30 March 2020

(4 Minute Video) - Does a Spiritualist Medium's Anecdote Prove The Afterlife?


The codeword claim is almost always the worst kind of evidence and made more magical by believers who pass on the story as evidence. 

Anecdotal evidence is the worst kind of claim to evidence. 

Even if it happened straight away in your story, it doesn't confirm your faith. 

Check out Rob at
https://twitter.com/RobLesterFilms

27 March 2020

REVIEW: Most Haunted - Series 1 Episode 5 (25th June 2002) Leap Castle, Coolderry, County Offaly, Ireland


As I write this it is the 27th March 2020, the world is on lock down, due to a world wide pandemic. Thousands of people are dead due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus outbreak, the streets are empty, it literally feels like we are living in a post apocalyptic world, people in massive queues to get bread and toilet tissue, people scared to even get close to each other in fear of catching this deadly disease. But with all that happening I have decided to do something even worse! I have decided to review another classic episode of Most Haunted.

I have also stuck to my promise that I would not review any of the new Most Haunted stuff unless it got over 100,000 views, their new stuff at most is getting between 10,000 to 15,000 views, which is hardly surprising.

We travel back in time to Series 1 Episode 5 (25th June 2002) Leap Castle, Coolderry, County Offaly, Ireland. A time when bog rolls were aplenty, brand name bread cost just 50p a loaf, and Karl Beattie still had his original hair, long before the transplant. So with that, let's take a look at the blurb.

"The Most Haunted team travel to the Republic of Ireland to visit historic Leap Castle. Legend says the castle is home to a half-man, half-animal elemental. The Most Haunted crew hold a séance in the infamous Bloody Chapel."

This is the first episode of Most Haunted I will have reviewed since the death of Derek Acorah, it will be interesting to watch him, back in his prime.

This episode is one of the Most Haunted Unseen episodes, I don't recall exactly what that meant, I assume it just meant it had a few extra scenes thrown in? I grabbed it off youtube, so what can you do.

We start off with Yvette and for some reason she seems really aggressive in her intro, I am guessing she was trying to get across how scary and dangerous this place was.


Many a cow had to die for that long leather coat.

She tells us that the castle is home to a "half-man, half-animal elemental" ghost. I hope Derek Acorah gets possessed by this. I wonder if in the afterlife Derek has met up with all these ghosts who possessed him? Even the famous monkey from episode 1 I think it was? That would be interesting to see.


Now although Yvette Fielding does look fetching in her red leather trousers, as a vegan I cannot approve.

She sits down with actor Jason Karl who is playing the part of a parapsychologist to talk about the castle. Worth noting that despite being an employed actor playing the part of a parapsychologist, I give him credit as being one of the more skeptical people who played this part, and as such was many times more credible than those who followed him. And in case you didn't know, he was only fired from the show, because he became too popular with the viewers. Remember this whole show was supposed to be a vehicle to relaunch Yvette's career. As history now tells us that failed and Derek Acorah quickly became the true star of the show.

Jason explains how the elemental ghost is created by negative energy. He also talks about these "coil" types of energy that only appear in photographs, as always a real skeptic knows the cause of such "manifestations" are usually a hair near the lens, or the camera strap hanging down, funny how these images pretty much disappeared from the genre as cameras on Smartphones became more prevalent and of higher quality.

Yvette tells us how she is scared for the arrival of Derek Acorah who apparently has "no idea about Leap Castle at all", well that's 4 minutes in and we get our first direct lie. Derek worked as a spiritualist medium, the idea that he would have "no idea" about Leap Castle is ridiculous. It was his job, it was his life. He knew.


We then get an interview with Sean Ryan the owner of the castle, and boy is this a treat, he is like the character Ted from The Fast Show.



Sean does a decent job "selling" his tourist attraction. We also get a quick piece to camera from a small child.


Now to make you feel old, she is nearly 30 years old now! And has had a career as a professional dancer and teacher. A seven times provincial champion and a top 10 World championship medal holder for eight consecutive years!

Check out her page at https://academy.riverdance.com/blog/instructor/ciara-callanan-ryan/

You could argue that she has had a more successful career after appearing on Most Haunted than Yvette Fielding has, after all Ciera only appears once on the show, and Yvette is still trying to make a living from pretending to see ghosts.

Ok I have lost my train of thought now, yes we were watching a program about fake ghosts.

