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#1 GHIceman

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 02:51 AM

Hey folks,

I was spending some time getting re-aquainted with Ghostvillage today and I thought I'd throw these questions out to you guys:

What do you think that the paranormal community is doing right? On the other hand, what do you think that the paranormal community is botching up? What is there too much of an emphasis on, and what is there too little of an emphasis on?

Try and think objectively about this one. I know that everyone looks at their own group and says, "well, we're doing it the right way", but I think everyone should look at the community as a whole and give their opinion on this. I know that I, personally, have some strong opinions about the state of the community, but I'd like to see what everyone else thinks. What better place to ask than, well, a paranormal community?
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#2 LadyWolf

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 05:06 PM

I think the "community" is getting plenty of press lately with TV shows, movies (1408), etc. Good or bad it's just fluff. The community itself needs to clean up some of the "hunters" that go out and actually damage the reputation of people who do this for real. People who destroy sites, wreak havoc and cause problems so that other legitimate people can't go investigate really just screw it up for the bunch. The Ghosthunters TV show seems well put together and there are new books out so I think overall it's doing well in the professional realm.
Suz"Fear conscripts its own armies, takes its own prisoners."

#3 UnScene

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 10:36 PM

Hey folks,

I was spending some time getting re-aquainted with Ghostvillage today and I thought I'd throw these questions out to you guys:

What do you think that the paranormal community is doing right? On the other hand, what do you think that the paranormal community is botching up? What is there too much of an emphasis on, and what is there too little of an emphasis on?

Try and think objectively about this one. I know that everyone looks at their own group and says, "well, we're doing it the right way", but I think everyone should look at the community as a whole and give their opinion on this. I know that I, personally, have some strong opinions about the state of the community, but I'd like to see what everyone else thinks. What better place to ask than, well, a paranormal community?


GH,
I would like to know what your opinions are.

#4 GHIceman

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Posted 22 November 2007 - 03:02 AM

UnScene,

Nice name. Thought about changing mine to Yorick Brown.

As far as my opinions go, I'd be delighted to share, though I'm sure many will be less than pleased to hear it. This will be a long one. I'll try and be delicate. Here goes nothing.


I've been involved in the paranormal for a good ten years now. I was raised in a very religious family (my father is a 5th generation Baptist minister) where the occult was a subject that was not only looked down upon, but it was not even discussed. Interestingly enough, it has only recently come to light that my family has a history of interesting characters dating far back into out lineage. Everything from witches, to psychics, to an uncle who could "speak with demons". This is important to remember, and I'll get back to it.

As I gradually became more and more interested in the things less explained, partially due to the obsession a few friends and I had with bigfoot and the like, we eventually ended up forming the paranormal group that has lasted to this year. This group has been a large part of my life, and I've sacrificed a lot to keep it going as long as it has despite any number of growing wounds. I've lost friends, dealt with repercussions from people associating my "dabbling" to my fathers profession, and taken hefty portions of ridicule from the "professionals". It was through this group that I learned everything that I know today, and why I believe the things that I do as strongly as I do. I never learned anything from watching other groups except for how to look like a blue collar jerkoff looking for a reason to be special, to be different.

Now that the preface is over, I'll get to my opinions.

First off, I don't really think that the paranormal community is doing anything right. End of story there.

As to what they're doing wrong? Everything. The fact that we have a "paranormal community" is a sad state of affairs. This shows that there's a definite segregation between one group of people and everyone else. Essentially : "Crazies VS. The World". Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that everyone involved in the "community" is insane. Just a majority of them.

The paranormal realm is both humorous and sad in the way that it sucks people in, and it's usually the same type of person. The ability to suddenly say "I can speak/feel/hear/see dead people" or "I can see auras" or anything of the like is something that cannot be proven, and has not been proven yet, by any kind of strict science. This affords select individuals with the opportunity to be special. Individuals who have never proven themselves in any way shape or form to be a productive member of society. People who have low self esteem. People who are unattractive. People who are coming to a point where they realize that their lives are half over and they've never achieved anything. People with no integrity. The kind of people that would sell you out if it meant a moment in the spotlight. These people make up a vast majority of the "community" because this gives them the opportunity to do something that can make them stand out, get attention, act like they know what they're talking about, be special for awhile in their own little group instead of the real world.

