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Full of Shit: TIME Magazine and Fact or Faked

Pardon the title’s French, but I have to call ’em like I see them. And, folks, I see a bunch of shit. Okay, maybe that’s being too harsh. What I actually see is some super shitty investigative work.

MY PROBLEM WITH FACT OR FAKED

I have been really torn about this show from the get go. I was willing to give it a chance, even though I find most of the epiosdes boring as hell and I’m always thankful I’ve DVR’d them so I can fast forward to the findings part.

The one redeeming quality was I saw it as a neat way to get people fired up about science. I liked that they put theories to the test and concocted experiments to test their theories about how and why something may have been faked. I can see applying this sort of thing in classrooms to get kids more interested and enthused about science, problem solving, logical thinking, etc.

However, I’ve had a problem with the team from the get go. They all seem like perfectly nice people, but Ben Hansen’s all of what, 12? He was a FBI agent for all of a minute maybe? (Okay, according to his bio he served as an investigator at the state and federal levels for a total of six years –or, as I see it, a minute– before he became a Systems Analyst.) 

Worse, he became an FBI agent because of the X-Files. The following is taken straight from his Fact or Faked bio:

Early in his youth, Ben developed a fascination with UFOs and secret government projects. Ben has been looking for the real-life X-Files since he was a child and decided he would dedicate his career to investigations.

The “early fascination with UFOs and secret government projects” caught my eye even before I got to the second sentence mentioning X-Files. It screamed “This kid watched a lot of X-Files, maybe an episode too many” to me.

I’d probably have had less of an issue with all of this if the show’s producers didn’t insist on labeling him the “Former FBI Agent” and didn’t try to make the show so X-Files-esque.

Jael provides the sex appeal to the male viewers. Austin (a.k.a. the other baby) is supposedly the team’s “Stunt Expert” (God, how I hate how people abuse that word), yet his bio mentions no stunt experience, only that he’s a freaking personal fitness trainer.

But I can’t bag on the whole Fact or Faked cast. Bill Murphy seems like the team’s most experienced paranormal investigative member. Why he’s not at the helm I have no idea. (Well, I do. Because he apparently wasn’t a former FBI agent and how would the show’s producers spin their X-File take then?)

I also can’t knock on Chi-Lan or Devin too much. Their real-life experience/careers compliment their positions on the show.

WHY I’M DONE WITH FACT OR FAKED

But after last night’s episode, I’m done with Fact or Faked for good. I didn’t even watch the whole thing. The second Chi-Lan made a big deal about how the Whaley House is listed as an official haunted place by the Deparment of Congress I stopped the episode, deleted it, and then went and deleted the series from my series recording list. It’s no longer worthy of my viewing time.

Why I am being so harsh?

BECAUSE THERE IS NO DEPARTMENT OF CONGRESS HAUNTED PLACES LIST!

I can’t emphasize that enough.

Someone didn’t do their homework very carefully. There are some bad reporters out there not doing their diligence. There’s even worse editors slacking on their fact checking.

Whoever does the research for the Fact or Faked team clearly misinformed Chi-Lan. (Or, if she did her own research, she didn’t do it thoroughly enough.) But a source I’d never expect to spread such misinformation also did so big time. 

TIME wrote an article listing the Top 10 Haunted Places. They also erroneously referenced the U.S. Commerce Department (for their Whaley House listing) and the U.S. Department of Commerce (for their Winchester House listing) as having listed these places on their “official” haunted places list.

[INSERT LOUD BUZZER HERE]

Wrong! Impossible! Why? For the same reason I emphasized above.

THERE IS NO DEPARTMENT OF CONGRESS HAUNTED PLACES LIST!

Sorry Fact or Faked. I wanted to like you. I liked the concept and what you attempt to do, but in the end I haven’t been impressed. And after this blunder I just outright think you’re all entertainment and completely full of shit. How on earth could you have missed the biggest fake of all?

