The internet is this one enormous space where every weirdly specific thing finds its home. There’s no secret there. Like, misleading thumbnails. Yep, you heard it right. Misleading thumbnails you often find on social media are a thing for this Reddit community which goes by the exact same title: Misleading thumbnails.

489k members of this online group are sharing weird, funny, and cool pics that are not always what you think they are. The logic is simple: some Reddit thumbnails cause a unique optical illusion due to their small size and make you go: “hmm… let’s see.”

According to the group’s description, “when you open the images to full size, you're in for a surprise.” So today, we picked some of the most misleading pics that will make you scratch your head before realizing you got bamboozled.

#1

This Hole Right In The Middle Of My Kitchen

This Hole Right In The Middle Of My Kitchen

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Daria Z
Community Member
6 months ago

I can even see the abyss gazing back into me

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#2

Trashy Bride Lets It All Hang Out

Trashy Bride Lets It All Hang Out

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Adam C
Community Member
6 months ago

haha NSFW

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#3

Huge Underwater Iceberg

Huge Underwater Iceberg

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ML
Community Member
6 months ago

Pretty powerful photo

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To find out more about the Misleading Thumbnails subreddit, Bored Panda reached out to their moderator team, who was happy to share their story. The moderator u/pajam said that r/misleadingthumbnails was created by a user named Noot 9 years ago when he was “scrolling through Reddit and came across this thumbnail.”

The creator couldn't imagine this not being some sort of NSFW image, but then when he opened it and saw the full-size image, he realized it was just a baby pig between two other pigs. “So he was misled by the thumbnail, and thought it was a unique experience blending optical illusions with a sort of 'mind-blown' experience.”

And since there was no subreddit dedicated to this, he created r/misleadingthumbnails, which now has 489k members.

#4

Homemade Baguette And Nutella

Homemade Baguette And Nutella

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

A cat fits everywhere.

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#5

Crowd At A Concert

Crowd At A Concert

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Potatogamers2
Community Member
6 months ago

I thought I was going mad because I didn't see the crowd/concert at all and thought it was actually illusion as a carpet but really a crowd..if that makes sense lol

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#6

Man With Curly Hair About To Dive Into The Water

Man With Curly Hair About To Dive Into The Water

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Potatogamers2
Community Member
6 months ago

Hahahaha I thought like OH YEAH HIS HAIR IS FAKE..!! But..what is on his head then..? Hmm? Heh?? Oh..Oooooooohhhh

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But it turns out that the evolution of the subreddit has been “somewhat frustrating,” because “for over a decade, Reddit's default design included thumbnails for every post,” u/pajam explained.

But the new Reddit redesign has made r/misleadingthumbnails way more confusing for new members. “New Reddit has made 'Card View' the default view for new users, thus those users won't see any thumbnails whatsoever unless they actively switch to 'Classic View' or change their settings to use the 'Old Reddit' design.”

As a result, r/misleadingthumbnails attracted a lot of new users who didn’t get the purpose of the subreddit. “They would instead treat it like the plethora of other 'Misleading Images' subreddits (/r/Pareidolia, /r/confusing_perspective, /r/forbiddensnacks, etc.).”

But the moderator said the community stays positive since they still have a lot of redditors who prefer the old Reddit design as “most users who were redditors before the redesign” and “they are passionate users about keeping the subreddit true to its roots.”

#7

My New Eyeglasses Are Blurry

My New Eyeglasses Are Blurry

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MaeRose
Community Member
6 months ago

This one took me a second😅

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#8

Vista Of Jupiter

Vista Of Jupiter

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

NASA just found life on Jupiter! A few giant ducks!

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#9

Giraffes Enjoy A Serengeti Sunset

Giraffes Enjoy A Serengeti Sunset

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Raine Soo
Community Member
6 months ago

This one made me laugh out loud. Well done.

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Today, the subreddit gets an average of 1 to 30 posts a day. “Our content is limited and comes in waves, as it relies on random chance. You never know what images will end up looking different when it gets shrunk down to Reddit's thumbnail size.” However, when it happens, it's a pleasant surprise for everyone, and “we'd love people to share those posts here.”

