Paranormal conventions are cool, fans can meet and greet with their favorite paranormal stars, talk with like minded people about is becoming or has become their “fandom”. Everyone enjoys hearing the lectures and and the little gadgets you can get from the vendors.
A conference isn’t really any of those things. While they can have lectures and meet and greets, the focus is more towards education and peer review than celebrities meeting the fans. It is more of a meeting of the minds. And that is what we need as paranormal investigators be it ghost hunting, cryptozoology, or what have you.
There needs to be a face to face with large groups of investigators who can work with the science community to set some basic, testable, “rules” so to speak. Also there needs to be some actual testing of some of the “tools” that are being used in the field. Like cutting out all variables and getting to the basics. More to the point, there needs to be just a basic theoretical foundation that can be built up with multiple tests.
We are in currently in a time and place that there are millions of people working on investigations of some sort. That is way more than any other disciple in the world or at any time. If we can generate a framework that all investigators follow, use, and grow with the help of the fuller community, then we can make the leap from being labeled pseudoscience to actual scientific research. If your scientific methodology only takes up less than a page, it needs to be retooled.
I propose that in 2020, in Indianapolis, Indiana, we come together as a community and start the process. We can even work on smaller levels, and do regional meet ups with individuals traveling between regions with the notes and paperwork from the other regions. Until we can get the conversation going towards these goals, I feel we will always be on the outside.