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predictive remote viewing

Predictive remote viewing (PRV) is clairvoyance into the future or directed precognition. PRV is the brainchild of some folks in the Australian Psychics Association (APA).

In 2003, a group calling itself PRV Associates (or PRV Asses for short) posted the results of a PRV experiment. On its website, the PRV Asses (or Asses for short) promise: "A second series is scheduled to begin soon." A look at how they designed and evaluated their first series of tests may reveal why we haven't seen the promised second series yet.

The Asses began with the assumption that "it should be possible to remote view the way a stock would perform on the stock exchange on a daily basis." They claim they have a great deal of evidence that this should be possible based on years of experience involving such super remote viewers as Ingo Swann, Skip Atwater, Joe McMoneagle, Paul H. Smith, Lyn Buchanan, and Mel Riley.

Anyway, the Asses "decided to look at short-term movements for the day every day between early May to the end of July 2003. We would RV for the day immediately following the remote viewing." This decision is not clarified so we must guess what it means. We do know that they selected three stocks "at random" from the top twenty stocks on the Australian Stock Exchange and that these three stocks would "be predicted upon for the following day." The exact nature of this being  "predicted upon" is not described.

They then created a database of 3,000 numbered photographs, from which six were randomly selected and two each were assigned to the three stocks. (They started the test with 120 photos, then on day eight they increased the number to 500. Later, they would increase it to 3,000.) One photo would indicate the stock would go up, the other would indicate the stock would go down. (No precautions were made in case the stock stayed where it was.) Without describing exactly what the PRV test will be, they declare: "If the RV was inconclusive it would count as a pass."

The Asses state: "We needed to make this a double blind experiment." Here's what that meant to them: neither the researchers nor the remote viewer would know what photos were being used before the remote viewing began. "That way there is no chance of guesswork, bias or cheating on anyone’s part." Wrong! The bias will come during the evaluation stage when the researchers have to decide whether the RV was a hit or a miss (pass?). Oh, but guess what? They're not going to judge hit or miss; they're going to rank the accuracy of the RV drawing on a scale of 0 to 4. First they will decide which of two photos most resembles the drawing. That's the one they're going to rank. Guess how many zeros the judges awarded? If you guessed zero, you're right! (Didn't they mention that the RV folks would be providing drawings of their remote viewings?) The judges may not have known what picture was selected before the remote viewing took place but they knew what they were testing and they were highly motivated to try to see some connection between the drawings and the photos. So much for eliminating bias!

Anyway:

The targets were locked in every Friday by midday for the following week. That means that fifteen stocks were selected and thirty photos were locked in as targets to be remote viewed for Monday thru Friday.

They would use just one remote viewer, the master of the tarot card, Simon Turnbull. He was

to provide raw data on specially designed worksheets by fax no later than midday on the day before the stocks were to be watched. The raw data could incorporate any RV protocol Simon chose to use; Controlled Remote Viewing (CRV), Extended Remote Viewing (ERV), Associative Remote Viewing (ARV), or anything in between.

Simon wanted to incorporate his own approach to making predictions, garnered over a thirty year career as a professional psychic. He added to this some of the techniques he had learnt from studying the foregoing RV methods, so we thought we would call the new protocol Predictive Remote Viewing (PRV).

The raw data referred to would be Turnbull's drawings, which looked like this and this and this. In all, it seems Turnbull provided 59 drawings. "Up to three judges" would "look at the two randomly chosen photos in order to judge which photo Simon’s RV most resembled ... and a rating would be given to the work." A 4 would indicate the highest rating and a 0 would indicate the lowest. However, the odds of any drawing getting a 0 would be about zero. The judges have already judged that the drawing resembles the one photo more than another, so they've already given it some value. The Asses considered any rating above 2 "to be good enough to be used as a potential basis for an investment the following day." Not with real money, of course!