When it comes to the meaning of “Misleading Thumbnails,” u/pajam explained that it refers to “the experience of scrolling through Reddit, browsing the post titles and thumbnails... then seeing a thumbnail that your brain can't imagine could be anything else besides what it assumes it is looking at.”

But as soon as you click on the post to see the full-size image, you literally get bamboozled. “Your mind gets sorta blown as the image looks entirely different now. Somehow the act of shrinking the image down to the size of a tiny Reddit thumbnail unexpectedly caused a unique optical illusion.”

#10

Train Speeding Down A Old Tunnel

Train Speeding Down A Old Tunnel

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Linda May
Community Member
6 months ago

This is actually so cute

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#11

My Friend Tweeted Me The Lunch Salad She Was About To Eat

My Friend Tweeted Me The Lunch Salad She Was About To Eat

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Raine Soo
Community Member
6 months ago

There is so much green goodness here.

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#12

Delicious Sushi

Delicious Sushi

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

Very fresh sushi, still alive!

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The moderator summed up that this precise experience of “clicking into the post and getting your mind blown, or a few seconds of straight-up confusion, was a unique experience we wanted to capture in our subreddit.”

The moderator further explained that “Old Reddit thumbnails were always a tiny 70 pixels wide, so it wasn't uncommon for the loss of detail and small size to lead to unexpected optical illusions.”

However, even if you don’t use old Reddit on your desktop, you can still choose “Classic View” on new Reddit, or other mobile apps. In this way, “you’ll get similarly sized thumbnails to have the same experience.”

#13

Man Taking Bath With Burnt Corpse

Man Taking Bath With Burnt Corpse

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Daria Z
Community Member
6 months ago

I laughed more than I probably should 😂

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#14

A Bowl Of Spaghetti-O's With A Side Of Avocado

A Bowl Of Spaghetti-O's With A Side Of Avocado

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Lauren Caswell
Community Member
6 months ago

Pizza the hut

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#15

Getting Some Fresh Air

Getting Some Fresh Air

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Candace Fitzpatrick
Community Member
6 months ago

Bwahahaha! This is terrible for so many reasons

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#16

Mark Zuckerberg At Home Sick In Bed

Mark Zuckerberg At Home Sick In Bed

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Lady Perkele
Community Member
6 months ago

He finally showed his real dorm!

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#17

Draw Me Like One Of Your French Girls

Draw Me Like One Of Your French Girls

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

Kate Winslet needs a bit of tan...

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#18

Aww Man, My Glazed Pastries Came Out All Wrong!

Aww Man, My Glazed Pastries Came Out All Wrong!

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Bored Little Panda
Community Member
6 months ago

At first they looked really yummy

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#19

Unfortunate Split In Leather Couch

Unfortunate Split In Leather Couch

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

But it's a boat, right?

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#20

Firewood Splitting Apart

Firewood Splitting Apart

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Seabeast
Community Member
6 months ago

Meerkat coven.

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#21

My Pan Left A Burn Mark On The Sheet

My Pan Left A Burn Mark On The Sheet

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

Perfect camouflage: furry-purry burn mark!

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#22

Crazy Bacterial Growth After Swabbing And Culturing My Work Keyboard

Crazy Bacterial Growth After Swabbing And Culturing My Work Keyboard

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Lauren Caswell
Community Member
6 months ago

Oh so so cute!!!

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#23

My Asshole Cat Always Loves To Sit Over The Stuff I Leave In The Table...

My Asshole Cat Always Loves To Sit Over The Stuff I Leave In The Table...

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Vikram Bedi
Community Member
6 months ago

My annoying hooman ... always leaving stuff on my pedestal.

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#24

Stunning Aerial View Of The Amazon River

Stunning Aerial View Of The Amazon River

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Raine Soo
Community Member
6 months ago

That caterpillar is eating itself a nice tunnel.

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#25

Impressive Splits For A Bride With Very Long Legs

Impressive Splits For A Bride With Very Long Legs

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Adam C
Community Member
6 months ago

Van Jane

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#26

This Giant Antelope Skull I Found In The Desert

This Giant Antelope Skull I Found In The Desert

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Carlos daniel
Community Member
6 months ago

sometimes barks, but it is due to the heat

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#27

Someone Drew A Crab On My Sheet Music

Someone Drew A Crab On My Sheet Music

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CATMONSTER2018
Community Member
6 months ago

lol. very cute

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#28

Dog With Horribly Deformed Nose

Dog With Horribly Deformed Nose

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Lady Perkele
Community Member
6 months ago

Actually 🤭 saw the hamham at the moment!