We see some footage from Karl's camera, he is filming in the day, worth noting Yvette calls him "our producer Karl". He films a burning fire from afar. This is something that any good ghost hunter should do more often, just film a fire burning, with a bit of luck you will get at least a single frame of something in the fire that looks like a face, purely a pareidolia effect, but it would look great for your gullible fans.


Completely pointless segment and totally understandable why this got cut from the original airing.

Yvette is still wondering around doing pieces to camera, great to see them do some effort with production too, some nice shots with candles burning and so on.


Jason Karl announces that the battery in his camera has gone dead. He also clearly states that he has been using it all day. That's how batteries work mate, you charge them, you use them, they go dead. To try an make this some kind of paranormal event is ridiculous and just shows a total lack of intelligence, but then again it could also be that you are doing it deliberately as part of your "gas lighting" of the audience.


Rick Fielding of the Fielding family claims he has heard a whisper noise in his ear. Jason Karl then pulls out an EMF meter and says there is a high reading right where they are, the fact he is surrounded by people holding electrical equipment all giving off electromagnetic fields seems beyond him.

15 minutes in and the investigation proper finally starts, Derek has now appeared.


Derek looking smart gets straight into his act as they go up some stairs, and he claims he can see a figure, and is very descriptive of her.


I really had forgotten how good Derek was at describing made up ghosts. But there is also the problem that everything he says just sounds like innuendo.

Derek is now describing the ghost as not just spirit but as inter dimensional, whatever that is supposed to mean. The ghost is changing shape, so it's an inter-dimensional, shape shifting being. We then hear the owner of the Castle off camera getting a bit nervous and warning Derek about the elemental spirit.

Derek then comes up with the name "Sir Henry Darby", an on screen graphic confirms the name and that he was born at Leap Castle in 1749 and served as an Admiral in the British Navy.

The funny thing is that back in the day, when this show would air, you would have the believers quickly declaring that this was proof that Derek was legit, and you had skeptics quickly checking the internet to see how easy such information could be found out, and then the battle between the two opposing groups. I took part in such battles, and I am a bit embarrassed that I did now. It so obviously faked, and although I knew it was faked, I spent way too much time proving it was all fake. I was one of those skeptics.

If this was to air today, many many less people would believe in Derek as they did in the past, and only the hardcore would really get into arguments trying to prove it all one way or another. I think it is partly a shame that both believers and skeptics got so annoyed with each other, when realistically Derek was just playing the part of a character on a TV show, no different to Jason Karl playing the part of parapsychologist.

But we did take it all too seriously back in the day, non more so than me.

Now when I see him come up with a name, I really have no interest to check if it's a real name or not, or how easy it is to research, it really doesn't matter.


This guy starts talking about how some batteries are running down and how there was some audio issues, of course the presumption is that this is caused by the ghosties.

Derek has found a small room, which has a ghost monk in it. Derek is in full "Degsie Mode" here. Of course what he is saying matches up to some Monk who was at the castle hundreds of years ago.

Worth noting here how they regularly seem to switch from a black and white filter to REAL night vision mode.

Great way to spot night vision is the eyes.


Of course it is completely pointless as the area is well lit, there are candles lit everywhere, a big roaring fire. It is not dark in any way, so this is purely a production choice to make things seem more spooky.

Karl is with Rick and is desperately trying to get him to have a seance. Rick is not interested though.

We then get an "orb". I had forgotten about them, boy did they go on about them a lot back in the day.


Yvette does her best Blair Witch Project shot, but the problem is that in the Blair Witch Project, it was done with full colour.


We then get another orb shot, Yvette proudly declares on voice over that Orbs are the first signs of a ghost manifestation.

Karl and Rick are doing their seance stuff, but it comes across more as just two nervous blokes having a laugh on camera, which ironically is exactly what they were.

Yvette is now pretending to cry as a ghost is nearby, putting her trained actress skills to full use there.

Remember when Yvette pretended that Harry Styles tried to seduce her when he was 16? About as likely as Karl claiming to be the worlds last samurai.

I've started to get bored now, not enough Derek. Need a good possession to get me interested again.
Come on Degsie, you can do it.

Yvette is with Stuart, and Stuart closes a door and Yvette has a break down and starts crying because she is so scared. All very pathetic and over acted.

Karl is with Marcel, whoever that is.


