ParaNexus is an association of paranormal researchers and paranormal investigators who conduct paranormal research and paranormal investigations involving ghosts, spirits, alien abductions, UFOs, unknown creatures, unexplained phenomena, psychic phenomena, and other mysterious events. Visitors can report a UFO sighting, hauntings, and other paranormal events via our 24 Hour Helpline. ParaNexus also offers paranormal investigator certification, paranormal certification, training, paranormal classes, and paranormal courses.
Make Me Think
Experiments don't fail. When you try something new, you either learn that it is worthwhile for you or that it does not work for you, and thus save future time by not trying it again. - Stanley Goldstein

KM Photo/Video Classifications


By Doug Kelley, PhD, CH, CSL and Jari Mikkola, MCS, BA, CLPI • March 2008


Photographs and video anomalies are extremely difficult to prove as paranormal in nature. All measures should be taken into consideration such as:

  • The Exif info is intact for all digital photos.

  • Several before and after photos are available (or the entire negative strip if a film camera).

  • Ample before and after video footage is available of the area in which the anomaly occurred.


KM Photo/Video Classifications

Doug Kelley & Jari Mikkola



This classification means that all natural explanations have been strenuously ruled out and what remains indicates—but does not necessarily prove—a paranormal conclusion.

Examples that may be classified as Paranormally Significant include:

  • Apparition. The photograph/video irrefutably contains an apparition; full or partial, solid or transparent, human or animal.

  • Video Anomalies.

    • Movement of an object of its own volition.

    • A video anomaly that shows a decidedly intelligent flight path, i.e., one that moves, stops/hovers, then moves again and/or changes direction.

  • Other Anomaly. The photograph/video contains another type of anomaly that cannot be explained as a natural occurrence.


This classification means that a natural explanation is unlikely but cannot be ruled out completely. What remains could—but not necessarily is—paranormal in nature.

Examples that may be classified as Paranormally Compelling include:

  • Ectoplasm/Mist. An amorphous cloud that appears in a photograph as diffuse (widely spread, scattered, or dispersed), clear or blurred, light or dark, etc. A second photo taken within two minutes must show no mist.

  • Vortex. An anomaly that appears as a rapidly rotated movement of energy or matter with what appears to be a beginning and end point in the photograph. Often—but not always—what appears to be an orb moving very rapidly in the photograph with a very short shutter speed.

  • Other Anomalies. The photograph/video contains another type of anomaly that cannot be conclusively ruled out as a natural occurrence.


This classification means that the photo/video anomaly—while appearing to be paranormal in nature—can be explained as a natural occurrence or the weight of evidence points to a natural occurrence.

Examples that may be classified as False-Positives include:

  • Orbs. For all intents and purposes, orbs are not paranormal in nature and can easily be explained as dust, moisture, pollen, and airborne contaminants.

  • Light Streaks/Light Snakes/Energy Rods. This phenomena can almost always be explained as camera shake.

  • Lens Flare/Camera Anomalies. Lens flare happens when a light source is in front of the camera but out of the field of view.

© 2008 by Doug Kelley & Jari Mikkola. All Rights Reserved.

This article may be reprinted non-commercially provided notice is given HERE. Please include the name of this article, the website URL and/or a copy of the prospective newsletter.



15669 Views | Rating: (2 rates)