These are the guys that gave me the inspiration to investigate paranormal sites and divulge further into the unknown without feeling like I was the only person in the world who liked this stuff. They may or may not be intentionally deceiving us but I don't care. It's a TV show that has brought awareness to the paranormal field. Before the flood of ghost shows you couldn't talk about anything paranormal around the water cooler without people looking at you like you're crazy. This still happens but I think we are less inclined to keep the strange and unusual to ourselves, giving up living the double life.
I know this first hand because I have come out of my paranormal shell and told a few people what I do for a full-time hobby. Nobody had a clue before I broke the news. I also know that it can backfire on you. After following a lead on research I was doing for an investigation, I ended up at a fire station after business hours. The firemen welcomed me inside. I asked them about any house fires in the area and they talked freely about their occupation. They asked me why I wanted to know. I told them the truth, that I was investigating a haunting at a residence in town. Then I made sure I got in my question about whether or not they thought the firehouse was haunted, a rumor I heard while doing research, because I knew the end of my welcomed questions was near. They answered with a resounding no it's not haunted, looked at me like I had escaped from a mental institution, and showed me the door. It doesn't always work out but the stigma attached to ghost hunting is slowly dissipating.
I'm sick of everyone scrutinizing these shows for evidence it's all a scam. Would you enjoy watching if you knew it was all set up? Stop looking folks and take it for what it is, a TV show.
To be clear, I don't think Ghost Adventures is "set up". I do think they manipulate things so the audience perceives it as paranormal. Such as Zak will say, "Did you hear that noise?" Not, "Did you hear that noise. It's the spirit of Elvis." They let the viewers form their own opinion. I think they intentionally leave out information, again making things appear paranormal. They also overreact to different events going on but it wouldn't be an entertaining show if they didn't.
I want to believe. I don't care if it's real or fake. If these shows can provide awareness for our ghostly passion and give us the inspiration to invent better equipment for investigating then I'm all for it.
Zak, I forgive you.