Derek has seemingly disappeared as Karl heads off to the cellar.
And is filming orbs. I will not even waste my time explaining them, if you don't know by now what they are you never will.

The investigation ends, and we get the post investigation comments. I wonder if Derek went home early on the night after he did his little spot? Also in the post investigation comments, Jason Karl reveals that he told ALL of the crew where they were going before the investigation and wonders if the expectations of phenomena and that auto suggestion might have had an effect on people.

Jason Karl then summarises all of the nights events, and gives a skeptical opinion.


This shot of Derek really needs to be made into a meme.

Well the episode ends, and it was an ok episode, the lack of a possession by Derek really hurt the episode, and he hardly appeared in the episode. As such I can only score this a 3/10. Unlike the first few episodes of the season, this was definitely a filler episode.

Review by Jon Donnis

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By Jon Donnis

24 January 2020

A start in how to expose a fake psychic/medium.


Pick a psychic, any psychic.

For the sake of this article, I will use the word psychic as a catch all word to describe anyone who claims psychic, paranormal or medium powers. So please no comments about me not knowing the difference.

One of the problems I face, is that I receive a lot of messages, either by email, or through social media. They usually go something like this.

"Have you heard of psychic Bob McBobberson, he is such a fraud, I wish you would expose him."

(Disclaimer: Bob McBobberson is a made up name, however if there is a real world, self proclaimed psychic by that name, I guarantee you he is a fake.)

I then face a dilema, if that psychic is a small time internet only psychic, with a few hundred followers, if I expose him, and put his name on this site, I will inadvertently give him publicity, and he can then claim to be in the same league as many of the big name psychics I have exposed.

I have literally seen psychics use being exposed on this site, as a badge of honour to say to their followers to gain sympathy. So as you can imagine, the last thing I want to do is help give a psychic publicity, even if I am exposing them along the way. You see believers will see such an article, and not read it, they will instantly dismiss it because it is written by me and published on this site. And clearly that is not a good thing for me, or for skepticism in general.

For bigger name psychics this is not a problem, as their names are already out there, and often I will get such a name thrown at me as someone who has never been exposed. Usually when I hear that, I will find a clip of them, and expose how they do it. Job done. My site ranks very highly in google, and their fans tend to read such articles.

It is much easier to reveal the truth to a fan of Gordon Smith for example, than a fan of Bob McBobberson, for the fan of Smith will have invested a lot of time and money in that psychic, going to shows, buying books and so on, so they will want to prove me wrong, and will try to find flaws in what I write, so will actually read my article. Of course the hope is, by doing that they realise they were fooled, get angry and never spend a penny of that psychic again.

Whereas fans of Bob McBobberson will be the types of believer that jump from one psychic to the next, again and again, trying to get that "fix" to feed their addiction.

So what I want to do here, is try to help people understand how to expose a psychic themselves, and at the very least, see through some of the tricks they would have previously fallen for.

And with that I am going to try to talk you through my thought process when I am faced with exposing a medium.

If you read through my replies to comments on this site, or on the forum, you will notice that I always offer a challenge to someone who is defending a psychic. That challenge is always the same.

Show me an unedited recording/video or a psychic you are 100% convinced is real, and I guarantee you 100% that I can show you how it is done.

Now the first thing you should notice here is what I am asking for, I am asking for an unedited recording. The reason is I understand how television works. When Colin Fry used to record his TV show, he would record for a few hours, but the final show would only be 25 minutes. His readings would seem incredibly accurate and the responses of the people being read, would completely validate what he had told them, whether that was in post show interviews, or even the affirmative nods on their faces during the show.

When making television, all entertainment shows need certain reactions from the audience. On X-Factor for examples, the warm up guy will often ask the crowd to give a standing ovation that can be filmed and used later. And peoples reactions will be filmed and shown out of order. There is no difference when it comes to psychics and their TV shows.

If a woman is shown nodding affirmatively to something the psychic has said, or crying, or some other emotion, you never truly know if that is a direct reaction to what the psychic has said, or if that has been edited to make the psychic seem more accurate. You are witnessing an edit, and every time the camera switches, there is a chance you are not seeing something in real time. So when I ask for an unedited recording, all that means is that it hasn't been professionally produced.

Often I will take such unedited records direct from a psychic's own youtube page. Because often they themselves are proud of their own work, and know that 99% of people who watch it, wont realise what is going on.

