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Home » Headline, Paranormal

Editorial reply: Paranormal State and Chip Coffey

Submitted by on November 29, 2008 – 12:41 PM81 Comments | 13,680 views


I’ve been getting a lot of hate mail due to the article that I posted here in GhostTheory about the Paranormal state letter from a former client of theirs. You can read the article Here.

Now, I want to dispel some misconceptions about that post. I did not write the letter in question.
I am not saying that Kirby Robinson is correct in his letter, but it does make you question the entire show. I got the letter from EyeonTheParanormal and just reported about it here.

Let’s take a look at some comments made about the post.

Magie said:
I read all of this and watched the episode of the messenger… You are wrong on many accounts. Hate to break it to you. That woman, Kelli Ryan, she is making wild accustations when there is no proof, and you seem to be jealous. How about you grow up and stop hating on ohter paranormal investigators just because they are more well known than you. And who cares if Ryan Buell was looking at himself in the mirror its not against the law and Kelli Ryan is saying that Ryan Buell and Chip Coffey are picking on her, well she’s making accusations about them. You are sad, and so is Kelli Ryan.

To which I responded:

Magie,
The show “Paranormal State” is based off the research from the PRS team. Maybe the PRS team (before the show) was a humble ‘Ghost Hunting’ team. It seems that after A&E network created the show, all we ever see in the episodes is a 30 minute long reality show that is cleverly edited to have a cliffhanger before every commercial break and sometimes in between.
There is no real scientific investigating done through out the show. By A&E adding sound effects when there were no sounds during the taping, is to be considered a slap in the face to a more intelligent audience.
I’m not “hating” nor am I “jealous” because they are more well known than GhostTheory since GhostTheory is not a ‘Ghost Hunting’ team. That is not the point of this website.
Ryan Buell decided to put his work (PRS team) on the air and sell out his beliefs. There is no research team out there in the name of science that would let a couple of producers add special effects to their work, just to embellish the truth in order to score a bigger audience.
I’m sure the people who believe in the evidence that is presented by these shows, to be the same people who watch “Most Haunted” or “Ghost Adventures” on the Travel channel.
Thanks for your comment

Yes, I think Most Haunted and Ghost Adventures are both horrible shows that try to exploit the paranormal.

The second comment I received was from Elizabeth:

Elizabeth said:
First of all I would like to start out by asking where is the proof that Chip Coffey recieved all the information prior? You have no proof that shows he did. So there is your first lie among many others. You say “The PRS team represented themselves as being part of Penn State University, which was only the beginning of their deceptions.” What deception is that? Are you saying they don’t attend school there? Because that is ANOTHER LIE. I went to Penn State and guess what, THEY DO. People know their lives will be exposed on this show, so did this “psychic” woman. She still choose to make the phone call. And if she is such a great psychic, why couldn’t she get the ghost out of her house? No she had to call someone on the other side of the country to help GET HER PUBLICITY. Stop attacking these people and the HIGHLY RESPECTED Chip Coffey and go get a life.

My response:

Elizabeth,
I think you are misunderstanding the article here. The letter/article was not written by me. It was from Kirby Robinson of http://eyeontheparanormal.blogspot.com/

I copied the letter here on GhostTheory because I found it interesting. So no, I didn’t write it.

I do however still believe that the PRS team’s ‘Paranomal State’ is a farce.

The show does not approach the paranormal in a scientific method. Take for example the scene of the “ghostly handprint” in the episode “Coal miner’s ghost”.

The first 36 seconds of the video is proof enough that these guys do not care for the true scientific method. Here you have an investigation taking place in a home of people who are reaching out and asking for help with their haunting. You then have the investigators, with their hi-tech equipment, pan around a room that is full of investigators, a psychic, the home owners and the production crew all bunched together in a small room and they spot a heat signature of a hand that is on the wall behind the psychic using their IR camera.



Paranormal State Coal Miner’s Ghost: “Ghost hand print”

I don’t know if you are familiar with how these cameras work, but when you place your hand on a cold or room temperature surface, it radiates your body heat and you will easily see the heat signature of your hand. It’s seen through the camera as a bright red/yellow/green image respectively to the heat composition of the object. In this case a human hand that has most of the heat concentrated in the palm area. Within a few seconds to minutes of the initial contact with the surface, the heat signature starts to cool down, the image will change from yellow/red to a more blueish image. Losing heat and starting to cool down, the heat signature will go from a strong red/yellow to a more cool blue. It will take a few minutes for the signature to fully go away.



PRS investigator putting his hand on the wall for comparison



Investigator’s fresh hand-print

In those images, the investigator claimed that there was no way the psychic could have produced the hand print at the time since:
A) Her hands were at her sides the whole time.

