Ghost hunting group gets shaken up and captures real anomaly on video

As we tweeted @doubtfulnews earlier this week, ghost hunters captured real live anomalous data on video during the earthquake in Oklahoma. We took a pass to report it on the website then but it seems to have captured the interest of others.

Ghost Hunters Captured Oklahoma Earthquake on Video

At the moment an earthquake rattled Oklahoma over the weekend, a team of paranormal researchers was inspecting a Mexican restaurant in Oklahoma City for ghosts. Their video cameras captured no spirits but did document the most intense temblor ever recorded in the state, producing footage that made the local news.

The new system was being put to use for the first time upstairs at El Alex, a Mexican restaurant, on Saturday night when the ghost hunters heard an unusual sound.


“It just started rumbling,” Mr. Doyon said. “I thought the client’s ice maker had kicked in. Then the sound got louder and louder and everything started moving. It seemed to go on and on.”

Source: New York Times

I’m not sure why this is “news”, really, but it does highlight this questionable claim:

Mr. Doyon […] called it exceedingly rare to capture a ghost on video.

In today’s world where there are cameras everywhere, recording everything, we get great video records we might not normally get. But, Mr. Doyon, I’m afraid we do not have a verifiable video record of ghosts.

  18 comments for “Ghost hunting group gets shaken up and captures real anomaly on video

  1. November 8, 2011 at 10:20 PM

    I think you missed the whole point of the video. First of all, we didn’t claim to capture anything anomalous on the video, and in fact, it is stated in every article that I have seen written about it that we did NOT catch a ghost. It just so happened that while we were recording, we experienced the strongest earthquake ever to be recorded in Oklahoma, and our system recorded the building shaking and swaying during the event. The footage of the earthquake is what is of interest here, not anything else. Seems to me that you are twisting the story around to fit your agenda and give you something else to write about. I will also state that not one of our members got ‘shaken up’ as you put it. Where did you get that? It wasn’t written in any article that has been published on the event. Our members all remained calm, waited for the earthquake to pass and then went to inspect the building and our equipment. I respect your views, however, I think your style of reporting is incredibly dishonest. When you say, “can you really believe this stuff,” I will assume you are referring to your own b.s.

    • idoubtit
      November 9, 2011 at 2:51 AM

      Sorry you didn’t like the puns. An earthquake in OK is an anomalous event. That was what I was referring to.

      You are correct though in that I am critical of paranormal investigators who claim “evidence” of ghosts. That activity is intellectually dishonest because one can’t say they have evidence of the paranormal. The best answer you must give is “I don’t know”. Yet, ghost hunters CONSISTENTLY assume that the paranormal is real. That is an unwarranted assumption.

      Yours is one of many groups out there recording data. But, as yet, this work fails to lead to anything that answers the actual question “what are people experiencing and why”. That is, unless you are satisfied with jumping to the paranormal conclusion.

      For my view, see here: Science is the most reliable way we humans have for learning about the world. I don’t agree that paranormal investigations done in the typical way qualify as science and actually may do harm.

    • snoma
      November 9, 2011 at 3:20 PM

      Tim, IDoubtIt is not saying you claim you recorded a ghost in the video in question. If you think so, I suggest you re-read the post.

      All she’s doing is quoting the NYTimes article where the journalist writes “Mr. Doyon, who acknowledges that not everybody regards his line of work as legitimate, called it exceedingly rare to capture a ghost on video.”

      What IDoubtIt is reacting to in regard to that sentence, is that fact that it’s not only rare to capture a ghost on video but that so far we have no proof that a ghost has ever been captured on video.

      As far as the headline goes, we’re sorry you didn’t like the pun. It’s not a dig at you or your research group nor do we claim that you were in indeed shaken up (other than perhaps physically from the tremors of the earthquake. Get it? That’s the pun) or that you freaked out or anything like that. I would argue our pun-filled headline is no worse than what you’d get from a local newspaper or perhaps a silly tabloid.

      • idoubtit
        November 9, 2011 at 3:44 PM

        “Skeptically silly”

        That needs to be a new podcast.

  2. Christi
    November 8, 2011 at 11:40 PM

    Awesome response Tim! Perhaps the writers for the doubtful news blog should actually do their own “research” before writing their articles.