So when judging a psychic that you believe is real, or at least think are doing something you cant easily explain, make sure you are not watching something with multiple cameras, edits and cuts. So forget professionally produced TV shows.

One thing to note here, there is always a chance of hot reading, whether that is researching someone who has booked a reading using their name, email, whatever, there are endless ways to research someone. Just look at the latest Facebook scandal with data being sold. There are so many ways to find out about people in the world of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and so on.

But let's assume the person has not been researched and the psychic really has no idea who they are and has no prior knowledge on them, this reading could be one on one, or it could be someone picked out from an audience. How do we start to spot a fake?

The absolute easiest way to spot a fake psychic is if they tell the client to only answer yes or no. This is the oldest trick in the book, a psychic does this so they can claim that they are not fishing for information, or that the client is telling them things and so on. The truth is the complete opposite, the psychic by forcing the client to only answer in one of two ways is taking complete control of the reading, they are able to frame it in such a way that most times regardless of how the client reacts, it will end up being a hit.

Let me give you a simple example.

Psychic: Did your Grandfather smoke?
Client: No
Psychic: Yes he is telling me it disgusted him.
Client: Correct.

So the person then comes away thinking the psychic knew that your Grandfather didn't like people who smoked. Let's try again.

Psychic: Did your Grandfather smoke?
Client: Yes
Psychic: Yes I can see him sat in his favourite chair smoking and having a whiskey.
Client: Correct

Now regardless of how the client reacts, the psychic can follow it up with a statement supposedly from the dead Grandfather.

Now if the psychic hadn't ordered the client to only answer yes or no, they may have added information in their answer, which then would have taken away what the psychic said in reply.

Psychic: Did your Grandfather smoke?
Client: Yes, he would enjoy a smoke with a glass of whiskey in the evening.
Psychic: Yes he is showing me that now.
Client: ok.

Can you see the difference, now the client has given the psychic more information, which gives the psychic less to repeat back, of course sometimes this does happen, and the psychic will simply repeat back the information the client told him perhaps later in the reading.

So this is a good place to start, if the psychic is controlling the reading completely they will tell you to answer yes or no, so if you hear that, they are a fraud, time to go home. Game over.

Now if they don't tell you that, then you need to keep track of what the psychic says, and what the client says.

This is why I will always have a reading transcribed, it makes it much easier to keep track.

Now if you do this yourself, the easiest thing you can do is count how many questions the psychics asks. Simple as that.

A real psychic would not need to ask any questions at all. Not even "would you understand that?" By asking "Would you understand that?" The psychic is FISHING, they need to know their reading is going the right direction so they can continue, if they do not know, then their reading could go in the complete wrong direction and they end up looking a fool.

If the person reacts in a negative manner to that question, it allows the medium to change directions, they can tell the client that they need to "take that home with you", this basically is their way out, they are getting rid of you. They then change the direction of the reading or end it completely. You go home, you ask your relatives a version of what the psychic has said, if it is vaguely right, then you are amazed because there is no way he could have known about it, and he couldn't have picked it up from you, if he is wrong, it is just forgotten about. Either way the psychic doesn't have to deal with the result.

In the inner circle, this is known by psychics as the "Take Home Escape", and pretty much all psychics use it. Think of it like a fishing net, you have a small net. Psychic asks you if you understand the number 50. You have no idea. So you go home and ask your parents, because there is two of them, their net is twice as big, so a wider chance of success. That number 50 might be the number of the house someone lived in 40 years, the year someone was born/died, joined the army. If your parents don't know, they ask their siblings, their net is double the size for each added person to the question, and so on.

One of the reasons it is called "fishing for information" is the wider you cast the net, the more chance you will catch a fish.

So as you transcribe the reading, every time a sentence ends in a question mark, note it down, and count them up. Then at the end of the reading, just read through them all, and ask yourself, why is the psychic asking question after question.

It might look something like this.
Would you understand that?
Is your mother still alive?
Did he work in the steel industry?
I'm getting the number 4, was he 1 of 4 children, or did he have 4 siblings?
Did he die of something to do with the chest area?

Next, take out everything the psychic says, and only read the responses from the client, note down all the information they give the psychic. This truly is the easiest way to see how much the client says compared to how much the psychic says.

Notice how often the client will ask no questions at all. How strange is that when you really think about it? You pay to see a psychic, they claim that they are speaking to your dead relative, yet you never ask a question or at least never get a direct response to a question, yet the psychic asks you question after question.