I have had the unfortunate situation of watching good friends fall into that void. I have seen one friend in particular who I considered to be one of my best, fall into a crowd run by a very convincing man who was at the center of one of the worlds most famous "hauntings". This man was a great fan of taking impressionable people, people like the ones I just listed, and churning them out into brainwashed new agers. This friend of mine, obsessed with the "father figure" that he gained, slowly slipped further and further into the murky waters of the occult, blinded by the feelings of importance and acceptance that he gained from his new father. It's the same technique used by cults all over: Find the weak and unaccepted, accept them and give them something to strive to. It doesn't matter what it is. Love them, nurture them, and they will obey.

This friend of mine began to be harrassed by demons/spirits/whatever-you-believe constantly but they still didn't get the hint. They continued toying with the metaphysical, demonology, ouija, even casting out spirits - a pretty ridiculous thing for anyone who is possessed/oppressed by them to even try because it will only make things worse. This person soon became entrenched in darker passtimes like joining bondage clubs and blatant pedophilia. At this point, these things didn't even seem dark to him at all. Eventually, he even tried to take his own life. This is what the community does if you let it. An extreme case, yes, but one that's been personal for me to deal with. It accepts the impressionable, and turns them into something unrecognizable. These people are then unleashed and become the heads of the "paranormal elite". People who couldn't be further from sane. And people let these people into their homes with the hopes that they can fix their problems when it couldn't be further from the truth.

Then these "heads" simply profit off of the impressionable. People see them on TV, at "lectures", buy their books, etc. and they simpy buy into it. In this field, if you call yourself a professional, you pretty much are. There are no credentials, as I saw you asking for. They don't exist. If you go through years of schooling overseas to become a parapsychologist, I commend you, because then you'll see that parapsychology is NOTHING like this. My girlfriend recently spoke with the head of the American Institute of Parapsychology and he flat out said that this "Community" is ruining their field of research. It gives them a bad name from which they may never recover.

Remember what I said about my relatives? Well, when I further inquired about their "gifts" and why no one has ever talked about them the only reply that I got was :

"They all went crazy."



Honestly, I could go on and on about this, but I'm getting sick to my stomache.

Edited by GHIceman, 22 November 2007 - 03:04 AM.

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#5 UnScene

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Posted 22 November 2007 - 07:57 AM

UnScene,

Nice name. Thought about changing mine to Yorick Brown.

As far as my opinions go, I'd be delighted to share, though I'm sure many will be less than pleased to hear it. This will be a long one. I'll try and be delicate. Here goes nothing.


I've been involved in the paranormal for a good ten years now. I was raised in a very religious family (my father is a 5th generation Baptist minister) where the occult was a subject that was not only looked down upon, but it was not even discussed. Interestingly enough, it has only recently come to light that my family has a history of interesting characters dating far back into out lineage. Everything from witches, to psychics, to an uncle who could "speak with demons". This is important to remember, and I'll get back to it.

As I gradually became more and more interested in the things less explained, partially due to the obsession a few friends and I had with bigfoot and the like, we eventually ended up forming the paranormal group that has lasted to this year. This group has been a large part of my life, and I've sacrificed a lot to keep it going as long as it has despite any number of growing wounds. I've lost friends, dealt with repercussions from people associating my "dabbling" to my fathers profession, and taken hefty portions of ridicule from the "professionals". It was through this group that I learned everything that I know today, and why I believe the things that I do as strongly as I do. I never learned anything from watching other groups except for how to look like a blue collar jerkoff looking for a reason to be special, to be different.

Now that the preface is over, I'll get to my opinions.

First off, I don't really think that the paranormal community is doing anything right. End of story there.

As to what they're doing wrong? Everything. The fact that we have a "paranormal community" is a sad state of affairs. This shows that there's a definite segregation between one group of people and everyone else. Essentially : "Crazies VS. The World". Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that everyone involved in the "community" is insane. Just a majority of them.