    • idoubtit
      November 9, 2011 at 7:38 AM

      I have done CONSIDERABLE research on this topic.
      http://idoubtit.wordpress.com/category/ghosts/

    • November 9, 2011 at 12:58 PM

      Idoubtit:

      Articles in question:

      http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11/08/ghost-hunters-captured-oklahoma-earthquake-on-video/
      http://www.news9.com/story/15970858/paranormal-researches-catch-earthquake-on-camera

      Say what you will, but you know damn well that you deliberately twisted the facts and wrote your article with the intention of doing nothing more then jumping on your soap-box to publicly scorn me while gaining another page-rank increasing link-back to your own website. You used the phrase, “shaken up” to make it seem as though we were having a “dude run” moment. You used the word anomalous in order to make it seem as though we were claiming evidence of a ghost. I know what you were trying to do, and although I have no problem with you casting a light on those who deliberately falsify evidence, or childishly declare everything they don’t understand as being a ghost, I do have a problem with you twisting the facts of an article around to deliberately make us look bad in hopes of making yourself look better. I wonder, did you get a big round of applause from your fellow ‘haters’ out there for shaking your finger at me and giving me a scolding? You don’t know anything about me, my team, our standards, our beliefs, our protocols or anything else… nor do you even care. You read the story in the New York Post, and saw in it an opportunity to demonize me, but trust me when I say it didn’t do anything but make you look ill-prepared, rude, quick to cast judgment and foolish.

      To set the record straight; when the reporter for the New York Times asked me if we ever caught video of a ghost at the location, I simply answered by saying, “no we haven’t… and in fact, visual evidence of a ghost is exceedingly rare and in my many years of conducting research in the field, I have never yet recorded anything visually that we could say for sure was evidence of a haunting.

      It would do you good to remember that not all paranormal research teams are alike. We all come into this field for a variety of reasons and with a variety of intentions. As far as we here at FindersCreepers are concerned, the vast majority of the time, we report no evidence of a haunting to our clients. Are we perfect? No, but neither is science… I could provide an endless list of mistakes that science has made over the years. Science has progressed to where it is today, not because everyone agreed with each other, but because different scientists from around the world decided to go against what was generally accepted and follow their own beliefs. It is because of those people that dared to challenge their peers that new discoveries were made and old beliefs were changed. The world was no longer flat, there were no longer 9 planets in the solar system, and life on the earth was around a good 40,000,000 years longer then it was originally ‘proven’ to be… by scientists. Heck, at the time being, scientists around the world can’t even agree on whether or not global warming even exists; much less what causes it.

      For the record, we don’t ever claim that we have ‘proof’ of ghosts. Most of the time, we find logical explanations for the phenomena our clients report to us. There are times that we find anomalies we consider “interesting” and leave open to speculation. Once in a while, we find evidence of something that appears to be intelligently attempting to communicate with us. Even then, we don’t claim to have “proof” of a ghost. That is why we do the research we do; it is in hopes of finding a better understanding of things that happen around us… things that none of us, not even you or I, can ever truly comprehend.

      With all the poorly trained, immature and ridiculous teams out there that spend every weekend running around abandoned buildings and presenting bad evidence, I for the life of me can’t figure out why you found it so important to personally address me. We were simply lucky that our DVR system was recording at the time of the largest earthquake in Oklahoma’s history and as a result, we were left holding some amazing video footage of the event. Our local and state news showed the footage, and the New York Times followed it up. Was that so very threatening to your cause that you could not avoid the temptation to go on the attack? Now listen, we may disagree on some basic things, such as the fact that I do belief in the survival of our “soul” outside of our human body, and you do not, but I can assure you that you have no more proof that your assumptions are correct as I do about mine. I suppose none of us will truly know for sure until we die, and by then it will be a little late to share the facts with the rest of the world. Until then, I suggest you get off your high-horse and at least accept that on this planet, we all have differing beliefs, values and understanding of what happens around us… and it is those differences that make our life here on earth such an amazing and interesting adventure.

      Sincerely,

      Tim Doyon, Founder & Director
      FindersCreepers Paranormal Research Team of central Oklahoma
      http://www.finderscreepers.org

      PS: In my opinion, the fact that we have people conducting research on things we don’t understand is not a huge problem on this planet. The problem is that we have too little love and way too many haters out there.