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#29

An Advanced Elevator System In Japan

An Advanced Elevator System In Japan

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

He wants to be cool!

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#30

Frame From The Matrix (1999) Where A Mouse Cursor Was Accidentally Left In.

Frame From The Matrix (1999) Where A Mouse Cursor Was Accidentally Left In.

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Who? Me?
Community Member
6 months ago

This is the glitch in the matrix everyone is talking about

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#31

The Head Of Great Pharaoh Cleopatra

The Head Of Great Pharaoh Cleopatra

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

We can see her famous nose...

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#32

A Bunch Of Bananas

A Bunch Of Bananas

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Raine Soo
Community Member
6 months ago

They look ripe to me.

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#33

Girl's Mangled Leg Injury

Girl's Mangled Leg Injury

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Bored Little Panda
Community Member
6 months ago

What is it?

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#34

Surfer Rides Rare Double Tube Wave

Surfer Rides Rare Double Tube Wave

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CATMONSTER2018
Community Member
6 months ago

Stunning!

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#35

Microscopic View Of Tweezers Picking Up An Organism

Microscopic View Of Tweezers Picking Up An Organism

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

And yes, these are contrails, condensation trails, not "chemtrails"!

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#36

A Sewing Needle Going Through A Cotton Sheet

A Sewing Needle Going Through A Cotton Sheet

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Audrey the Frog
Community Member
6 months ago

The rocket looks so tiny!

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#37

Cosplayers Headed To Frogcon 2018

Cosplayers Headed To Frogcon 2018

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Bunny Girl
Community Member
6 months ago

Pfft... Frogcon Lol

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#38

Pretty Girl Showing Off Her Homemade Inuit Doll

Pretty Girl Showing Off Her Homemade Inuit Doll

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Bunny Girl
Community Member
6 months ago

Ahhh! Scared me for a moment there

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#39

New McDonald's Chocolate Sundae

New McDonald's Chocolate Sundae

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Carlos daniel
Community Member
6 months ago

take the sauce.. good bye!

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#40

Throwing A Dog Out Of A Helicopter

Throwing A Dog Out Of A Helicopter

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Bored Little Panda
Community Member
6 months ago

I can't see anything else!!!! What is actually going on?

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#41

This Massive Ethernet Hub

This Massive Ethernet Hub

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Bunny Girl
Community Member
6 months ago

At first I didn't know... until I scrolled down

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#42

Molten Lava As It Flows Through Rocks

Molten Lava As It Flows Through Rocks

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CATMONSTER2018
Community Member
6 months ago

Beautiful

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#43

Ducks Swimming On The Lake

Ducks Swimming On The Lake

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
6 months ago

Poor bike owners!

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#44

My Pokémoncard Collection.

My Pokémoncard Collection.

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Ray Heap
Community Member
6 months ago

St John´s co cathedral in Valletta on the lovely island of Malta.

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#45

Those Chickens Look So Happy!

Those Chickens Look So Happy!

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Benjamin Kowal
Community Member
6 months ago

Why does he need so much milk?

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#46

Tom Cruise On The Set Of Top Gun (1985)

Tom Cruise On The Set Of Top Gun (1985)

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Raine Soo
Community Member
6 months ago

LOL This one is hilarious!

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#47

Uncooked Bacon

Uncooked Bacon

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ravina nimje
Community Member
6 months ago

Vegan bacon

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#48

My Brand New Motherboard

My Brand New Motherboard

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Bunny Girl
Community Member
6 months ago

Heh, took me a while

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#49

This Massive Watermelon Seed

This Massive Watermelon Seed

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CATMONSTER2018
Community Member
6 months ago

Boop... i love birds. parakeets and lovebird are my favorite tho... burb

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#50

Explicit Poster For Gayclub

Explicit Poster For Gayclub

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Bobbie
Community Member
6 months ago

Entrada VIP... 😏

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Note: this post originally had 71 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.