Lately Paranormal Posers are popping up everywhere. That’s how it seems anyway. I mean, they’re always around, but anymore they seem more audacious about expecting people to buy their faked paranormal evidence as real. (And in some cases I don’t mean “buy” as in “believe” but actually fork out money.)
Luckily there are people out there willing to call out paranormal posers when they see them. Below are two examples of Paranormal Poser Busters, Jason Stromming of the Occult Section and Steve Fernino, Director of Paranormal Research Groups.
I tip my virtual hat to people like these two who unofficially police the paranormal community in an attempt to keep it safe, real, and free from the ridicule paranormal posers ultimately bring upon it with their fakery.
GHOST PHOTOS AND BIGFOOT EVIDENCE DOES NOT ALWAYS PROOF MAKE
Jason Stromming of The Occult Section is a hard sell when it comes to proof. Don’t call it that unless you have irrefutable evidence to present.
One of his most recent stories is about a paranormal team who claimed they caught a photo of a ghost. It looks interesting and creepy, but far from real. It certainly doesn’t look like irrefutable proof.
It wasn’t so much the photo I took exception to, however, as it was the newspaper article included within Jason’s post. Here’s an excerpt from Jason’s post.
“The first thing I want to do is disprove it.” says Robert McCall, skeptic and co-founder of the Ozark Mountain Paranormal Investigation Team.*
Robert spends a lot of time disproving apparent haunting in the region. “A lot of times people think there is a presence in the room and it turns out the room is where the breaker box is. Or your meters on the outside of the wall and there is a lot of energy there. Sometimes people think they are hearing things and it turns out they are just hearing things.”
But something that happened during his latest ghost hunt left Robert with no explanation. A family in north Springfield contacted the group because of some odd things that were happening.
“All the lights were shut off and the doors were locked,” says Robert. ” I came around to lock up the front door and as soon as I turned the corner I heard a growling disturbance on my EVP and seen something darker then dark move around in the hallway so I just started taking pictures of a completely dark hallway with nobody there.”
Two things really stood out to me:
- As I was reading the second paragraph, all I could think was, “Watch TV much? This sounds like he’s regurgitating a Ghost Hunters episode.”
- The second thing that bothered me was in the last sentence posted above. About how he heard a growling on his EVP. Um, an EVP is not a device. It is something you get off a device like a recorder! How can I take anyone seriously who doesn’t know that difference?
This team is about as transparent as a sheet of freshly cleaned glass. Good try. Not buying it. Bunch of adults playing ghost hunter dress-up at best. Wannabes. Posers. Period.
Two other great stories Jason’s covered along these lines are:
THE CASE OF THE DESPERATE “LOOK AT ME!” MOVIE MAKER
The other day Steve Fernino, the Director of Paranormal Research Groups, Direct Messaged me on Twitter:
Hey Courtney…I noticed you follow NQGhosthunter on Twitter. He is a complete & total fraud & makes $ off people viewing his faked videos.
I trust Steve, both as a friend and investigator. He’s not the kind to look for trouble or stir up drama just for kicks. In fact, I’d argue he’s the opposite. If he sees you need a hand, he’ll be one of the first to offer aid. (I know he did when I had the hacker/web hosting issues a couple of weeks back. He spent tons of time answering all my questions about how I could fix stuff.)
He wasn’t asking I unfollow NQGhosthunter, but I got the feeling he was strongly implying I should. Since I’m not one to just unlike/not follow others for the sake of allegience to friends, I started doing my due diligence. What had this guy done to make Steve’s red flag radar beep?
First, I went to NQGhosthunter’s profile. After perusing his bio and Twitter stream, I vaguely remembered getting an “@” message from him about a video I should watch. He claimed he was being haunted by a poltergiest and had numerous videos of the unseen entity attacking him.
I watched the video. To me, it looked stage. I shared it on HJ”s FB page and said something to the effect, “I don’t know about this. Claims it’s real, but his reaction doesn’t sit right with me when the pipe flies. What do you think?”
Others who viewed it had the same thoughts. Too staged. Looked fake.
Next, I went to Steve’s Twitter stream (@ParanormalRG). It seemed like it started innocently enough. The NQ guy must’ve sent a similiar message to Steve like the one I got. Steve had looked at the video, maybe some of the others, and let the guy know his opinion. (Because if I remember correctly, when Mr. NQ sends his Tweets, he writes something like “Hey @GhostPerson, check out my vid. I’m being haunted. What do you think?”)
Me? I thought it looked fake but didn’t want to hurt the guy’s feelings. I shared it on FB, called it as I saw it there, no harm no foul. Steve’s the kind who if you ask for his opinion, be prepared to receive an honest one. (It’s among the reasons I respect him. You always know exactly where you stand with people like Steve. There’s no B.S. mind game shenanigans.)
Well, Mr. NQ didn’t appreciate Steve’s honest assessment.
The guy bristled at being called out and threw some mud back Steve’s way. He said Steve was a skeptic of the worst variety. (Meaning he was not as open-minded as he claimed to be.)
That was it. The gloves were off. Steve started digging more, found the guy’s trying to turn a profit by passing his fake paranormal vids off as the “real” deal, and guess what? He cried “Foul!”
Good for Steve!
Mr. NQ might not have liked it, but it was well-deserved. As Steve pointed out, don’t send someone something to look at asking them what they think if you don’t really want to hear their thoughts. If it smells like shit, looks like shit, reeks of shit, guess what? People are going to tell you it’s shit!
But what’s troubling is how often this kind of stuff is happening anymore. I blame Syfy. They’re trying to pass off shows like Fact or Faked and Haunted Collector as “real.” Oh, and let’s not forget the king of them all and the benchmark setter for paranormal reality TV (and “faking it“), Ghost Hunters.
DON’T BE HATIN’
I fully expect nasty comments on this post. Why? Because getting defensive and angry is about the only recourse Paranormal Posers have since they don’t have any real proof.
To any PPs out there who want to take me on: Bring it! Contenders welcome. You’re only kidding yourself if you put your faked evidence up to scrutiny. Dirty laundry always comes clean in the end. I have my detergent ready.