Courtney Mroch
Courtney Mroch, otherwise known as HJ's Ambassador of Dark and Paranormal Tourism, is an author, traveler, and ghost enthusiast. When she's not writing, jaunting, or planning her next trip, it's a safe bet you'll find her on a tennis court somewhere. She currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.
http://www.courtneymroch.com

54 thoughts on “Full of Shit: TIME Magazine and Fact or Faked

  1. http://autumnforestghosthunter.blogspot.com/2011/04/fact-or-faked-reviewed-season-ender.html

    You’ll absolutely love my review above that I just did of the show on Thursday. I am in agreement with you and with these young puppies who are, oh so cute, but clueless. I am not impressed. I wanted real seasoned folks (all shapes, ages and sizes) who are opinionated and intelligent and not so freaking Osmond-ish. I adore Ben and he’s a smart guy–I did an over 3-hour interview one on one with him and he’s very brilliant, but they need to let him produce the show so he can make serious changes. Yeah, the Whaley House is no more haunted than my apartment bathroom after a really bad Mexican meal. Great post!

  2. I’m going to render a guess that Bill Murphy isn’t at the helm because, qualified as he might be, he isn’t as handsome or as charismatic as Ben Hansen…who I really wish would come interrogate me, I’d be a good little prisoner, I swear…though he might have to use handcuffs….sigh… But I digress. There are some holes in the show yes. I’m not sure who’s responsible for them.

    But like your beginning thoughts, I like how they put stuff to the test…like you said, it’s rather promoting the use of “science, problem solving, logical thinking, etc.” I honestly didn’t even pick up on that statement Chi Lan made about a Department of Congress “official haunted place list”. I just really don’t pay much attention after the case selection until they get to the actual experiments & showing the findings.

    There have been episodes that I’ve enjoyed more than others. There is room for improvement. But overall I think it’s kinda fun and interesting. Destination Truth is still my favorite though. 😉

  3. I’ve been watching the syfymercials for some time. They are little more than infomercials with a syfy wrapper. I wonder about the money flow? How much did it cost Whaley for the FoF “investigation”?

  4. I’m continually amazed by the number of people who swear something is gospel because they ‘saw it on TV’! I don’t bother with shows who advertise their ‘experts’ or their ‘expertise’ when they a) can’t spell correctly and b) get facts wrong in their promos!! And ‘photogenic’ does NOT equal ‘qualified’, ‘credible’ or even ‘interesting’!

  5. OMG! I love your last line. PERFECT! That’s, sadly, what it seems to be all about. Who’s the best looking. {sigh}

  6. HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAH! You’re terrible, Crystal! I love it, though! You’re so bad!

    DT is about one of the only ones I watch now. The rest have pissed me off somehow and driven me to this point where I give up on them entirely.

    THANKS for the chuckle with your comment!

  7. WHAT? I’m shocked! I knew you were buddies with Ben so I’m stunned to find you agreeing with me!!!! Oh, and you cracked me up with your last line. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAA

  8. Certainly, this is not the first major error that FoF has made that someone has caught. They discussed the recent Lake Lure Inn ghost photograph but described the Inn as being in Michigan (it’s a good thing they didn’t plan a trip there). I was writing about the Inn at the time and even Tweeted to them that they made a mistake. While the error about the “Official Haunted Places List” is major, it’s also repeated in many much more trusted sources.

    Personally, I happen to like the show, even if they do occasionally make mistakes. In our line of work (or pleasure, whatever the case may be), we do need to make sure that these errors are duly noted as such. I like the message of the show; that there is a good deal of “paranormal phenomena” that really is just abnormal phenomena or outright trickery; but I will certainly be more vigilant of their errors.

    On the other hand, I’m fond of the idea of an “official” list of haunted places. I’ve seen some locations that advertise themselves as “certified haunted” though usually that comes from a small organization I’m not familiar with. Even if there was, are there any groups with enough of a national presence to even consider such a thing? It’s an interesting thought.