No evidence that she did have them there was provided. Not to say that she did it on purpose, but she might not have noticed touching the wall earlier

B) If she would have done it, it would be as brightly colored as his imprint.
While that is true, it does not rule out that someone else might have done it a half-hour ago and not notice.

The point of this post is not to deduce the PRS team as being a bunch of charlatans. The point of the post is to point out to the public that critical thinking is necessary. Especially when we have people who are seeking help in a case where mainstream science cannot help. The PRS’ conclusion that this was in fact a ghost print will have adverse effects. It could potentially traumatize the home owners and especially the children. Psychological scars can play out throughout their lives.

The PRS team never really analyzes the evidence. Take for example the show ‘MonsterQuest’. Every shred of evidence that is gathered and presented to the audience is put through several tests. Scientists from all walks give their professional analyses of the samples. It provides the viewers with 2 sides of the coin. Where as the ‘Paranormal State’ show never examines the evidence.
They cleverly edit the shadow in the corner that was just seen on camera, or the sound they heard and cut to a commercial break for the cliffhanger effect.

Now, about Chip Coffey.
You said: “Stop attacking these people and the HIGHLY RESPECTED Chip Coffey and go get a life.”

Again, I did not write the article. But I do have some reservations about Mr. Coffey. First off, I didn’t know him to be “Highly Respected”. I’m always amazed of how dead-on he is about his readings when he first steps into a house. Before I go that route, let’s look at your first statement:

“First of all I would like to start out by asking where is the proof that Chip Coffey recieved all the information prior?

Well I do not have solid proof of how the ‘Paranormal State’ crew handles their investigations, but my Guess is that it goes something like this:

Ryan: “OK, we have a case that involves a ghost of a little girl and a man”
PRS team: “OK, sounds like a cool case..”

Ryan (calling Chip): “OK so we are heading out to so-and-so’s place. They are reporting a haunting of a man and a little girl…”

Chip: “Alright, sounds good. “

When Chip Coffey arrives, Ryan Buell makes sure the cameras capture him arriving and him meeting with Chip, so that the audience can witness that he did not give out any information at that point. Chip goes into the house and starts to “read” the environment.

Chip: “I think I sense a scared little girl….and a mean man”

I’m not saying that’s what happens but doesn’t that sound like a more logical explanation of what really goes on behind the scenes? Doesn’t that sound like a more plausible thing the “Highly Respected” Chip Coffey might do? Again, critical thinking is in dire need.

The fact that Chip Coffey got a spinoff show called ‘Psychic Kids’ is proof that he is in it to exploit the exploitable. Here is a man who chooses to put kids on network television and feed them lies about their psychic abilities and try to help them by walking them through their newly found gift. Chip Coffey chose to ridicule most of these kids on network television for his own gain.

The Amateur Scientist has an excellent post about Chip Coffey and his shenanigans.

There were some emails and comments that understood what the post was about.
Take for example this comment:

nakuicalo said:
I have to admit that I did have these shows tivo’ed just to see what happened, and after reading all of this deception going on, you can tell when you watch the shows of all the fake sounds and fake editing that goes on… I will never watch again!

So to summarize, GhostTheory did not write this letter, but we still believe Paranormal State and Psychic kids to be a farce.

Let the hate-mail commence!

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I'm a writer, a runner, and a hell of a coffee drinker residing in Los Angeles. I'm currently working on a book about Doris Bither and her terrifying account of a haunting in Culver City, California. The case was dubbed "The Entity" and it stands to be one of the most controversial cases ever to be studied by parapsychologists.

  • http://www.faithbasedparanormalresearch.com Brenton Buckner

    One more thing

    “Further is the context of one’s belief system or narative valid over another?”

    This is what I am saying. Evidence is evidence if it is real. It doesn’t matter if it comes from an Atheist, a Christian or a monkey. If I have proof of something, and that proof stands up to reasonable scrutiny, then what does it matter if I believe in Jesus or if I believe in the Lizard of OZ? Why would anyone discredit me simply on the basis of my religion any more than they would descredit me because of what car I drive?

    That is what I do not understand. Someone would discredit evidence before even looking at it because I don’t subscribe to their view on religion? That isn’t a slam on “faith based research” that is a slam against who ever is that narrow minded. I look at evidence as evidence without regard for the context of that person’s beliefs. I will accept good evidence from an Atheist, a Wiccan, a Muslim, or a purple cow if it is good evidence and to be so narrow minded as to think that someone that doesn’t believe the same as you can’t collect good evidence is astoundingly stupid.

    It isn’t the faith based people who that narrow minded. I have never met anyone who claimed to be a faith based researcher who had that kind of attitude toward any group of people. That is why I find it so very funny that people insult us as being incappable of being scientific.

