Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#21  Postby jerome » Jun 06, 2012 8:33 pm

That's a good point Virphen. Basically there is a problem in the UK in that ghosthunters do act at time unethically: but those ghosthunters are indeed simply committing the breaches that would be unacceptable with doctors, journalists, or even private individuals. The difference is that the professions are regulated - and while parapsychologists and psychical researchers are regulated by the pA and SPR and their universities, the amateur ghosthunting groups had no regulation at all until ASSAP were recognized as the professional association here last year. The issues are not by any means confined to ghosthunters, as you correctly point out -- but Hayley ( a prominent uK skeptic) is engaged in dialogue with these groups.

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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#22  Postby MrFungus420 » Jun 07, 2012 6:27 am

It's unethical from top to bottom.

The best that can be said is that some of the "practitioners" are only self-deluded and not outright frauds.
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#23  Postby Scarlett » Jun 07, 2012 6:35 am

I can't be mean to Jerome! I just can't do it, he's just too lovely :nono:
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#24  Postby chairman bill » Jun 07, 2012 8:14 am

Scot Dutchy wrote:There are no issues in ghost hunting as ghosts like god do not exist.


But live people do, and as they get caught up in an activity that isn't devoid of (live) human interactions, there are ethical issues.

Of course, it's 'ghost-hunting' & not research. If it was research, there would be the involvement of an ethics committee, somewhere along the line.
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#25  Postby jerome » Jun 07, 2012 9:20 am

Morning all! Yep my girlfriend's PhD is on the subject of ghosts -- she submits this month, after three long years of very dry data analysis - and like any research had to have Ethical Approval by the university. It was survey based, and did not involve entering peoples homes, but was still a complex and challenging process, and was one of the factors leading to Dave and i writing a paper on ethics in "ghosthunting". The Parapsychological Association and SPR generally expect I think most of their members to come from a university and have Research Ethics Committees providing oversight -- but they also provide guidelines The PA and SPR use the following code of conduct: http://archived.parapsych.org/ethics.html

The issue is sadly not with the parapsychology community, but with the ghosthunting groups, which have always existed, but mushroomed after Most Haunted and its US equivalents. As Bill says, the problem is that people do this stuff, and it can have a real impact on real people. Now the paper I wrote with Dave Woods of ASSAP is actually pretty nuanced: and ASSAP's new role as a professional body is not dictatorial, but essentially voluntary at this time -- but the important hing at the moment is to follow the example of O keefe and Baker nd try and get some practiucal ethical guidelines out there for people who do this stuff, and who aren't in any way part of the parapsychological community so have never heard of the SPR or the PA, let along their guidelines. :)

And Paula, you should argue with me, I'm ghastly really. :) However like everyone else, my main intent is to reduce the damage done by ghosthunters, and try to stop these people messing people up.

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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#26  Postby mattthomas » Jun 07, 2012 9:22 am

Paula wrote:I can't be mean to Jerome! I just can't do it, he's just too lovely :nono:

Oh but you can be mean to me? I see how that works! :nono:
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#27  Postby trubble76 » Jun 07, 2012 12:36 pm

Today my mood is dark, therefore my position is that if someone is stupid enough to believe ghost stories then they pretty much deserve all the crap that befalls them as a result. Their problems are essentially self-inflicted and my pity is an increasingly scarce resource.

I will of course retract my criticism should anyone show me some decent evidence for but a single one of these supposed millions of ghosts all over the face of this planet. Lots of people reporting it does not constitute decent evidence, just as millions of christians does not constitute decent evidence for a god.
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#28  Postby campermon » Jun 07, 2012 12:43 pm

That's fighting talk Trubble! :lol;

;)
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#29  Postby chairman bill » Jun 07, 2012 12:43 pm

If ghosts did exist, what would be the ethics vis a vis exorcism?
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#30  Postby CookieJon » Jun 07, 2012 12:53 pm

What about the ghosts themselves?

Is it ethical to perform experiments on the immortal souls of the dead without their consent?
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#31  Postby trubble76 » Jun 07, 2012 12:55 pm

campermon wrote:That's fighting talk Trubble! :lol;

;)


Metaphorically, of course. :)

The subject of ghosts exasperates me, it is many layers of stupid. We need not worry about dead people, it is the live people that are out to harm us. I suppose it has an extra touch of juice for me personally because recently I had a falling out with my cousin's wife because she took my reluctance to accept anecdotes as cast-iron proof as a personal attack on her thus making my previously close relationship with my cousin and his family very difficult to maintain.

