broadcasted video will be lower quality than the SD-card-sourced YouTube video.
My videos are usually much longer. The one that is the subject of this post is short because the camera turned itself off during my ride. That happens once or twice a month in hot weather, possibly due to overheating. The battery was at 77% when I restarted the camera.
On occasion, when I ride by someone who has a speaker going, my video may pick up a brief recording of whatever music is playing. This is again unusual and is a brief recording further harmed by a lot of wind noise. These possible incidental recordings have never before triggered a copyright notice, so I don’t think they explain this issue. I once inadvertently included an incidental recording into another video–not bike-ride related–and I remember Facebook identifying the copyright holder, unlike what happens in this incident.
By declining to set the record straight, Apache is misinforming a lot of users, as the OpenOffice brand appears to have parity with LibreOffice:
Apache needs to declare OpenOffice dead, focus attention elsewhere, and redirect people to LibreOffice. Why is Apache not doing this?
P.S., Yes, I know, OpenOffice is not technically “dead”. Some users still cling to it for legacy reasons, and there could be a case for some maintenance releases. That doesn’t excuse Apache’s refusal to acknowledge reality, which is certainly misleading users.