The paranormal realm is both humorous and sad in the way that it sucks people in, and it's usually the same type of person. The ability to suddenly say "I can speak/feel/hear/see dead people" or "I can see auras" or anything of the like is something that cannot be proven, and has not been proven yet, by any kind of strict science. This affords select individuals with the opportunity to be special. Individuals who have never proven themselves in any way shape or form to be a productive member of society. People who have low self esteem. People who are unattractive. People who are coming to a point where they realize that their lives are half over and they've never achieved anything. People with no integrity. The kind of people that would sell you out if it meant a moment in the spotlight. These people make up a vast majority of the "community" because this gives them the opportunity to do something that can make them stand out, get attention, act like they know what they're talking about, be special for awhile in their own little group instead of the real world.

I have had the unfortunate situation of watching good friends fall into that void. I have seen one friend in particular who I considered to be one of my best, fall into a crowd run by a very convincing man who was at the center of one of the worlds most famous "hauntings". This man was a great fan of taking impressionable people, people like the ones I just listed, and churning them out into brainwashed new agers. This friend of mine, obsessed with the "father figure" that he gained, slowly slipped further and further into the murky waters of the occult, blinded by the feelings of importance and acceptance that he gained from his new father. It's the same technique used by cults all over: Find the weak and unaccepted, accept them and give them something to strive to. It doesn't matter what it is. Love them, nurture them, and they will obey.

This friend of mine began to be harrassed by demons/spirits/whatever-you-believe constantly but they still didn't get the hint. They continued toying with the metaphysical, demonology, ouija, even casting out spirits - a pretty ridiculous thing for anyone who is possessed/oppressed by them to even try because it will only make things worse. This person soon became entrenched in darker passtimes like joining bondage clubs and blatant pedophilia. At this point, these things didn't even seem dark to him at all. Eventually, he even tried to take his own life. This is what the community does if you let it. An extreme case, yes, but one that's been personal for me to deal with. It accepts the impressionable, and turns them into something unrecognizable. These people are then unleashed and become the heads of the "paranormal elite". People who couldn't be further from sane. And people let these people into their homes with the hopes that they can fix their problems when it couldn't be further from the truth.

Then these "heads" simply profit off of the impressionable. People see them on TV, at "lectures", buy their books, etc. and they simpy buy into it. In this field, if you call yourself a professional, you pretty much are. There are no credentials, as I saw you asking for. They don't exist. If you go through years of schooling overseas to become a parapsychologist, I commend you, because then you'll see that parapsychology is NOTHING like this. My girlfriend recently spoke with the head of the American Institute of Parapsychology and he flat out said that this "Community" is ruining their field of research. It gives them a bad name from which they may never recover.

Remember what I said about my relatives? Well, when I further inquired about their "gifts" and why no one has ever talked about them the only reply that I got was :

"They all went crazy."



Honestly, I could go on and on about this, but I'm getting sick to my stomache.


Dear G.H.
Thank you for your input, I am impressed. As far as my name, ( the name of my latest story) I have always tried to stay in the background of things, and be un seen.
You speak very well, and would be interested in taking this further between us, I think we could learn a lot.
You admitted you were raised in a "religious" home, wern't we all? I
I have generations of "sensitives" and it was an acepted and normal practice for me. My personal opnion is the largest "cult" of them all are the so called leaders of the "Christian" groups. If anyone can brainwash, they have a heavy handle on that one. In my research for my writing, I have compiled a list of comparrisons of the Judeo Christian belief's and the paranormal. Some are very simple and obvious. Seeing aura's was called a halo, levatation was removing a large rock if I recall, and the biggie was reserection, wouldn't that also be concidered returning of a "spirit"? . And then, don't forget that speaking in tongue's was a possession. It's really sad to think your family called those members "crazy". I do feel I need to take issue with your response that indicated you felt anyone who is involved was predestined because of a weak character, and has questionable stability.
The basic's of founded religion was one of fear. If they could not "control" then they would lose. What is everyone so afraid of? I would much quicker trust someone who has "been here, done seen that" ( a loving caring spirit) than someone who has only learned the right thing by reading the appropriate books.
As far as someone calling themselves a professional in the paranormal, that question was what brought me to this site in the first place. I can not believe there is no one closer to us, than over seas, who does not have access to information that would enlighten us all.
To me, as with any religion, it all boils down to faith. I have my belief's that I feel are founded on aged proven senitiments with great respect. I know anyone could say the same, and we could get into a major debate and go on forever. (although i would love to, i have to get the turkey in the oven.)
Thank you for your time, I appreciate a good chat.
I have no intentions of trying to change anyone's opnion's or beliefs, just asking for the same respect anyone who is a "believer" of any group that is supportive would ask for.
P.S., I know how frustrating and disheartning it is to loose a friend, and even family members to something you can see is "a bad thing for them". I have lost a sister, and a girlfriend, to the christian cults, and it has changed their lives considerably, and not for the good.
Have a happy turkey day.
Latter