It's like losing a friend because you won't believe he has a magical pony called Rupert that flies him to the moon when no-one is watching. It sad, and stupid, and sad, and stupid.
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#32  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jun 07, 2012 12:59 pm

CookieJon wrote:What about the ghosts themselves?

Is it ethical to perform experiments on the immortal souls of the dead without their consent?

Are you trying to build up to a Godwin?
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#33  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jun 07, 2012 1:01 pm

trubble76 wrote:Today my mood is dark, therefore my position is that if someone is stupid enough to believe ghost stories then they pretty much deserve all the crap that befalls them as a result. Their problems are essentially self-inflicted and my pity is an increasingly scarce resource.

I will of course retract my criticism should anyone show me some decent evidence for but a single one of these supposed millions of ghosts all over the face of this planet. Lots of people reporting it does not constitute decent evidence, just as millions of christians does not constitute decent evidence for a god.

Wouldn't a better reason to retract your criticism be proof that some people simply cannot help being that stupid?
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#34  Postby trubble76 » Jun 07, 2012 1:07 pm

Zwaarddijk wrote:
trubble76 wrote:Today my mood is dark, therefore my position is that if someone is stupid enough to believe ghost stories then they pretty much deserve all the crap that befalls them as a result. Their problems are essentially self-inflicted and my pity is an increasingly scarce resource.

I will of course retract my criticism should anyone show me some decent evidence for but a single one of these supposed millions of ghosts all over the face of this planet. Lots of people reporting it does not constitute decent evidence, just as millions of christians does not constitute decent evidence for a god.

Wouldn't a better reason to retract your criticism be proof that some people simply cannot help being that stupid?


Possibly. Can you provide such proof?
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#35  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jun 07, 2012 1:31 pm

trubble76 wrote:
Zwaarddijk wrote:
trubble76 wrote:Today my mood is dark, therefore my position is that if someone is stupid enough to believe ghost stories then they pretty much deserve all the crap that befalls them as a result. Their problems are essentially self-inflicted and my pity is an increasingly scarce resource.

I will of course retract my criticism should anyone show me some decent evidence for but a single one of these supposed millions of ghosts all over the face of this planet. Lots of people reporting it does not constitute decent evidence, just as millions of christians does not constitute decent evidence for a god.

Wouldn't a better reason to retract your criticism be proof that some people simply cannot help being that stupid?


Possibly. Can you provide such proof?

well, no. it was mostly an inquiry as to whether such a proof would at all suffice. OTOH, I do think there's a fair share of people that haven't perceived any tangible reason why learning to think would benefit them, and for whom the effort required would be too overwhelming.
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#36  Postby jerome » Jun 07, 2012 1:41 pm

Hey trubble,

first sympathies on the family issue. However people have odd experiences, and those experiences are very real to them. What I don't get is do you mean to assert only stupid people see or believe in ghosts? :)

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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#37  Postby trubble76 » Jun 07, 2012 1:52 pm

jerome wrote:Hey trubble,

first sympathies on the family issue. However people have odd experiences, and those experiences are very real to them. What I don't get is do you mean to assert only stupid people see or believe in ghosts? :)

j x


Yes, people have odd experiences, attributing them to the spirits of people that are dead is stupid. There are many things in this world we do not fully understand, humouring idiots that assign such things to gods, angels, goblins, gremlins, ghosts, care-bears is helping neither them nor the rest of us. It creates a world in which nasty little liars can make a good living from little more than "woooohhhh".
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#38  Postby jerome » Jun 07, 2012 1:56 pm

Yeah I can see where you are coming from. However say you wake up and see a figure bending over your bed. You or I might say "hypnopompic halluciantion" but to most folks that a ghost, and pretty convincing. And if you see your apparition in company, in broad daylight, and they see it too, what other word can you use but "ghost?"

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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#39  Postby tuco » Jun 07, 2012 1:59 pm

Ilusion.
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Re: Ethical Issues in Ghosthunting

#40  Postby jerome » Jun 07, 2012 2:25 pm

In terms of critical thinking though, how would you know it was an illusion not a ghost? :)

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