  9. Where is the Lake Lure Inn? That’s funny they misidentified it’s location! (Wait…I’m writing this and thinking I read your post and loved it. Now I’ll have to go back and check it out again.)

    Anyway…YES, TIME stunned me by being one of those much more trusted sources that repeated the mistake. Heck, even I might have but I was curious if there was such a list why I didn’t know about it. So when a guest blogger wrote about something that mentioned it I hopped on looking it up. That’s how I found out. I easily could’ve been among those spreading the rumors. (Something I try to avoid if at all possible.)

    I like you’re thinking about getting all the groups together to create a list. But then I see a lot of fighting about how do you classify a place as haunted? And who will govern the group, etc… BUT, it’s something that could happen. And should really. Like you’re thinking! THANKS for leaving such a great, thoughtful, insightful comment.

  10. I agree with everything said about this show. It’s cool on the scientific level but the whole 3!…2!…1!…RELEASE THE KRACKEN! count down is super cheesy and annoying. I watched a few episodes before and I was just bored with it. Chi Lan probably saw this and bounced for something more interesting! But I agree with you on Jael, she’s just eye candy on the show and likes it that way. However, she probably tries to sound intelligent because I noticed in one episode, the two guys she was with were talking about how they would begin the investigation. And all Jael was doing was repeating everything they were saying as if she was completely lost and didn’t have not one darn thing to contribute to the case!

  11. I really want to like this show, but ultimately I think they just don’t have the right team. I mean, they’re all good looking, but truly experienced? Um…I don’t buy it. Very hard for me to watch something being sold as “real” when clearly these folks are actor-wannabes. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your comment and thoughts.

  12. I found out what you meant by the department of congress thing not existing. It’s actually called the department of commerce haunted locations list. Try it on google

  13. Also, I just want to add, THERE IS NO “EXPERIENCED’ PARANORMAL INVESTIGATOR!Seeing as how no one has ever been able to prove that any of these things exist, you can’t be an expert since you don’t know if it’s real! I guess you’d like to see an @$$hole like Bill Birnes, right? Or some other douche from ancient aliens or ghost hunters

  14. AGREED, Donald. Boy, do I agree with you. There are people who are perhaps experienced in investigating and techniques, but there are no experts in the field. Expertise maybe, but not expert.

  15. You’re such a freakin idiot. never post your opinion again…anywhere…ever. First of all she probably confused what she meant to say in regards to the U.S. Department of Commerce which was probably taken off the tusconcitizen and just because it was “certified” people misconstrue this information because it is in fact a business in which people pay to get in. So said business must comply with certain structural codes like public safety etc. So this is only half right but not in the sense it’s in any way haunted. Their reporter is “suppose to be” Jael and I don’t know the fuss about this bitch being all sexy shes freakin ugly with scraggly ass hair I just wanna yell at her to brush it she’s such a f’n scrub. So there you go, if you don’t like the show that’s fine..you’re such an idiot for thinking anything on TV was going to be 100% real so it amazes me every time someone like you QQ’s and blogs about it.

  16. Go get ’em Courts! Never watched this but all the so-called “news” and “investigative” shows need to go back to journalism school and quit putting just pretty faces on TV. Aren’t there enough people around who wouldn’t know a real fact even if it glowed in the dark?

  17. I have always wondered why a former “special FBI agent” is so baby faced. Their using the scientific method is a plus for this show. However, I do see them testing things that have already been proven to be hoaxes, so what’s the point?

  18. The peopleon fact or faked really need to read a book and learn to fact check. They use incorrect information so often it hurts. I can’t watch them anymore either.

  19. That’s what I liked about the concept for the show, Jenny. That they were trying to apply some scientific methods, but…they fall short a lot of times too in not quite applying a good scientific approach. I wanted to like the show, I really did, but it’s too cheeky for me. I appreciate you stopping by and sharing your thoughts like this. Well you and also Jessica and Nalaeyak and everyone else who weighed in with thoughts.