#6 AbbeyGal

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Posted 22 November 2007 - 10:15 AM

I will agree that ego is a huge problem in the community. However, for all the complaining about psychics in this regard (and most of the psychics I've dealt with do not fall into that attention seeking category anyway), I think ego is an unfortunate aspect of human nature in general. It certainly isn't limited to either psychics or even just the paranormal community. Have you ever been involved in any other organized group? Trust me, there's a lot of people out there no matter what community they're involved in who feel a need to be special and will do annoying things to make themselves feel that way.

But as far as the paranormal community goes, here's our specific downfalls:

On the individual level, it is exasperating to see so many investigators who won't make an honest effort to debunk their evidence. It makes the community as a whole look silly when someone keeps presenting every orb that shows up in their pictures as ghosts while refusing to even consider that, yeah, it could just be dust. It's one thing to make a newbie mistake, and a whole other problem to refuse to consider that they might be wrong about something.

On a group level, it disgusts me to see them breaking into places to investigate them. The worst case I've heard of was where someone even worked as a volunteer at a cemetery office in order to steal paperwork from them to post on their website about where the grave of a notorious criminal was. It had been hidden by request of the deceased's family. How low can one be? To add insult to injury, they had the nerve to present it as if the cemetery folks were the bad guys for keeping this information from the world and that they were heroes for getting the word out. Sickening. And we wonder why the people in charge of cemeteries have such a poor view of ghost hunters. Just because you can do something in the pursuit of of paranormal research does not make it either legal or ethical.

Territorialism is another big problem. Instead of cooperating with each other and sharing information, many groups won't communicate with other groups at all. Some act like they own a site just because they've investigated it a few times. The worst is when they actively try to ruin another group's reputation to cut down the "competition" for access to sites.

My final gripe is the pursuit of fame. It seems like everyone and his brother is trying for as much media coverage as possible or to get their own tv show. Getting media coverage is not inherently a bad thing. However, some groups seem to focus more on that than they do on actual research. Those also seem to be the worst about bashing other groups. Again, it just makes the community as a whole look like a bunch of pathetic fame seekers. The media itself is also problematic to deal with. I have heard countless tales of people being on the local news or even big cable network series who have been made to look stupid by the way they were presented.

As far as what we are doing right goes, there is usually something to balance out each of my complaints.

I am impressed by how hard many investigators do try to debunk their evidence and work within the frame of the scientific method. These folks are inevitably willing to share their findings, which helps everyone else as well.

Likewise, there are groups out there who do network and share information. Working with them is wonderful. Of course, Ghost Village is great for that. I also have to give kudos to people like Todd Bates of Haunted Voices Radio who actively encourage cooperation within the community.

More groups are getting vocal about speaking out against trespassing and vandalism. This gets the word out to folks who aren't inherently jerks but who just never stopped to consider that yeah, someone does own that property and it causes them problems when people break in.

Media coverage can also be a great medium for sharing information with the community. I listen to a lot of paranormal radio shows and am grateful to the people who gave me a lot of good ideas about how to be a better investigator.

So, it's a mixed bag. I do think that while the amount of idiocy hasn't necessarily decreased, the amount of positive stuff in the community has increased over the past few years.

Edited by AbbeyGal, 22 November 2007 - 10:17 AM.