      PSS: Dare to be different… it makes life fun.

      • idoubtit
        November 9, 2011 at 2:45 PM

        To Tim Doyon: I apologize that the wording used here to frame the story upset you. Yet, I feel I used nothing personal against you or your group that was not already presented in the articles referenced.

        What I have done in the original post is to relate a story ALREADY in the news with some puns and humor. I’d be surprised to find that this was the first time or the worst case of such commentary Mr. Doyon has encountered as a paranormal investigator. It’s a hazard of the activity, I suppose, just as expressing doubts and questions prompts attacks as well. One has to learn to deal with it.

        You assumed quite a long and nasty list of things about me, I’ll skip commenting on them except to say they are incorrect. Speaking of assumptions…

        I have visited the FindersCreepers website and found this statement:

        We are working hard … to reach the day when we are finally able to provide concrete scientific evidence of the survival of life outside of our physical human body.

        You have assumed that life after death exists. That’s a huge leap. Just in that quote, this group has admitted it is belief-based, not scientific. I’m not even going to address the ridiculous straw man you created and called “science” in your comments above. I question your group’s credentials to say they use scientific methodology. I suspect our definitions of that are VERY different.

        I have taken the position that most paranormal investigators try to do the right thing in the best way they can think of. They also may help people who are having difficult experiences. But their methods are fundamentally flawed and will never provide us with much useful knowledge as long as they continue on this path. It will not be amateur (or as Mr. Doyon calls his group “professional”) paranormal investigators who provide “concrete scientific evidence” of life after death. Humans have been attempting to address this HUGE question for centuries. It’s not one that will be answered with video cameras or by EVPs.

        I completely disagree with many items you have written here and on your web page (of similar sentiment to the thousand other investigation sites out there). I chose to pick my battles and express my views by other means – by writing in journals or for other blogs open to comment by knowledgeable readers, making presentations, etc. – than by ranting on websites I don’t like.

        So, Mr. Doyon, I get your point and will be more diligent in consideration of how the headlines may be received. But “yelling” at me, so to speak, because you didn’t like the light that was shone upon you doesn’t further your goals, it just makes you sound UNprofessional.

        Note: The purpose of this site is to relate news stories that are of interest to me and to others that visit. I am not a professional journalist, nor do I claim to be. I am, however, a professional scientist. But, I’m not even going to use that trump card here. Enough said.

  3. November 9, 2011 at 8:59 AM

    Let me get this straight – Ghost hunters reported “anomalous” data, and when you go to the article, what they are really saying is they saw the earthquake, but no ghosts?

    LOL! What an equivocation of the term “anonymous”!

  4. November 9, 2011 at 9:00 AM

    Doh – I meant “Anomalous”.

    • idoubtit
      November 9, 2011 at 2:59 PM

      Well, it’s humor. But earthquakes in OK ARE anomalous!

  5. Bob
    November 9, 2011 at 3:07 PM

    “in my many years of conducting research in the field, I have never yet recorded anything visually that we could say for sure was evidence of a haunting”

    Good science would take those results indicate something. It suggests to me that your methodology is totally flawed and that some other method of investigation should be adopted. How many times to you need to NOT demonstrate the existence of the paranormal before you conclude that 1) your methods are not cutting the mustard, or 2) the paranormal is not there. I guarantee you that the physicists at CERN, if they can’t find the Higgs, will not continue bashing protons together expecting to get anything new. Why should you?

    RJB

    • November 9, 2011 at 8:13 PM

      I’m going to say this, and then I’m going to let it go; defending myself in here is like a tea-party member trying to explain his or her views to an auditorium full of Democrats.

      Bob, your argument would make sense, if we relied solely on visual evidence to support our research. We do not. We use video primarily to document our research sessions, as well as aiding in our safety, training and for a variety of other reasons. Of course we do analyze our video files, and I admit that to date we have not captured any footage that I would consider good evidence of the paranormal. However, that doesn’t mean we haven’t documented some interesting anomalies. Per our protocols, (which I wrote) we will never present something we simply don’t understand as proof of the paranormal. You see, we don’t claim to have proof of ghosts. But, we do have evidence on other media and plenty of personal experiences to give us reason and the desire to continue our research.