    BTW that is not directed at any particulat person…

  • Danny

    If I felt my home was haunted and I wanted to get a paranormal research team to come to my home and prove it, I would want an unbias approach to the investigation and any evidence the research team did uncover.

    I would not want a research group to come in to my home and automatically tell me my alleged paranormal problems are the work of the devil or demons because the existence of ghosts or some other paranormal explanation is not part of their belief system.

  • bellaboo

    excellent example, danny. i addressed why i ridicule the oxymoronic notion of “faith based research” in the other topic.

    true scientific method is not, cannot be and never will be faith-based.

    perhaps you should just change your wording from “faith-based research” to “a researcher who is religious”

    AFAIK, no one here KNOWS your faith, so no one is ridiculing it.

    it’s the notion of “faith based research” that is so amusing.

    hope that helps.

  • bellaboo

    That said, I don’t think one can discount certain compelling episodes such as the the PRS episode (”Sixth Sense”?)where you can distinctly hear a breathing sound entering the room of up to five investigators. If this were staged in any way, I’m sure that would have been leaked by now.

    i’m sorry, but that was one of the least compelling and most melodramatic episodes of all — and that’s saying a lot.

    i am unaware of this distinct breathing sound evidence that you’re referring to, but my first thought would be that it was from someone in the room (if not the cast, then the unseen crew), not a demon.

    YMMV

  • AUJT

    “That said, I don’t think one can discount certain compelling episodes such as the the PRS episode (”Sixth Sense”?)where you can distinctly hear a breathing sound entering the room of up to five investigators. If this were staged in any way, I’m sure that would have been leaked by now.”

    Nothing compelling there. If I recall correctly, they claim to hear breathing, cut to the laptop audio recording software and there’s no visual signal. They are implying evidence. There is so much wrong with this show that absolutely *nothing* they present can be looked upon as credible. *Nothing*.

    A lady claiming to be the mother (Shelly) of the boy (Matthew) in The Sixth Sense posted on A$E and basically said that if she’d known her address would be shown on TV she’d never allowed filming. MATTRACH (Shelly): ” If I would have known that our address (at that time) was going to be revealed, then I would have stopped it! I doubt that any parent would allow that. PRS was not even sure at that time if there was going to be a TV show. They said it was something they were going to try and do. It sounded like a long shot to me and I only was looking for help for Matthew. Shelley”
    Thread URL– http://boards.aetv.com/topic/Share-Your-Thoughts/Please-Protect-The/700011676&start=48

    Everything about Paranormal State is irresponsible!

  • AUJT

    “It isn’t the faith based people who that narrow minded.”

    Faith based people’s faith is based on something that there is no evidence for but they insist that their beliefs are true without question and without verification. Non faith based people (speaking in general terms of course)believe that there are numerous possibilities. Each possibility is either more or less likely than the others. Which is the more narrow of the two?

    “Would someone who isn’t going to be a complete a-hole about it explain to me why everyone is hostile toward me because of the term “faith based research”? What do you think it means?”

    I see no hostility.

    “Faith based research” doesn’t mean science based research. By definition it is biased towards one’s unsubstantiated belief/faith. BTW, if you *know* something to be true you do not need faith.

    Science methodology is the best thing that we have to find the truth about anything.

    The PRS uses chiropractors instead of real doctors, priests that are anti pope/catholic, known hucksters i.e. Loraine Warren, lying “psychics” i.e. Chip Coffey ad nauseum. You want to get in good with them, do your “faith based research”. You want want the company of people that are searching for the truth, hang out with the people that honestly side with science.

  • Jim Pratt

    Golly! you folks are SO OBTUSE!!! Tell me WHY could’nt there be “an other side”? Sure, I believe in God and practice my Christian faith as best I can.. To top THAT one off, I’m not a smart man.. But WHY could’nt there be an “other side” that comes to Earth, or hauntings or PEOPLE THAT CAN PICK UP ON THESE “ghosts”??? Fact is, the Catholic’s call him (Jesus) the “HOLY GHOST”! ! I myself are just your “run-of-the-mill” everyday Christian who BELIEVES in lets say “spirits” that still roam the Earth.. For what reason they do this, I don’t know.. I’ve had some “REAL FUNNY THINGS” happen to me! Scientists even try to “BLOCK” the BELIEF IN GOD!!! They make “shows” on many a channel calling it “history” yet when I watch them, they’re trying to “DEBUNK” God!!! SURE, “FAITH” is the biggest thing in a religious life!! Why do they, under “a fake title” on the history programs, trying to “undermine” folks faith? It’s not a good thing to do! I love some science’s too! Sure, I like things that I can “SINK MY TEETH” into! BUT, I’m not so OBTUSE to think that there is NOTHING ELSE OUT THERE!!! Jim Pratt – you have my E-mail address.. Here’s my phone number too 909-790-0758 I’m totally disabled and sit in a chair all day! I’m ALWAYS HOME! Oh, I have a doctors appointmen Friday the 17… Sorry…
    JP