  20. FOF goes out to disprove a paranormal case. to disprove it thay go out and spend no telling how much money and if thay can come up with what thay call the same thing then thay call it fake.So if thay spent1000 dollars on materal then so i guess the people who sent in the home recording spent 1000 dollars to make and send them the recording so that makes everybody but them are fakers

  21. I don’t know if I’d be as harsh as Billy was but there is some definite corniness to this show (although I still watch it). Agreed the team’s credentials are a little inflated but what actually gets me is the manner of which they portray the investigations and as if they don’t already know every detail before they get there. Like how someone will say, “Ya know guys, I think I have something that will work exactly how we need”…….and then he drives up in a tractor or something. It’s like why try to make it like you’re doing you’re “investigating” while you’re there? It’s bad enough you ALWAYS get the answer on the 3rd try or the 3rd test. The first attempt at testing a theory is always the stupidest and a waste of time. The second has a little more credibility and then the third try puts the nail in the coffin. Can you say cheesy? Oh and let’s not forget the videos they all bring in the beginning. They all have an over acted reaction to the videos like they haven’t seen them before and then someone jumps up and says, “well actually guys if you look right here at frame 364 out of the 57037 frames of the video you’ll notice some pixelation vindictive with CGI”. Yea………….and you just HAPPEN to spot that…… Again, cheesy.

    Personally I miss Chi-Lan, she was hot…..way hotter than Jael. Although I do think Ben has a thing for Jael, does anybody else think that? He’s always being nice to her while no neveimd to anybody else. And they always go together on just about every trip. Lol…… I also think its funny how Ben always wants to “lock in” the videos he brought while shooting down everybody else’s.. He’ll be like, “…I have a video about a bug on a wall and I think we should lock it in right now”……lol. I wish this was more popular of a show because I can totally see SNL doing a parody of Ben doing that, lol.

  22. Thanks for your comments, TJ. Great insights. I don’t watch it all anymore, so I don’t know about a lot of these things. Except for them always finding the answer on try 3 and needing only 3 tries to be able to debunk something. But I never noticed how Ben also locks his right in. That is funny. And SNL or Southpark…I’d like to see either do a parody. Very glad you stopped by with your thoughts. Thanks!

  23. It’s not the Department of COMMERCE (the correct sp for commerce btw) either, Jason. It’s often referenced as that too, but it’s not the Dept of Commerce or Congress or any other dept. It doesn’t exist. It’s a myth that keeps getting perpetuated because unlike me, other people HAVEN’T done their research. You’re welcome for me correcting you.

  24. I too believe Ben and Jael have something going on. Ben Asks Jael to come with him EVERY time. Hmmmm….a little fishy there..

  25. Hi,

    I realize your post is a bit old but I wanted to make a comment about this. TJ touched on the surface of this, but didn’t quite hit it. I think what your review has missed is that the show itself is fiction. There are many paranormal shows that also fall into the reality television category, but this one appears to be scripted paranormal with actors in roles.

    When I first started watching this I believed it was just a bunch of investigators and then it started to smell a little fishy. My first hint was Jael. They bill her as a journalist but she is in fact just a model. She was on Destination Truth as well, but they never made any claims about her credentials. She was basically there to make the show a little more pretty. Same here. She’s the girl in the bikini.

    The girls on this show are the only ones with wiki pages, in fact, because they are all models by trade. In the credits they may be called journalist, photographer, or neurosurgeon… but their previous works show otherwise. I believe all members of the cast are actors. Ben is not former FBI – they just figured a former FBI agent would make a good host for the show. The show was probably pitched as “what if Agent Mulder quit the FBI to host a reality show about uncovering the truth behind paranormal sightings?”