#7 Jennie

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 12:05 AM

This is one of the most interesting threads that I've ever read.
Iceman, I'm sorry about your friend. That is a hard thing to watch, a friend, someone you love being led in a terrible and frightening direction.
I agree with everything you've said 100%.
The paranormal groups, when I started out 15 years ago, where few and far between and they were really interested in finding out the truth. Today, it's a completely different story. There is a group on every corner willing to take in any person who wants to feel "special" and convincing that person, that they are capable of wondrous powers, just to feed their own agenda and wallet. If I hear the words "demon haunting" one more time, I think I'll vomit.
I think that it is important for every person to judge for themselves and not to let someone else tell you what to think.
No one really knows anything on this subject and anyone who says they "know" is full of crap.
I'll stop there, because I don't want to stir anything up.
This is an awesome post and everyone should read it.
Thank you Iceman!
Wishing you the best and a Happy Thanksgiving!!
Jennie

#8 UnScene

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 08:44 AM

I will agree that ego is a huge problem in the community. However, for all the complaining about psychics in this regard (and most of the psychics I've dealt with do not fall into that attention seeking category anyway), I think ego is an unfortunate aspect of human nature in general. It certainly isn't limited to either psychics or even just the paranormal community. Have you ever been involved in any other organized group? Trust me, there's a lot of people out there no matter what community they're involved in who feel a need to be special and will do annoying things to make themselves feel that way.

But as far as the paranormal community goes, here's our specific downfalls:

On the individual level, it is exasperating to see so many investigators who won't make an honest effort to debunk their evidence. It makes the community as a whole look silly when someone keeps presenting every orb that shows up in their pictures as ghosts while refusing to even consider that, yeah, it could just be dust. It's one thing to make a newbie mistake, and a whole other problem to refuse to consider that they might be wrong about something.

On a group level, it disgusts me to see them breaking into places to investigate them. The worst case I've heard of was where someone even worked as a volunteer at a cemetery office in order to steal paperwork from them to post on their website about where the grave of a notorious criminal was. It had been hidden by request of the deceased's family. How low can one be? To add insult to injury, they had the nerve to present it as if the cemetery folks were the bad guys for keeping this information from the world and that they were heroes for getting the word out. Sickening. And we wonder why the people in charge of cemeteries have such a poor view of ghost hunters. Just because you can do something in the pursuit of of paranormal research does not make it either legal or ethical.

Territorialism is another big problem. Instead of cooperating with each other and sharing information, many groups won't communicate with other groups at all. Some act like they own a site just because they've investigated it a few times. The worst is when they actively try to ruin another group's reputation to cut down the "competition" for access to sites.

My final gripe is the pursuit of fame. It seems like everyone and his brother is trying for as much media coverage as possible or to get their own tv show. Getting media coverage is not inherently a bad thing. However, some groups seem to focus more on that than they do on actual research. Those also seem to be the worst about bashing other groups. Again, it just makes the community as a whole look like a bunch of pathetic fame seekers. The media itself is also problematic to deal with. I have heard countless tales of people being on the local news or even big cable network series who have been made to look stupid by the way they were presented.

As far as what we are doing right goes, there is usually something to balance out each of my complaints.

I am impressed by how hard many investigators do try to debunk their evidence and work within the frame of the scientific method. These folks are inevitably willing to share their findings, which helps everyone else as well.

Likewise, there are groups out there who do network and share information. Working with them is wonderful. Of course, Ghost Village is great for that. I also have to give kudos to people like Todd Bates of Haunted Voices Radio who actively encourage cooperation within the community.

More groups are getting vocal about speaking out against trespassing and vandalism. This gets the word out to folks who aren't inherently jerks but who just never stopped to consider that yeah, someone does own that property and it causes them problems when people break in.

Media coverage can also be a great medium for sharing information with the community. I listen to a lot of paranormal radio shows and am grateful to the people who gave me a lot of good ideas about how to be a better investigator.

So, it's a mixed bag. I do think that while the amount of idiocy hasn't necessarily decreased, the amount of positive stuff in the community has increased over the past few years.


