Posts Tagged ‘investigations’
Back in February I was on a panel with Professor Chris French and Trystan Swale at the QED conference in Manchester. The panel was called ‘Ghost Investigations Today’ and that was exactly what we were talking about.
The QED team have made the talk available via Youtube and it can be watched below. I cannot watch myself talk so I have no idea what it’s like. I was great fun though and I just want to say thanks again to Mike, Marsh, Janis, Andy, Rick and the rest of the team for the chance to take part. I can’t wait until QED in March.
Photo credit: Gammy
On Sunday I woke up, did my normal morning things and then sat down to check my emails. I was quite surprised to find an email in my inbox called “slagging HRPI off and copyright laws.”
I opened it to find a long email from the Haunted realms paranormal investigation group telling me that I had broken their copyright on the website they have and they were taking legal action against me for ‘defamation of character’.
I sat, stunned, as I tried to work out where exactly I had done these monsterous deeds when I recalled that the previous night somebody had asked, via my formspring account, what the worst case of woo I had ever come across was.
I had linked to the Haunted realms site on which there was* a report they wrote about their investigation at a private house in Calne which is a town near me. In the report the team spoke about members being scratched, sensetive members being overwhelmed, the home owner being pulled along a bed by her leg whilst they were there, strange noises and people being pushed by the ‘entitiy’.
Now, in my haste I wrote that they had claimed to sense a demon. Something HRPI were quick to point out they had not done. See, in my confusion I had intepreted their labelling of a photo as ‘evil face’ as meaning an evil entity which is usually a name commonly given to demonic entities. In fact, when a twitter friend of mine looked for a definition of an evil spirit or entity she came across:
“an evil spirit or devil, especially one thought to possess a person or act as a tormentor in hell”
I’m sure I’m not the only person to have made that damned leap in thinking of an evil spirit as a demon. Silly me though, eh?
The claims that I was guilty of ‘defamation of character’ amused me because the comments I made were that the team were ‘woo’ and ‘less-than’rational’ which are both my opinion. An opinion that cannot be falsified (especially when you look around their website, which is here – oh damn it! I’ve infringed their copyright again, haven’t I… not.)
After several replies in which I told the HRPI founders that I was happy to hear from their legal representatives, I am still left waiting to hear anything more from them.
In total they sent me three emails they were rambling with contradictions, mistakes and showed what I take to be a complete lack of understanding. By the end of the emails from them to me they had:
– threatened to sue me for copyright infringement for linking to their site.
– threatened to sue me for defamation of character.
– threatened that they were going to sue me AND my entire research team for the comments I had made.
– threatened that a team who had visited the Calne residence previous to them were also going to sue me because of the comments that I mad.
– threatened to sue me because the owner of the house in Calne had allegedly told me lies about them.
I did call them woo, and I did call them ‘less than rational’ and I wholeheartedly stand by those comments because when the owner of the house in Calne got in touch with a WPR team member, she was confused about what was in her house and she told us she believed there may be a demon there because of what she had witnessed during the HRPI investigation.
After reading the report in which these investigators acted the way I previously mentioned (being scratched, pushed, overwhelmed etc.) in the presence of the house owner who was already scared because she had been witnessing odd things in her home when alone, I honestly felt that what they had done was not only less-than-rationa but also bordering on unethical too.
I’m not holding my breath whilst I wait to hear from their ‘legal representative’ but I shall, indeed, keep followers of my blog informed of what happens.
* they DID have the report, photos and videos of the investigation they conducted at the private home in Calne on their website, until some time after they threatened to take legal action against me. When I refused to take the links to their site out of my formspring answer they removed all traces of the report, photos and videos from the internet.
Of course, they didn’t think about the fact I might check the cache of their site and be able to get hold of copies anyway, just in case I need them as evidence.