    There is something real going on in the show. They take real mysteries and their team figures out, many times, what is going on. But unlike Myth Busters, the brains behind the solution are off screen while their ideas are scripted by writers and then acted out by the cast. Does it take anything away from the show? Not really. I mean, Bryan Cranston doesn’t really teach chemistry or cook meth but Breaking Bad is still the best thing on TV.

    Still, the show is pretty boring.

  26. Hi JR! Thanks for taking the time to leave your comments. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one to find this show boring…or faked. I enjoyed reading your thoughts. Thanks again for leaving them.

  27. My brother and I had been very excited about FoF, as we are firm believers in things paranormal, and also appreciate when something is debunked or “proven” — I put that in quotations simply because I believe that even in the hardest evidence, even if a spirit came for a visit to Walmart, there’d be those who disbelief and shout down those who do.

    In any event, the more we watched, the clearer it became that at least the dialogue was scripted. Reading further, we began to be skeptical of the investigators themselves, only finally being confirmed that they are all actors except perhaps Bill Murphy — though Jael may have some actual interest in the field, and she did indeed do journalism after being a model and actor.

    What’s sad is that the investigations are real. That is, real investigators were sent in and then the actors go in to appeal to a younger crowd, but the investigations are real. Maybe night investigations are legit, or perhaps they do the experiments as shown but have been decided beforehand by real investigators, but I digress … The true sad thing is that by doing an equivalent of a professional lip sync, it not only discredits the show but discredits any true investigator.

    SyFy could have easily produced the show with the real investigators/ scientists and so on, but felt that it wouldn’t appeal to the younger demographic, or other such “reason.” As others have mentioned, if Bill was in charge, there probably would have been the detractors who’d say that the show would be “better” if Ben was in the forefront.

    At the very least, they could have the cast interact with real professionals, and not only learn themselves but show how something can be debunked or otherwise, a la a paranormal more adult “Electric Company.” Obviously, not every investigation would be non-stop excitement, for example, a night investigation may only provide a few minutes of workable footage, but instead of dramatizing some of the good parts, as it were, then move on to another case — don’t get stuck on having to have exactly two cases.

    Ryan Buell of Paranormal State had been under pressure by A&E to do similar “FoF” tactics, telling him they wanted him to “have” a romantic relationship to develop on screen with one of his female team members. He refused. One reason he terminated the program was, as some suggest, that even if A&E didn’t try to exploit him and his team, is that he saw how the show could discredit his work instead of help it, and wasn’t going to allow that to happen (any further).

    My brother and I would like to continue watching FoF, as the investigations can be insightful (when done right), but knowing the players in sight are indeed players, really hurts. SyFy shows us that they don’t care about their audience, or even providing answers to the unknown or unsure, but just to exploit those mysteries and anyone involved, or interested, in them.

    One last thing, as for the term “Experienced Paranormal Investigator” it is unfair to denounce it simply because one does not believe true evidence or proof has been found. Again, even if that person would indeed believe if someone brought about something in a “King King” exhibit, a person who has studied paranormal occurrences, cryptids, and so on for years should not have their work so easily dismissed. Especially when that work can also disprove things superstitious or classify as something grounded in known science. After all, at one time or another something may have been dismissed as fiction rather than scientific evidence in human history but has since been shown otherwise. More so, to so easily dismiss and discount any unexplained findings as complete fiction with no chance otherwise is sad in itself, not because it may be small minded, but to go around in such a world without any wonder than what is at face value would seem rather grey and dull. Yes, this earth has so much awesomeness to explore and revel in, but thinking that there may be even more is just icing on the cake. 🙂