AbbyGal,
Very nice point's,
I'm not sure how we went from accrediation and creditablity to Ego, but I will agree EGO drives most people. I have been involved with several groups around my community, and have had different reactions. some have welcomed new comers with enthusiasm, and some won't give me the time of day until they feel I have proven myself that I am worthy of their time. Now who has the ego problem?
So much involved within this field is left up to interpatation, it is hard to have clear lines. And who are the one's that draw those line's in the first place.
As far as being respectful of other's property, I would think that goes under the heading of "respect" and common sence. And, notwithstanding, the law. Why would these people who are breaking into other's property have that right, just because they are seeking information. We know we can't break into the library after hours just because we are seeking information on the latest leftover "turkey reciept".
And, maybe it's just me, but I feel the public's general "interest" in the paranormal has increased in the last 10 years. And with sincerity. The general reactions are not quite so "eyes rolling in the general direction of heaven" quick. Are people looking for something more in their lives? Are they finally begining to believe that maybe there is more to it than they allowed themselves to believe before? Is it the Media that has brought it out in the open more? (I'm thinking here of Sylvia Browne. Sorry) but she does have a "faitfull" following.
I am very impressed with the people in this site, and hope I am not overstepping my bounds, or offending anyone with my "big keyboard", but I really am enjoying this.
Thank you.

#9 AbbeyGal

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 01:00 PM

I'm not sure how we went from accrediation and creditablity to Ego, but I will agree EGO drives most people.

? I was responding to the post about people claiming to be psychic because they need to feel special. If that's not a matter of ego, I don't know what is. If there was a previous post about accreditation, it went completely past me. Accreditation is a whole 'nother can of worms. Don't get me started. :wave:

I have been involved with several groups around my community, and have had different reactions. some have welcomed new comers with enthusiasm, and some won't give me the time of day until they feel I have proven myself that I am worthy of their time.

That is a pet peeve of mine. Over the years, I've seen a lot of posts fiercely reprimanding newbies for even considering starting their own groups without having been a part of an established group first. I agree that that is the ideal. However, when I first decided to join a group instead of just researching on my own, I contacted all of the local groups in the medium sized city I live in about joining them. I did not get a single response. Not one. And this was before GhostHunters started, so it's unlikely that they were inundated with requests. I finally ended up having to join a group 2 hours away. I can understand that it isn't feasable to make everyone who asks a member, but if people aren't willing to at least give some guidance to newbies, they have no right to complain that newbies are clueless twits ruining it for everyone.

#10 GHIceman

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 11:34 PM

I'm really enjoying this thread now.

There were two things that I noticed while catching up on the replies that I figured I would toss my two cents at.

First, it seems that the general consensus is that tresspassing is bad. Why?! Sure, we can get into legality and moral complications, but I think that you would be hard pressed to find a "paranormal investigator" that hasn't tresspassed at least once or twice. From my experience, some of the best activity that we've ever gotten have been in places that are deemed illegal to visit without permission. Permission that no doubt would be denied for any number of reasons.

For the length of my time in this "biz" I've subscribed to an oath that urban explorers have been swearing to for years:

"Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but photos."

Really, who are you hurting when no one even knows that you were there to begin with? Unfortunately, this is where a lot of the complications come in. A lot of ghost hunting groups, unfortunately a lot of younger ones, aren't very good at following that saying or being smart about sneaking around places. I'll leave the topic with this : If you are doing it safely, respecting the property, and you're willing to pay the consequences if and when you get nabbed for doing it, go to town.

Secondly, the idea that people in groups have the audacity to give newbies a hard time for starting their own groups without having been a part of an "established" group first is completely ridiculous. How did they start out?

This comes back to my little rant about the "community", which looks to be more of a "family". I don't mean that in a warm welcoming way as much as I do in a mafiaso way. If a new group pops up that hasn't been "properly trained" they get ripped to shreds by the big guys. So basically, what they're saying is that if you don't follow their protocols and standards that you can suck a duck. Would someone mind telling me how that's progressive for the field? An unbelievable system of incest is promoted. Everyone has to be connected and part of the same family, swallowing the propaganda and regurgitating it to others, or they are essentially blacklisted for being different. Change is not a bad thing. Do you know how much progress science would have made if we all believed and accepted the same things without trying to disprove them constantly? None. I mean, that's the beauty of science, right? Adaptability and change? For a group of people who try so hard to make everyone believe that they are "scientific", they sure freak out when people aren't falling into line.

