One of the most important discussions we had on Erie County Paranormal Blog Talk with Deonna Kelli-Sayed was concerning regulation of the paranormal investigation field.

The burgeoning interest in “ghost hunting” has led to the formation of many disreputable groups that take advantage of clients through lack of knowledge and false or misinterpreted evidence. These groups are springing up everywhere creating a need to police them.

While organizations like TAPS – The Atlantic Paranormal Society have gone to lengths to approve of “family members” based on technique and practice, they are not likely to monitor the activities of the members as the organization is not set up to do that.

One of the suggestions we came up with was a union or paranormal investigation guild where qualifications need to be met. In order to remain a member, one would have to uphold certain standards. They would be “bonded” and perhaps insured. dedicated to be a honest, upstanding ghost hunter. This would protect prospective clients from a bunch of teenagers who call themselves ghost hunters, who trash their home and raid their fridge in search of paranormal sandwiches.

It would also protect clients from a group that comes in an finds demonic entities everywhere they hunt. Imagine the terror of being told you have a demon under your child’s bed when it is more likely Grandma coming to visit the grandchild she never had to opportunity to see in life.

Then there is the controversy of charging fees to investigate. The most reputable investigators do this free of charge as a service to the community. Their organizations subsist on fundraising and personal contributions. It’s a labor of love. Once money comes into the equation, there is pressure to prove a haunting, pressure to remove any discovered entities. There are no guarantees with the spirit world. It’s an unknown quantity. We really have no control, nor can we make claims that we, as investigators, can do anything about it. Thus, it’s best to leave cash out of the equation.

I’m not sure how this will evolve. But, I bet there will be movement to create a paranormal guild in the near future which will help standardize the field and research. It may even further our understanding of that which we are seeking.

Food for thought!