The Asses believed that it would help Turnbull's predictive powers if he would

receive immediate feedback in the form of the photo selected, and the rejected photo. In this way he could fax back his own judgments of his work. This would have the effect of helping him to improve his remote viewing by virtue of seeing, while his memory was still clear, how close he actually came to seeing the photo target.

This is an interesting point, but I could not find any evidence that the Asses actually tried to evaluate Turnbull's performance over time. If they were right, the scores should have gotten higher as the test progressed.

The day after Turnbull would turn in one of his drawings, the opening and closing price of the stock was recorded. This data must be hidden in a secret vault because the Asses don't present a single stock price anywhere on their site. They then write:

Only then could we know which photo was correct, and be able to rate the prediction a failure or a success.

How they would know this isn't revealed.

Here are the judges' ratings for the 59 trials:

  • No ratings are given for the first 35 trials.

  • On trial 36, the Asses note: "The PRV was successful, but poorly rated (1)." His drawing was of three trees next to a road. The photo was from the sea looking at an island with trees and a ship to the right.

  • no 38No. 38 is rated a 2. He drew "a rippled screw" and here's the photo
     

  • No. 39 is rated a 2.5. He drew a boat and a square thing. The photo was of a wall of electronic equipment.

  • No. 40 is rated at 1.5.

  • No. 41 is rated 2.5. The drawing is of someone doing office work and the photo is of a bicycle racer. "The result was a winner." I take this to mean that some stock went up in value.

  • No. 42 is rated at 1.5.

  • No. 43 is rated at 1.5 and is called "one of the weakest results we achieved." (Didn't I predict there would be no zero ratings? Am I clairvoyant or what?)

  • No. 44 also gets a 1.5 but after a little reflection the judges were able to see that this was really a hit.

  • Ditto for number 45.

  • 46 isn't rated but 47 gets a 1.5.

  • 48 got a 2.5 and "proved to be a correct prediction," which I take to mean that the stock went up though this isn't stated.

  • 49 got a rating of 1.0 but was deemed a hit on review.

  • 50 was rated at 2.5 but no mention is made of whether the stock went up or down.

  • 51 was rated a 3.0 but no mention is made of stocks.

  • No ranking is given for 52.

  • 53 got a 2.0.

  • 54 got a 3.0 but no mention is made of stocks.

  • 55 was rated at 2.0.

  • For 56 they write: "A lowly-rated (.5) still had enough zoom to get us there." But is there a there there?

  • No rating for 57.

  • 58 gets a 1.0 but is called successful.

  • Of 59 they write: "This result was given a 3.5 rating, one of the highest of the series. We felt it had legs; we were right - it romped home." I take that to mean the stock went up.

It is interesting to see how the judges came to believe that Turnbull was right and that their low ratings were wrong. It was the judges' fault that the test didn't come out better! Even more interesting is that no mention is made of what stocks were involved or whether they went up or down as predicted. Also interesting is that over 60% of the trials are lacking any ratings.

Of course, this data is not further analyzed in a paper published in a peer reviewed journal. It sits there, posted on a website that doesn't seem to have been touched in four and a half years, so the world can continue to marvel at what the Asses have done.

Or, perhaps I'm the ass, and these folks have made such a killing on the stock market that they have abandoned the frivolity of the Internet and are now basking in the sun on their own island, daydreaming about how they are going to spend all the money they've accumulated by exercising the power of predictive remote viewing.

See also clairaudience, clairvoyance, cold reading, decline effect, displacement, ESP, experimenter effect, file-drawer effect, ganzfeld experiment, Uri Geller, medium, meta-analysis, Raymond Moody, Nostradamus, optional starting and stopping, parapsychology, past life regression, precognition, psi, psi assumption, psi-focus assumption, psi-missing, psychic, psychic detective, psychic surgery, psychokinesis, psychometry, James Randi Foundation psychic challenge, remote viewing, retrocognition, séance, sheep-goat effect, shyness effect, Charles Tart, telekinesis, and telepathy.

Last updated 24-Dec-2012

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