Who Do Gettysburg Ghost Gals Think They’re Kidding?

“Every team back in the 90s was male-dominated. You didn’t find any teams that were female-run” claims Brigid Goode, a member of the Gettysburg Ghost Gals in an interview with Irish Central. In the article it is claimed she has ‘been doing paranormal investigations for decades and founded the Gettysburg Ghost Gals in 2012.’ In an MTV article Goode also claimed that “during investigations we get better results than the men do.” Continue reading

Glasgow Shopping Centre Calls In… Paranormal Experts?

What happens when you ask a group of ghost hunters to visit a location at which people have reported seeing ghostly apparitions? Well, long-time visitors to this blog will know that the answer is that they usually find ghosts. Does that mean you’re haunted? No… Continue reading

You’re Probably Not The Scientific Ghost Researcher You Think You Are

Many people involved in paranormal research think that they are scientific when they’re actually using dodgy science instead. This makes them no better than those people who used biased methods of spirit communication, like ouija boards, psychics or dowsing rods even though they probably think quite the opposite.

Just over a month ago I wrote a piece exploring how methodologies set apart paranormal researchers from ghost hunters. I wrote that ‘a ghost hunter is someone who literally hunts or searches for ghosts and doesn’t seem to realise (or care) that this means they are using a completely biased methodology because they use tools and methods that assist in their quest to prove that they are encountering a ghost.’ Continue reading

Ghost Hunters vs. Paranormal Investigators

Confirmation bias, according to its Wikipedia entry, is ‘the tendency to search for, interpret, or recall information in a way that confirms one’s beliefs or hypotheses’ and we’re all prone to this bias even when we think we’re not. In fact I think it’s fair to say that we’re really good at thinking we’re not biased when we actually are. This is why scientists introduce controls to their studies and get their peers to review and replicate their research to ensure that their results are not biased or flawed. Continue reading

Ghost Hunting Goes Wrong Because We’re Human

I used to believe that ghosts were real and that I communicated with them while on ghost investigations and I can remember how powerful that made me feel. As the founder of the paranormal team I would often be the one who led the seances or the glass divination or table tipping… I’d be the one who called out to see if I could encourage a reaction from the ghosts that we were convinced were present.  When the glass moved in response to questions or when something happened that we thought was significant it would make me feel a real buzz to have instigated that response. Continue reading

Bringing Bad Science to the Classroom

I recently held a workshop in my local library for children aged 10 years+ that was marketed as ‘How to be a Ghost Buster’. I taught the attendees how to spot faked ghost photos, misidentified ghost photos, and what a scientific approach to odd activity looked like. I taught them how dodgy human memory is, and we often see meaning where there is none. None of what I told them was personal opinion and was all based on research and studies. I answered their questions as objectively as I could and yet I was still terrified that I might say or do the wrong thing to a potentially vulnerable audience. Continue reading