If you can separate what the psychic says and what the client says, this really is a great way to see the direction the information flows, and it is never from the psychic to the client.

Of course there is much much more that can be analysed in readings, but this truly is the easiest way to expose a psychic and a great way to start doing it yourself.

So to summarize.
1. Write down and count how many questions the psychic asks.
2. Write down all the information the client gives the psychic.

Compare the two. Does it still look like the psychic told the client everything? Or does it seem more like the client gave the information and the psychic just repeated it back and elaborated a bit.

Now I have given you a starting point, why not use this knowledge. You want to expose a psychic. Do as I suggest. Find that unedited raw recording, transcribe it, and go through it.

You can open on a free blog on Blogger.com or Wordpress or something like that, and publish it.

You can even drop me a line and ask me to look it over first, to make sure it all looks good, I will happily do that, and even give you advice and help you.

The more we expose psychics the better, but this is just one site, I would much prefer an army of 100s of people all with their own little blogs, all publishing articles, exposing the methods.

So you have a choice, sit on your backside and do nothing, or help me to help you and others.

By Jon Donnis

23 January 2020

The secrets behind the Spiritualist Church Mediums


A few days ago I published an article in the hope that people could start to look at readings from Psychics/Mediums and by using some basic knowledge start to figure out what was really going.

If you haven't yet, please read that article by clicking the link below.
http://www.badpsychics.com/2018/03/a-start-in-how-to-expose-fake.html

That article made a few assumptions, the main one being that the medium had no prior knowledge on any person being read, and was not being fed any information either before or during the reading.

One of the problems I face is when someone emails me and they say they saw a medium in a spiritualist church, and they never asked for any money, yet they were incredibly accurate. How do I explain that?

Well firstly just because a medium does not charge, does not mean he or she is not making any money, many spiritualist churches will pay mediums to perform, and of course the bigger the name, the bigger the paycheck. All spiritualist churches will ask for donations, so even if you only have 20 people in some small room above a library in Dudley, that can quickly translate into some money, I've witnessed pensioners throw £20 notes into the collection tray before.

But often Spiritualist churches are just an easy way for a medium to drum up trade so they can sell private readings which is where the big bucks come in. It also gives them a way to appear more spiritual, more honest, after all we are told that all mediums are only in it for the money right? So a medium doing a gig in a spiritualist church whereby he might only get his travel expenses covered, he must be the real deal?

But like I said, it is all about selling those private readings, and what better way than in a spiritualist church whereby many of the readings are scarily accurate. So accurate that you simply cant put it down to cold reading. But how is this possible when then medium may never have even performed at that Spiritualist church before?

The answer? Something called "The Book", also known as "The Blue Book", "The Data", "The Info", "The Run Down", and many more names.

In Lemar Keenes book "The Psychic Mafia" he referred to "The Blue Book", this was where all the information was kept on the regular attendees.

In my investigations over the past 15+ years, one thing I have realised is that pretty much every Spiritualist Church will have this book. Now please understand, that the word "Book" will conjure a very specific image in your head, instead you need to see this as not just a book, but a collection of information, this could be a notepad with hand written notes on, a Rolodex with individual cards on, a USB stick files with info on. I even heard of a single document file being held on a google drive and that being "The Book" of that Spiritualist church. It varies from Church to Church.

One person at each Church will be in charge of the book, often it is not the official secretary, or treasurer, or even the President of the church, usually it is someone who they themselves claim psychic powers, but they will often lead proceedings in the Church, and often are in charge of booking the mediums to perform.

If you are a regular experienced medium, and you are to perform at a Church, you will be contacted by the booker, and given the date, and if everything is agreed, when you arrive at the Church, before the service, you will require some private time to do some meditation, this is usually when the medium is given the book, so they can prepare for the show.

If you are a newer medium, you will need to be introduced to the right people as you go along. This is why often young mediums will have a mentor, or seem to be hand picked, they are literally being groomed and told the secrets. But since these are secrets, everything is done very privately, and you need to earn your trust, and as such younger, newer mediums would not even be told of the existence of the book, and instead just be expected to go out there and cold read, to earn their stripes.

