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A strange industry gave impetus to the pandemic: professional ghost hunting

A strange industry gave impetus to the pandemic: professional ghost hunting
A strange industry gave impetus to the pandemic: professional ghost hunting

It is important to note that the ghost hunting as an “industry” discussed briefly in our article is not the same as paranormal tourism, known as dark tourism, which has long been recognized and increasingly accepted as a field of research. The latter focuses on sites , are linked to creepy events and crimes against humanity, so the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, the site of the inhumane atrocities of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, or the house of a notorious serial killer could all be targets of dark tourism.

Tourists in Chernobyl, near Reactor 4 – the area of ​​the nuclear disaster is a classic site for dark tourismSource: APA-PictureDesk / HELMUT FOHRINGER / APA / Fohringer

And paraturism is built around strange, inexplicable phenomena, places of alleged ghost walks, and such places are all over the world. Although none of them are considered to be traditional forms of tourism, the service infrastructure behind them is all that can be interpreted by traditional tourism analyzes. Well, some ghost hunters also organize trips for ghost mothers, here you can feel the connection between the two. But ghost hunting is something that its name is all about: justifying the presence of harassing ghosts in a particular location.

Skeptics can also start

Of course, for the “economics of ghost hunting,” it is important to note that in describing and understanding how the “sector” works, what we think about the reality of the phenomena that ghost hunters study and that are usually classified outside of science is not really important. For there are plenty who are willing to pay these seemingly eccentric formations to find out if their home has some kind of stray soul trapped there. Maybe they really don’t just imagine someone following them in the evenings – they just never turn around and never see them. Thus, although ghost hunting is not an officially registered activity in Western countries, quite a few groups deal with it and the decipherment of other paranormal phenomena.

And how much?

The data may seem surprisingly large. The operators of the portal called Paranormalsocieties have defined their site as the gold side of the largest association on the Internet specializing in detecting such phenomena. At the time of writing, more than 4,800 teams or organizations or initiatives specializing in such matters were registered – in the U.S. alone, and only a quarter of that a few years ago. But it is also easy to find paramedics from other countries on the site (Paranormal Investigators from Hungary are represented). Of course, not all groups traveling in such activities are registered on the portal, and the global number of ghost-hunting teams may be much higher. And according to some accounts, they also seem to have plenty of work to do.

IllustrationSource: dpa Picture-Alliance via AFP / Marijan Murat

The hotlines glow even more

Although we cannot process all the reports on ghost hunters in our article, for some of the big “markets” for ghost persecution – the US, India and the United Kingdom – the statement is risky: as before.Question, what could be the reason for this? But let’s see some specific numbers first!

In Iowa, USA, for example, a 20-person investigation team is doing this work on a voluntary basis. Reports of them show an increase in their alerts, mainly in October (partly due to Halloween). They receive 30-80 inquiries a year, but the number of their calls is increasing.

Paranormal investigators from India report similarities in an autumn report. Since its inception in 2016, a group called PAIRS has received 700 inquiries, with the majority of clients requesting a discreet investigation of their “ghost problem.” True, as the group says, there were roughly 500 false alarms out of these. Elements of dripping water pipes, squeaking gutters, loud rodents, or faulty electrical networks were behind many of the supernatural phenomena thought supernatural. But the closure caused by the coronavirus epidemic is seen as, as they put it, in a new horror film that attracts many viewers: more alarm and more concern from customers. The number of their calls nowadays is an average of three per week. For a horror caused by paranormal phenomena in a city in Delhi and a telephone helpline operator said they had had roughly 1,000 calls in the past year.

The horror is, of course, partly due to simple physical phenomena, as well as – and ghost hunters independently agree on this – the stress caused by the confinement caused by the coronavirus, and the often unnoticed mental strain. In other words, it seems that the statement has no scientific basis: the more we are at home, the more likely we are to see and hear inexplicable, sometimes frightening phenomena.

A man who filmed paranormal phenomena in his house for 5 yearsSource: –

By the way, the ghost hunters of the world – at least based on the reports – this picture emerges – are not, or not always, hunters in the strict sense of the word. What Iowa and another team based in Cincinnati, PAIRS in India, and a British unit have in common is that they only detect and document the phenomenon, using state-of-the-art technology. If it seems to be proven that some kind of supernatural, perhaps malicious entity is carrying out his blessing activities in a home, the client will be referred to a priest, shaman, visually impaired, medium for further consultation. And their service fee is usually higher than that of frequent volunteer ghost hunters, for example, the ghost take-off rate for a famous medium started at $ 150 in Pittsburgh, and its price list now shows that its prices would go down.

Ghost hunts and history

As mentioned in the introduction, it is impossible to say exactly what economic weight the activities of paranormal detectives and ghost hunters represent. Most of them seem to derive their income not, or not primarily, from the pursuit of the ghost, the identification of paranormal phenomena, but from the paranormal tourism mentioned earlier. That is, from leading tours to ghostly places, giving local history lectures, and, of course, the fact that brave candidates can even take part in a live deployment for a small surcharge. In the ghostly English and Scottish castles, a pound worth up to 5-10 thousand forints can be requested for a small group tour per person, but there are places where the stakes can be even higher. For example, local ghost hunters, who supplement their income with TV appearances more than once, charge up to 25-30 thousand forints for a visit to Liverpool’s alleged ghost sites.

One of the tools of a ghost hunter on Halloween during ManchesterForrás: Shutterstock/Juiced Up Media

A company called Ghost Hunts had been conducting ghost hunts across the U.S. before the epidemic, with 10,000 guests on those occasions in the peace year before the coronavirus. The Ohio State Reformatory, one of the main historical attractions in Mansfield, Ohio, is one of the main historical attractions (155,000 were imprisoned here during its roughly 100-year operation). Addicts of hope He avoided demolition thanks to the film. It was acquired by a local nonprofit for $ 1 from the state. In addition to traditional historical walks, promising visitors mainly ghost hunts, they successfully attract about 130,000 a year. According to a local tourism official, ghost tickets sold to tourists in the haunted buildings generated $ 1 million in annual economic performance in that state alone, independent of other tourism opportunities.

Az Ohio State Reformatory:

According to recent data from Bloomberg and American Hunts, which functions as an industry aggregation in the USA alone, $ 300 million a year, or nearly 100 billion forints, is generated due to paranormal tourism and damn places.

Ghost hunters, of course – who are often tour guides in such venues – are subject to criticism all over the world. They range from a smile that looks away (or rather down to the point that they call them scammers who make unscrupulous allegations and draw bona fide, using their instruments to convince others, for example, of 1000-year-old Tamil spirits that the ghost understands both Hindi and English). and technical jargon when communicating with them.

IllustrationSource: dpa Picture-Alliance via AFP / Marijan Murat

Criticisms here or there, traditional tourism – it seems – can even benefit from a witty version. A study of the U.S. situation in 2020 found that ghost tourism — and with it ghost hunters — would not only destroy traditional, history-centric tourism, but, on the contrary, strengthen it by incorporating previously neglected sites into it. And it seems that even professional historians and museologists want the terrain to be interested in traditional, night-time escorted tourism.

We do not say that spirits exist, nor do we say that they do not. We distance ourselves from this question. ” A local historian in Arizona summed up the position of the entire profession.

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