  28. Hey Craig! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your very thorough and awesome insights. I very much got a kick out of reading from someone who seems to have liked FoF as much as I started out liking it. But whereas I got totally turned off, you still seem to give it a chance. That’s pretty cool of you. I don’t have that much patience. And I’m not sure if I denounced anyone who touts themselves as an “experienced” paranormal investigator. I didn’t re-read my article or comments, so if I did, I sure didn’t mean to use that word (“experienced”). I’m fine with someone being experienced. I know a lot of experienced investigators. They’ve put their time in and have come up with some interesting hits. But as for expert? That’s the word that bothers me when people use that. There’s no tests or other measurements of expertness in the paranormal field, because there are no ghosts caught yet. It’s kind of like expert wildlife handlers. They’ve got credentials, have taken certain courses, put in the time…they’ve earned an expert status. Also key is the fact chimps exist and they’ve had practice with them. Ghosts are not like that. If you get what I mean? Ghosts still are more fiction than fact. Don’t get me wrong. Everyday paranormal groups gather more and more interesting things, such as EVPs and what not, but no one can still make a ghost appear on demand or contain one so…until that happens and people are trained with equipment and techniques to wrangle ghosts, there are no experts. But there ARE people experienced in trying. I don’t mean to take that away from anyone.

    I sure do thank you again for stopping by. Very much enjoyed reading your comment.

  29. I was interested in the show after hearing the name and grabbing a few episodes. Sadly, after the first episode I am pretty much done with it. The first one with the ghost car was quite good, but the UFO “investigation” was just sad. They made a few poor attempts, a single pane of glass, only one angle attempted and the wrong laser colour? Man… The balloons might have worked if they let them go higher, but really…. lightbulbs on a wire? Wow…and after that didn’t really work, “Well….lets just film the sky”.
    They have a few interesting sights, but I didn’t see any actual uncut “back and forth” movements and then all of a sudden it’s “definately some sort of paranormal phenomenon. Man……

    Any good shows based on the paranormal out there, or any shows (even web based) where real debunking goes on?

    Cheers

  30. I don’t understand why you are so upset about them commenting on this Haunted List. If I wrote a research paper, and quoted Time Magazine (a reliable source for information, recognized by everyone) then you could not fail my paper based off the fact that I was misinformed through my research findings. So there is not list, they are not the first to be bamboozled by this rumor, nor will they be the last. Chill out. Though I must agree about the terrible investigating.

  31. Dan, I’m upset because it’s irresponsible reporting, and, yes, if I was a teacher and found out you didn’t check your facts, your damn well right I’d fail your paper. Journalism isn’t just about writing. There’s a responsibility that comes with imparting information, first and foremost to be accurate and correct. Misinformation is, in my mind, akin to a sin. Spreading it is an abomination. It’s not to be taken lightly.

  32. In regards to the original post you are as stupid as the cast on the show excluding bill. Austin with his retarded face and willy wonka slave skin colour needs to stay away from the spray tanning salon jael is hot and stupid ben is a moron and that dork with the glasses needs to get bullied in some elementary school playground. Chi lan whatever no comment. So when it comes down to it you need to get a life and stop bashing your peoples you’re no different then them except you arent on tv getting a paycheck. As for the list of confirmed haunted places there isn’t one but you can get books that talk about places where people have experienced unknown paranormal phenomena if you are so interested you’d be inclined to go visit some and publish your findings instead of your bullshit ranting.

  33. Ps destination truth is fake as shit too yet you for some reason like it and think its more credible. I’ll tell you straight as a child I used to see spirits also known as jinn in some cultures that aren’t actually ghosts at all but beings walking in a different plain of existence this why people think they are floating when they actually aren’t at all. What i saw as a kid was no white blurry apparition but more like shadows(silhouettes) child size running up and down the hallway in the apartment I grew up in I used to see them when laying on the couch watching tv with my father but haven’t seen them since then so who knows where or what they(it) are(is). I’ve seen them so my word if advice is this more often you find what you’re looking for when you’re not looking for it.