  • the truth

    why do you guys bash chip to me he seems like a good guy.
    i could be wrong,but like everything on the net how do we know what is true and what is not.
    you cant tell because it comes from second hand sources.
    unless you actually seen or heard it happen how can you believe it.
    we are entitled to our opinions but that what they are opinions and BTW i love prs it a great show the even have a movie coming out called american ghost hunter

  • Michael

    Wow, if that trailer for American Ghost Hunter doesn’t look like a total vanity project to others… than I must be the only one who can see Ryan Buel’s cracks. I don’t doubt his initial beliefs, but his ego has gotten out of hand.. but that’s typically what happens. You can start out honest and genuine, but celebrity and money and endorsements win out when you’re making a show that makes it’s dollars on “shock value.” It happened to ghost hunters, it was obvious with PS from the start, and Ghost Adventures were there long-before they even started filming.

  • the truth

    Michael what is your deal,are you negative about your moms cooking to.
    so what he is in it for the money, wheres the proof?
    every one is a critic nowadays.
    honestly how well do you know Ryan or anyone from prs.
    you don’t hell i don’t either but people like good TV. so what it has sound effects. look at ghost adventures they main guy yells all the time shut up you hear that? no you moron your yelling.
    what i am saying is some people like different things but don’t comment on others comment unless you have a good reason it OK to have a opinion but please the movie is not even out yet and hear goes people open mouth and stupid comes out.

  • bellaboo

    michael, i agree with you 100% on the ego thing.

    money and endorsements are what these types live for. buell was attempting to make MTV production inroads and trying to start some other show prior to getting PS.

    and now, even if PS bites the dust, he and the motley crew of paranormal panderers he’s helped promote will still have it made thanks to all of their conventions and gatherings for which they charge big bucks.

    i’m simply astounded that people pay good money to go to those kinds of things, particularly since there is ABSOLUTELY NO EVIDENCE ANYPLACE that ghosts/demons even exist.

    by the by – isn’t it interesting how the more rabid fans of the PS show (and/or chip coffey) are all about attempting to discredit and/or smack-talk anyone who doesn’t necessarily appreciate the “contributions” that the likes of buell and PRS/coffey and other media psychics have made to the paranormal community??

  • bellaboo

    speaking of money and endorsements – have you seen all of the “events” AGH/PRS/chip coffey and gang have going on?

    http://bellabootoo.blogspot.com/2009/06/warriors-who-help-people.html

    http://bellabootoo.blogspot.com/2009/08/psychics-investigating-famous-haunted.html

  • the truth

    the problem with every one who bashes psr is just jealous because there lives suck and are mad because your sorry rears aren’t the ones making the money.get a life losers.
    instead of being hateful and mad because you have done nothing with your lives and have nothing better to do then hang out on here writeing your garbage,here’s a tip get a life and a girlfriend and move out your moms basement. yes that was for the two losers bellaboo and Michael who have posted almost on every post on here.
    really boys it time to move on.

  • bellaboo

    wow, coming from someone with such a way with words as “the truth” — i dunno about you michael, but i’m just crushed.

    oh, and sorry “the truth”, but i’m not a guy. i reckon you’ll just have to break out some sexist insults to keep my self-esteem down at the crushing depths where you’ve sent it with your lively remarks.

  • andrewkeeler

    God The truth? Please you and jim pratt go and just kill yourselves and do this planet and evolution a favor! Its Aboslute fucking Ignorant aholes like you that have stymied the human races progression since the beggining of time! You ignore any fact that argues with your faith or that you plain just dont like. You would rather have faith in a God that more that likely thinks that your an ignorant ahole as well or blindly follow some moron on TV. Reality TV? Anyone who belives there is the SLIGHTEST bit of REALITY in TV should seriously just buy a faith bullet and eat it. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!! USE YOUR FREAKING HEADS!!! Its Amazing how these people claim that Javier is ignorant and yet Didnt even read the article that clearly states HE DIDNT FUCKING WRITE THE DAMN LETTER YOU WASTES OF OXYGEN!!! God hates you and wants nothing to do with you. You know how I know that? Cuase he told me!!! Oh also your dead relatives hate you too !! Cuase im a psychic!!! In fact the probablitly of me being God is just as likely using faith based reasearch so i hearby proclaim myslef god!!! now do as i command and never breed!