It’s difficult to predict what will happen next in ghost hunting. These are my guesses.
Media-driven attention is fading, leaving mostly serious researchers in the field. That’s a good thing.
TV and Movies
TV producers and networks will seek more sensational, adrenaline-spiking ways to present ghost hunting. We’ll see more silly a few unabashed “freak shows.” (We’ve already seen too much.)
Finally, after exhausting every possible idea, TV producers will move on to something else.
I believe Ghost Hunters will be among the last canceled. (I first said that in 2013. Now, as I’m updating these Q&As in late 2016, that’s exactly what’s happened.)
Ghost Hunters retained a large following of dedicated fans. Many of them will remain loyal to the brand, and to the show’s stars.
Look for independently produced TV shows with very low budgets. They’ll air on YouTube or streaming services like Roku.
For the foreseeable future, fans may have to find those shows in an uncurated hodge-podge of good and bad productions. Nevertheless, I think indie produced (and aired) shows will replace traditional TV altogether.
Ghost-related films will maintain their appeal. At Halloween, movies will portray haunted places in extreme, unrealistic ways. That’s what audiences want.
In general, ghost hunters need more reliable, educational resources. Too many people come into ghost hunting for fame, money, and power over others.
That produces drama. It also attracts con men and other criminals. We reached that phase of the bell curve around 2006.
The good news is, now that ghost hunting isn’t so trendy, many charlatans have moved on to other fields.
Revisiting Past Mistakes
I’ve been in this field for over 30 years. The more I study ghosts, the more I realize how little we know. I have to revise my theories regularly.
For example, I spent six years studying “ghost orbs,” and had to admit my early theories were wrong. It’s far more difficult to create a convincing false orb than I’d thought. (Please, test this for yourself. And then tell others.)
Unfortunately, mine was one of the earliest ghost-related websites. So, my mistaken theories influenced a generation of ghost hunters. That’s pretty embarrassing.
Of course, I’m not alone in my stumbles and mistakes. We’re all throwing labels — verbal shorthand — on phenomena we don’t really understand.
Maybe We’re Looking in the Wrong Places
We have no scientific evidence that ghostly anomalies are caused by actual ghosts.
We need to be flexible and open minded. Avoid dogma.
If we were on the right track with this research, we’d have seen clearer, more repeatable results at least 10 years ago.
We need to expand our research to look at far more phenomena that could influence our results, not just anomalies.
In the future, I believe we’ll learn more about haunted places thanks to advanced ghost hunting tools and techniques.
We’ll see more specialized cameras and voice recorders. Reliable heat and cold sensors and other devices will be within most ghost hunters’ budgets.
I’m interested in affordable infrasound detectors. We’re overlooking an important explanation for some hauntings. Every site should be check for elevated EMF, carbon monoxide, and infrasound.
The on-off phenomena with loosened flashlight connections is interesting. That technique needs refinement and standardization. In fact, I’d like more devices that can return binary results (on/off) for communication.
The subject of Frank Sumption’s boxes, usually called “Frank’s boxes,” is volatile. I don’t think we’ve even scratched the surface of what’s going on there.
What makes some of those boxes (and clones) produce astonishing results, while others do nothing? So far, we don’t know.
Ask “What If…?”
In general, we need to ask more “what if..?” questions. I’m not certain we’ve identified all categories of ghostly anomalies.
For example, as I’m writing this, few people check subnormal EMF levels.
Hot spots receive scant attention, compared with cold spots.
Personally, I’m continuing to focus on geographical and historical patterns. They might explain and even predict paranormal activity.
Repeating paranormal patterns could show us why some locations are haunted.
I’m also working on techniques to better understand personal dynamics that can influence hauntings.
Going Far Out on a Limb…
What’s might be next in ghost hunting? Lots of things.
I’m looking at something few are willing to consider.
As of late 2016, I’m revisiting one of my long-time theories. I believe that many ghosts are alive and well in their own time, in a parallel reality that some people are accessing at certain locations and at certain times.
With the broad introduction of multiple interacting worlds (or realities) as science, not science fiction, there may be some overlap between things like the Mandela Effect and paranormal research.
There is so much to investigate about ghosts and haunted places, I feel as if we’ve barely begun these studies.
But, we’ve opened many possibilities. Perhaps you’re the best person to answer “what’s next?”, as each researcher adds more to what we know… and what we realize we don’t know, yet.