  34. Courtney. Thanks for your input on Ben! I have worked with several federal, state and local law enforcement investigators, and Ben Hansen’s background has always struck me a ‘fishy’. He NEVER says how long he worked at the FBI; he always lumps his total employment together. He never specifies his area of investigation with the Bureau, whether he did counterterrorism, white collar crime, etc. ‘Former FBI Agents’ I have met are, at the very least, able to say the area worked in. When asked about ‘weirdest cases’ or any cases he took part in, he always uses some version of ‘it’s classified’ or it’s an ongoing case. BULLCRAP! He could at least tell folks about the 7 foot naked leprechaun who stalked J-Lo across 14 states! Also, he does like to tell of how the X-Files inspired his career choice. I’m pretty sure anyone who said the X-Files and government cover-ups were his guiding lights would be tossed from the pool of applicants or cadets/trainees (regardless of their physical or scholastic attributes). MAYBE HE IS LEGIT— if so, but where are the former colleagues with engaging anecdotes? If he was an agent, it still in no ways qualifies him to lead a group of paranormal anything!
    As for the rest of the team, the fact that Larry was replaced screams ‘focus-group’! I mean Devin is a PRODUCER, and Larry was bland, but he understood the things he talked about. Austin fills some Hollywood equation. If they needed a stuntman they could call to the union…they could even order a ‘pretty one’. As for Jael (and by extension Lanisha), I notice that mostly females dislike her. Maybe she’s not a journalist and Lanisha is the model who tried to sue Bob Barker. Jael traveled the world with Josh Gates, supposedly as a researcher/producer, but she contributed no more than being a Spanish translator/eye candy (wink-wink, giggle). Maybe she turned to ‘Big Ben’ because she tired of getting sand in her, socks? Because let’s face it, even with the over-the-top goofiness, DT has contributed quite a lot crytozoologic literature. FoF is nowhere near DT in contributing to the body of scientific knowledge. Still, in fairness to Jael, look at MSNBC, TV Guide or The Weather Channel; the main requirement for their female journalists isn’t wit or intellect. The numerous law suits against broadcasters by aging female anchors and broadcast journalists support this view.
    I earned a PhD from a major university. I discovered FoF because a major car accident (which resulted in multiple back, neck, rib & pelvis fractures and internal injuries) forced my early retirement as a university professor. Before being sidelined I was primary the researcher on numerous projects that also enabled me to author articles in numerous refereed scientific journals. I’M PRETTY SURE that makes me ‘an expert’ on what is/isn’t a scientific process. As I watch the investigations of the paranormal my frustration grows because of what passes for scientific. Several people have suggested FOF follow the scientific model…no it doesn’t. None of them do, they can’t really. Being PARANORMAL, there is no established set of theories based on previous investigations. There are video and audio clips of something undefined or unknown and not defined by any field of study—that is, other than Bigfoot. DT gathered DNA that has been found to be previously unclassified. That DNA can be retested, examined or assessed by other researchers, therefore Josh added to science. Were they disciplined? No, not very. Were they silly? At times. Were they entertaining? Apparently! So respectfully, the level of scientific discipline within the FoF program is essentially irrelevant when assessing the ‘Whaley Ghost House’ or a Florida UFO. Just don’t fib about your work experience and ‘expert’ qualifications.

  35. Dear Dr. J:

    O…M…G!!!!! THANK YOU x100 for taking the time to leave this comment. I thought I was the only one who was seeing all that you wrote about in your comments. (Well, then you included other stuff I hadn’t even considered.) But this made me feel so comforted and not alone. I also VERY MUCH respect your authority on true Scientific Method and that you agree that, no, none of these paranormal shows really follow it…or could, given the parameters of what they’re trying to measure. I’m sure we’d have very interesting discussions about types of investigations to set up. I very much loved reading your comment. Like I said, I often feel alone lately in this train of thought. So nice to meet a like-minded individual.