I know of people who worked very high up at the SNU, in administerial positions who were never let in on the gig, and they went their whole lives believing that mediumship was real. People who ran the Churches would not be in on it. This is why the SNU (Spiritualists' National Union) would always want to control and be in charge of any Spiritualist Church, they would literally confiscate the deeds to Churches, and ban any of their mediums from performing at any non SNU Churches. Of course I would never claim that any SNU Affiliated Church would ever use the Book, or use any means of prior research on their congregation.
Although I once attended a SNU Spiritualist Church and someone realised who I was, and the medium who was due to perform, mysteriously had to leave and the service was left without a medium. Very strange coincidence.

You thought Scientology was a secretive organisation, trust me Spiritualist Churches are way more secretive.

So you can understand that a medium can sit down for 30 minutes before a show, look at the book, and have enough information to go out there and have an incredibly accurate performance.

But how is this book collated I hear you ask?

Well first of all have you ever been to a Spiritualist Church? if the answer is no, then DON'T, stay away. Don't even go for a laugh or because a friend wants you to see what it is all about. Do not waste your time.

If the answer is yes, have you ever noticed they have a big remembrance book that you can leave a message to your loved ones in spirit?

"I miss you Grandpa Joe, your Grandchildren all love you, and are happy you can now walk again in spirit. Lots of love from Peter, Lucy and Steve"

It is full of messages like that. So instantly you have a fair bit of information about Grandpa Joe and his family, right. Imagine how much information you could collect on a regular attendee who comes every single week!

Have you ever tried to sit in a chair right at the front? You will often be told these seats are reserved. They are reserved for the regulars, and yes they will sit in the same chair every week. And guess who often gets the readings. Yep the people at the front.

These people aren't plants, they are not in on the gig, they are just the most loyal followers of the Church. These will be the people who will have the most information recorded about them in the book. They will also be the most generous financially to the Church, and they will be the ones most addicted to the drug of mediumship, and getting that one final message.

An example of how information might be stored on someone.
Dora McMichaels, Seat 1C
Age 89, Widow to Bert McMichaels, died aged 74, Heart Attack. Liked toy trains. Irish Accent, scared of spiders, liked Whiskey and Cigar.
1 of 5 sisters, Gertrude (Gertie), Margaret (Margy), Susan, Elizabeth.
4 Children, 8 Grandchildren. Grandson Michael (Motorbike Accident, 24)
Irish/Scottish Backgroud. Singer in youth.

From just that, a medium could easily drag out a 20 minute reading, create stories, describe characters and so on. And as this reading goes on, someone is talking notes seeing if she gives any new info to add to the book.

In one Spiritualist Church I went to, I spotted hidden microphones, one in the middle of each line of chairs. And before the show started as people were all kept waiting, what were they doing? You guessed it, they were talking about who they hoped the medium would bring through from spirit.

So one security camera on the ceiling, hidden microphone, and someone sat in the office with a notepad and pen, and you suddenly have another level in information collection, this is especially useful if you have first time visitors.

In the old days they would have a stooge at each service, who would pretend to be one of the people attending, they would strike up conversations, listen in on what people were saying, and then make little notes when no one was looking.

So you don't need fancy technology, although it helps, just ask Simon Peters, he is still wearing that headset even after I exposed him. Oh well.

The point of all of this is that often when you go to a Spiritualist Church you are seeing hot reading, ever wondered why some mediums have such a high accuracy rate at their local Church, but as soon as they are away from that and doing hotel function room shows, their accuracy rate plummets and they are back to asking endless questions. Well now you know.

The Spiritualist Church is just another way for you to be fooled by people peddling promises of immortality, but at the end of the day you will just end up poorer.

Stay Away.

By Jon Donnis.

22 January 2020

Hot Reading in the 21st Century - How the modern medium cheats!


Recently I have written articles on a number of topics, in the hope of educating people and helping people fight back against the scam that is the psychic reading and/or Mediumship.

Catch up on those by clicking the links below.
How to expose a medium yourself.
and
Spiritualist Church Medium Secrets.

Today I want to take a closer look at how modern mediums will hot read their victims using modern. technology, and how you can take steps to prevent this, if you are still determined to visit these grief vampires.