I think that in order to be saved, we need as many new and different groups to crop up as possible. Groups that will not be made to conform to any kind of "standard" set by some invisible panel of "professionals". Only then will new ideas start to be passed along and the chain of the "family" churning out brainwashed investigators can finally stop. Luckily, we have a generation of kids coming up who have been raised on this stuff, ready to take over and make some kind of change....hopefully. I just cross my fingers that they're smart enough to know not to buy into the hype.
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#11 GHIceman

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 11:46 PM

And one more thing..

Screw these groups giving us a set of standards. What right do any of these guys have to tell anyone else how to do anything? Thats complete BS. I haven't seen anyone come up with unquestionable scientific evidence that ghosts/demons/spirts exist, and neither has the rest of the world, so they obviously haven't made much progress yet. We still have blurry photographs of fog (and lets not get into the newer "orb" garbage..), crackling white noise that could very well be stray radio signals, and a bunch of "special" people that claim that they can interact with ghosts. Evidence-wise, we're exactly where we were 100 years ago, so conforming to ANYTHING at this point is, well, retarded.

Get out there, experiment, question authority, and make mistakes. Learn by doing. It's the only ay we're going to get out of this mess.
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#12 AbbeyGal

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Posted 24 November 2007 - 10:00 AM

You are preaching to the choir in my case about standards. I don't think that some mentoring for newbies is necessarily a bad thing, though. The big concern is to get them to think about debunking instead of blindly accepting everything as evidence of the paranormal. Granted, there are so many resources online now that if someone truly wants to learn, they don't have to look far to find resources. The trick is that not everyone who gets into ghost hunting thinks it through even enough to do that kind of research. Mentoring might help point them in the right direction. Of course, some people get into it as a lark and will never bother with debunking, anyway.

I can see your point about if someone truly isn't harming anything by trespassing, then there's no problem. However, after working for a historic preservation organization for a few years, I'm not convinced that it isn't a little more complicated than that. A group in my area gained entrance without permission from the owner to one of our restoration projects. There is no reason to believe that they themselves did any physical harm to the building. However, they were very proud of themselves for having gotten into this restricted access building, put their findings on the web, and went as far as to brag in a newspaper article about their experiences there. That in turn encouraged thrill seekers to break into the building. At that time, the owner could not afford proper security for the place. Again, even if all the thrill seekers did was to cut through the locks so that they could get in, they sure as heck didn't lock it back up, and that left the building vulnerable to people who like to destroy things just for the fun of it. Basically the first group shooting off their mouths about being there resulted in a downward spiral the ended up in literally over $10,000 worth of damage being done to the place. So, in addition to your advice about "not leaving footprints", I would say, do not under any circumstances put your evidence about it in a public place unless you are careful to list the site as an "unidentified location" and do not leave any clues that would allow folks to figure out where it is.

#13 AbbeyGal

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Posted 24 November 2007 - 07:27 PM

In case I gave the wrong impression, I still think that trespassing is wrong regardless of whether it causes any damage. It's illegal, and it makes the paranormal research community look bad a as a whole, which in turn it makes it harder for us to get our feet in the door even going the legitimate route.

#14 GHIceman

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Posted 25 November 2007 - 01:10 AM

No, I understood where you were headed with that. That's a completely respectable opinion.

On the other hand, we just celebrated Thanksgiving, a celebration of thanks to our forefathers for tresspassing on the native's land and bringing forth this country in which we're sitting on our butts having this conversation about tresspassing right now.
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#15 LadyWolf

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Posted 25 November 2007 - 02:43 AM

I don't think that trespassing is the issue but the damage that is done by those who trespass and leave more than footprints and take more than pictures - which, by the way, I agree with whole-heartedly.

It's the jerks that screw it up for everyone else. People who tear up a place or leave trash, act like it's a party, etc. People who exaggerate, who seek only the fame, people who don't do research and background information and then take every little thing as fact without double checking, triple checking, etc. I love the research side and whenever I'm working it's my first goal to prove that what happened didn't happen or that there's a reasonable explaination. Once I've "gone there" and proved that something is real, and sometimes it is, then my job turns to proving what it was.
Suz"Fear conscripts its own armies, takes its own prisoners."




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