      I’m not trying to convince you or anyone else of the existence of anything… that is not our purpose. We simply conduct our research, and in turn do our very best to find honest answers to things our clients are experiencing but don’t understand. In this case, we were simply recording inside a building when the earthquake shook and we were lucky enough to capture footage of it. That footage made the news and generated a lot of feedback, and for whatever reason, made us the target of this group.

      I don’t know any of you personally… if I met you in person, I would probably like each and everyone of you… and you would probably like me too. We disagree on our views of some things, but neither one of us can be sure of what happens to us after we die. Y’all seem to believe that our life’s energy simply dissipates away as heat energy, and you may be correct on that assumption. I believe that we continue to exist after the death of our bodies albeit in a completely different manner. You believe what you believe based on what science has taught you. My beliefs are based on my own experiences and research. It’s really that simple isn’t it? You believe that my methods are flawed, (even though you don’t know them) and I believe that science is also imperfect and has closed its mind to anything it has not yet proven.

      Idoubtit: When I say we are professionals, I am referring to the way we conduct our business. On my team, I have a scientist (one that does believe in possibilities outside of what she learned in school). I also have a Police Officer, a Psychologist and other professionals from a variety of other fields. We do our investigations freely, out of our own pockets, to ensure that we are not motivated by money to produce evidence that isn’t there. We are well mannered, professional in our conduct and incredibly honest with our research. We have put into place protocols that ensure the credibility of any of our evidence. So, even though you don’t like what it is we do, please don’t imply that we can’t be professionals while we do it.

      I’m sorry I took your comments so personally; and I apologize if you felt like I was ‘yelling at you”. I wasn’t. I was simply defending my team, and myself for what I felt was a very “cheap shot.”

      • idoubtit
        November 9, 2011 at 9:40 PM

        Once again, I’ll stress I was not making you a target, just reporting on a link we found. Cause that’s what we do. And, you do what you do. I completely understand that this is fulfilling to you and your team members. Paranormal investigators serve a useful function as a safe place for distressed people to tell their story because most scientists are not involved in these small, personal events.

        We definitely disagree on terms, scope and protocol. I’m rather familiar with the protocol having examined some 1000 paranormal investigators websites. What I would like to see is an open dialogue and cooperation between these paranormal groups and more “skeptical” groups (a hot button term, I know) that I believe would generate some very interesting results and insights to BOTH sides. I am of the opinion that the NEW generation of skeptics is generally NOT the dismissive, closed-minded stereotype of old but curious to learn about other people’s perceptions and ideas. We could design some good tests and experiments together!

        As an aside, I would recommend the book Real Science by J. Ziman for anyone who is interested in a “scientific method”. And, I also am open to discussions off the comments at editor@doubtfulnews.com

        Thanks for participating in this discussion, Tim.

      • snoma
        November 10, 2011 at 4:34 AM

        Just a question, Tim.
        After you and your team have analyzed your video/audio files (and whatever stuff you might have recorded) have you tried to falsify it?
        Set up the equipment in a location with similar conditions that’s supposedly not haunted and studied those findings as well, as a control?

        I’m a film and music production major. I know how easy it can be to get weird stuff (or I guess you could call it anomalies) on tape, both video and audio, and there can be a number of reasons for this. Faulty equipment, faulty settings, faulty cables, etc.

  6. Bob
    November 9, 2011 at 8:31 PM

    Can I look at your protocols?

    Bob

  7. Massachusetts
    November 24, 2011 at 5:55 PM

    I would like to see a serious, legitimate collaboration between a ghost hunting group and a skeptical group too. I would like to see how the skeptics critique the process, the protocols, and the underlying assumptions, etc. I would like to see a back and forth between the groups on these issues that’s ongoing and non trivial. I’d like to see serious skeptics doing the field research and experiencing the phenomena for themselves which people apparently find moving, but the cameras and sound systems seem to have such a hard time recording clearly for later review. That would be interesting. Would the skeptics feel differently after some of these investigations or would they feel more confidant about there initial assumptions?

    I sometimes watch the paranormal shows when they record EVPs that sound, to me, like static or hissing or “blip, bleep, bloop” but the ghost hunters declare triumphantly that they heard something very concrete and idiomatic, like “I am John Wilkes Booth.” I’d like to see if there’s some way for the methodology to control for subjectivity that everyone could agree on.

  8. February 1, 2012 at 1:23 PM

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