In the Church Mediums article I spoke about "The Blue Book" method of hot reading, well this very old fashioned method works great in Spiritualist Churches, when you have the same people attending every week. But what about when a medium hires a function room in a hotel, or a library, where they will most likely be faced with people they have not seen before. Well many more experienced mediums will just stick to cold reading, especially if they have gig after gig every night of the week. It is simply not worth the hassle and time to employ stooges, use recording equipment and so on. Just go on stage, use a few pre-prepared characters which always seem to hit, like the young man who died on the motorbike, or the old man with emphysema, and so on. Go to enough shows and these made up characters seem to appear rather regularly.

It has been alleged that Sally Morgan employs various methods as well as cold reading, one being to get everyone to leave a message for a dead loved one in a bowl, which she will then pick out later in the show to connect with. Use your imagination here, and you can figure out what could possibly be going on. Not to mention the whole scandal of the ear piece which she denied using, then there was video of her removing this non existent ear piece, so she said that was for stage direction, and so on, a legal case against the Daily Mail, big pay out cause they couldn't prove it and so on.

Regardless of that, any time you see ANY medium perform using a madonna style headset be warned, despite what they claim, there is usually more going on. I saw that first hand at a Simon Peters show, when his mic picked up the secret feed he was getting in his ear.

No medium needs a head set, or head phones, or anything like that. They can hold a mic. It is real easy. Also beware of mediums with long hair, that also covers a multitude of sins.

These are all old school techniques, but I want to show you the new school techniques.

So you are on Facebook, and you hear of a new up and coming medium, he or she has been getting rave reviews, so what do you do? You go follow a page or join a group set up by said medium, you might add them as a friend on facebook, or you might end up making friends of other people in the group and you add them.

Suddenly your entire history is available to that medium should they want it.
And what do you do when a show is announced? You click "going" to show you are going to the show.

The moment you joined that group, followed that page, or added anyone vaguely connected to that medium, you lose all right to say "they had no way of knowing......"

Even the most careful of facebook user will not have covered every base when trying to protect their data.
You know those little games you play, those apps you give permission to, to give you a horoscope reading, that data is for sale. For all you know a medium you follow created that app, and guess what, when you gave that app permission, you gave it every detail on your account.

So right now I want you to go to Facebook. Using the menu, find the link to settings, then click on APPS.
You should end up here
https://www.facebook.com/settings?tab=applications

Now have a look through your apps. Is there a lot there? Yeah I thought so. My advice, remove the lot.

Next go to Timeline and Tagging Settings
Now to stop a nosy medium from snooping on your page, if they are not connected as a friend, then you need to tighten up these settings, have a look through and make them as secure as possible.

Next go to Privacy, again if needed make these settings much more secure.
The most important one to secure is your friends list, and you want to make it so that only you can view it.

Now why would I suggest this?
Well let's say I am a dodgy medium, maybe your photos are all private, your timeline is pretty secure, there is really nothing I can see on your profile unless I am your friend, so how can I gather info on you, well the first thing I would do is go to your friends list. I am gonna start by searching for people with your surname, that is the easiest way to find siblings, children, parents and so on. And what happens when someone dies who had a Facebook account? It ends up being left as a tribute page. So if I am a psychic and find the page of your dead relative, I can end up finding out everything I need to know to pretend they are coming through in a reading.

Other things you can do if you have access to someones friends list. You can look at profile pictures, maybe your best friend has you on their profile photo, this is gold to a psychic, for it gives them another way to research you, and if that friend doesn't have a secure enough account the psychic can look through photos and see what places you go, what you do and so on. It all helps when building up the reading. For example, is there photos of you in fancy dress at Halloween? The medium could say.

"They are telling me how much you like dressing up, they are showing me blue paint, would you understand that?"

Guess what, you dressed up as a Smurf for Halloween, but the medium had no possible way of knowing that did they?

Another setting to tighten up is the one about who can search for you using an email address. Even if you don't follow a mediums page or are in their group, maybe you book tickets to a gig online and use your email, guess what, that email just exposed your facebook page. 

One time I pointed that out to someone, and they said "but I didn't use my real email address" upon some slight investigative work, they had a @hotmail.co.uk address for facebook, but used a @yahoo.com email for booking tickets, but the bit before the @ was the same on both. And on both it was their full name with a dot and numbers. So even if you don't give your name when you book, you are giving your name in your email address. Search for that name, their location, check their likes and it is pretty clear if you have the right person.

The only way you can be safe with an email address is if it is a brand new one, never used anywhere before, and does not contain your name within it. This really should be common sense, but sadly so many people make this mistake.