    Court

  36. This is the worst critical blog I have read on the Internet. The blogger sounds like she is in Jr. High. What difference does it make that Ben Hansen was an X Files fan as a youth and whether that is what influenced him to go into the Criminal Investigation field? The fact that he has completed a degree in Criminology as well as has had actual field experience (even one year of FBI Field Experience is commendable) is credibility enough. This blogger has not given us any supporting statements as to her credibility and expertise in anything, much less in giving an official opinion. It is obvious that anything that doesn’t have gratuitous explosions every few minutes and a remedial comic book plot line is not considered entertainment by this blogger. And the fact that the motivation for the blogger’s coup d’état against Fact or Faked is an insignificant statement given by the Photography Expert, Chi-Lan Lieu, who made the same error as, and was most likely was quoting, Time Magazine (an Established and Reputable Source, unlike this Blog) is laughable at best. I think this Blogger needs ten more years of growing up during which time she should practice reading something more informative than Seventeen Magazine, for example the New York Times or the Washington Post, before she presumes to post her ill-conceived and poorly formulated thoughts again.

    BEN

  37. All I can say nicely, Courtney, is I disagree. Fact or Faked is an awesome show, these people are intelligent and know what they’re talking about. And Ben Hansen worked to help people-victims, mind you- in and out of the FBI. You don’t know him, and I’m sick of hearing people putting him down. He’s an amazing person, and gives a lot for his fans and everybody who’s willing to listen. So respect him!! And respect the rest of the FOF team. Ben risked his life to help others and he deserves to be recognized and respected for his efforts everyday. So thank you 🙂

  38. Hey Anony, thanks for stopping by to share your opinion. I respect that you defend & respect Ben and FoF like you do. I know I never take kindly to when people don’t like shows I like either. I will admit that I did like the first few episodes. I liked that they were trying to bring some scientific method to the process of trying to prove or disprove claims. Then this one thing about the government list that doesn’t exist that they cited happened, it rubbed me wrong, and, well…here’s this post that has brought us together. If you read any of the other comments you know you’re not alone. Lots of people agree with you and have reamed me. I’m still waiting for someone to defend TIME Magazine with the same tenacity as is generated for Ben and FoF though… 😉

  39. I truly hope you read this post since it has been several years but, let me go ahead and expose Hansen for the liar he is:

    Hansen was a CANDIDATE for the position of Special Agent, which means he was offered a slot to go to the Academy. Nothing more, nothing less. But repeatedly failed fitness tests and never completed or graduated from the FBI Academy.

    In order to be an Agent, you must have SUCCESSFULLY passed the FBI Academy, and more importantly obtained credentials and a badge, which authorizes you to conduct investigations and cements your title as an Agent. Otherwise, claiming you are/were a federal agent can be constituted as a crime, prosecutable in federal court.

    This is so easily verifiable, contact the FBI office in DC or better yet, the Salt Lake City FBI office, which he processed out of and spent time doing menial work while complaining, and waiting to go to the Academy. He was never officially an FBI employee, much less a Special Agent. He was merely a candidate and thus has never investigated or had the authority to investigate ANY form of federal crimes. He wasn’t even a SECRETARY for the FBI, from all the people I’ve talked to who worked with him, REAL FBI employees, they all said the same thing. He was lazy, unmotivated, strange, and entitled. He was NEVER a Special Agent. Not even for a DAY.

    Also, don’t let him fool you by saying he was a “criminal investigator” for the FBI, such a title doesn’t exist and never has.

    The FBI has previously ordered Hansen to stop referring to himself as a Special Agent, and he continues to do so.

    The fact that he was the nerve to claim such a prestigious title, and basically impersonate a federal agent just tells you the kind of person he is. Please let people know, this is offensive and disrespectful to the people who do work hard and diligently for the FBI and earned their title.

  40. FACT: he was never an FBI Agent

    or

    FAKE: he pretends to be an FBI Agent.

    Either way, he’s a phony.

  41. Cee, thanks so much for leaving your comment. I’ve never run into anyone else who called him out before. Everyone usually slams me for being too judgmental/untrusting. But it didn’t smell right, and it’s nice to hear from someone who could explain that I was on the right track. Thanks.

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