So now your facebook is nice and secure, what else is there. Well of course there is Instagram. Again if your account is public, and your username is your real name, or anything easily searched for, you have just given the medium another way to find out info on you. You Gran died, what do you do? You put a RIP message on your Instagram, a photo of you with her and so on. And who will comment? People who knew her, and suddenly the medium has a load more people to use to find information about this dead relative.

So just two pieces of advice here, make your profile private, that will stop people seeing your photos as well as your friends list, and change your username to something completely unconnected to you, your real name or anything that could be guessed. DO NOT PUT YOUR REAL NAME ON YOUR INSTAGRAM!

Twitter, again same advice as above, check your permissions, now consider what you use Twitter for, the vast majority of people will have a public account on Twitter, so your entire history is now view-able, and can be downloaded in it's entirety in a matter of seconds. Imagine the sheer amount of data a medium can pick up from there. They have everything you have ever posted in front of them in a simple document file. Thousands of tweets, well they are unlikely to read through them one by one, but they can always do a search for keywords like RIP, Dad, Mum, Gran and so on. And very quickly a picture can be built up of someone. 

If you are on Social Media, unless you are incredibly careful and private, it is almost impossible to stop someone researching you. And however much you convince yourself that you cant be found from just a phone number or an email, try and google your own details, google your name, then click the images tag, google your email address, see what comes up. This info is all available to a medium who knows you are going to his gig and wants to hot read you.

Let's get away from social media a bit. In the old days when a medium would arrange a gig in a town, they would send someone to a local shop, buy the local paper, and look up the obituaries. In 2018 you don't even need to do this.

A random medium, Derek Acorah, he has a show tonight in Brierley Hill in Dudley, England.
Google "Brierley Hill obituaries" and you get multiple links to local papers that have a list of obituaries in them.


Many of the sites will even have a search function.
So I know that Steve McBobberson has booked a ticket for my show, or perhaps has clicked on the "Going" link on my facebook page. But I can't be bothered to search through their social media page, instead I can search for their surname on the obituaries for that local area. Maybe I get lucky and the name matches up. These obituaries will not only have the name of the person who has died, but their age, their relatives names, what they did for a living and sometimes even how they died.

If I am a medium, I am not interested in the 91 year old who died peacefully in her sleep, because it is unlikely that any of her relatives will feel the need to visit a medium. No I am interested in people who died at any age under 65, as that would be considered too young to die.

And now these obituary sites even have comment sections for each person who has died whereby people can leave messages. This is gold for a medium. So they go through names of people they know will be attending their show, they scan obituaries for surnames that match, they match up names of the living to that on their list. And if all of this is matching up, and if the person died young. Perhaps the obituary says something like "They were taken from us too young", then the medium can assume this person was in an accident, or even killed, and now the medium as the name of the dead, their relatives name and so on, a quick google search for "Bob McBobberson Accident" and it was probably covered in the local paper, and now you have the name and how they died as well as the names of all their relatives.

And all this from Steve McBobberson clicking "going" on a facebook event page, or from steve.mcbobberson@"£$%.com email address.

We live in a world where nothing is private, we moan about excessive CCTV cameras filming us everywhere, yet we invited the world into our living room through social media.

And criminals are taking advantage of this. You are making life easier for mediums than it has ever been in history. Yet you then tell me some medium told you something they had no way of knowing!?

Before you think the medium had no way of knowing something, ask yourself, what is more likely? Is it real, or were you fooled.

There is no shame in being fooled, it has happened to all of us, even me, but there is shame that after you are fooled you keep being fooled by the same trick. And if you do not do anything to prevent being fooled, especially in this age of technology and living our lives online, then you have to seriously question yourself and ask why you invite this upon yourself.

If you post on a forum, the webmaster can see your email address, they can see your IP, on some forums they can even read your private messages. However much you convince yourself that no one can research you, I promise you, you are wrong. And if there is a possibility that someone can research you, even if you consider that chance to be small, it is still infinitely more likely than your dead granny telling a medium that she thinks your new kitchen looks lovely.

Be smart. Try it yourself, research yourself. And then try to tighten up that security, it will never be perfect, and if someone is knowledgeable enough then can still figure things out, but ask yourself, if you make it really hard for a medium to cheat, then they are less likely to try and cheat you.

But of course my final piece of advice is simply to save your money, don't go to that medium, don't take the chance you will be conned.

By Jon Donnis