I am one of many people who have had anomalous experiences throughout their lives that cannot be explained in conventional terms. My experiences fit patterns that, in our culture, are often explained as “paranormal”, “UFO” or “alien abduction” experiences. I have an agnostic view of these cultural explanations; I am neither a “believer” nor a “skeptic”. However, I think that the underlying experiences giving rise to these explanations are both real and anomalous, whatever their actual origin.
David M. Jacobs Archive
My former therapist contacted “alien abduction” researcher, David M. Jacobs, Ph.D., of Temple University, recently retired, on my behalf in 2001. Jacobs subsequently suggested conducting hypnosis with me over the telephone. He led me to believe that I would be a research subject participating in scholarly research conducted under the auspices of Temple University, and he asked me to sign a research consent form citing the university.
Jacobs conducted ninety-one hypnotic regressions with me during thirty-seven hypnosis sessions, from December 2004 through February 2007. He conducted all the hypnosis sessions over the telephone, thousands of miles from my location. I was alone in my apartment, with no supervision.
While I was Jacobs’ research subject, his behavior became, in my considered personal opinion, increasingly bizarre and psychologically abusive. I have archived information about his conduct and research practices here, as I believe that it is a matter of public interest. I hope that this will help to prevent similar situations from happening to other research subjects in the future.
The Greys Have Been Framed
Jack Brewer’s book, The Greys Have Been Framed: Exploitation in the UFO Community, provides an in-depth account of Jacobs’ research practices and conduct towards me as a research subject, among other topics. It also touches on the research practices of Jacobs’ close friend and fellow “alien abduction” researcher, the late Budd Hopkins.
The Greys Have Been Framed: Exploitation in the UFO Community” explores the ways deception, sensationalism and questionable ethics characterize the UFO genre. With interviews and insights from James Carrion, Leah Haley, Dr. Tyler Kokjohn, Simone Mendez, Carol Rainey, Emma Woods and others, the manipulation of ufology as perpetrated by suspect individuals and the intelligence community is documented. The circumstances prove relevant whatever personal opinion one may hold on the mystery of UFOs and their alleged occupants.
The Abductionist’s Wife
Carol Rainey has released two excerpts from her upcoming book, The Abductionist’s Wife: A Memoir, on author Jack Brewer’s blog, The UFO Trail.
- The Singer’s Hybrid Daughter, Part I: Excerpt from The Abductionist’s Wife: A Memoir, by Carol Rainey
- The Singer’s Hybrid Daughter, Part II: Excerpt from The Abductionist’s Wife: A Memoir, by Carol Rainey
The Abductionist’s Wife provides a behind-the-scenes look at Hopkins’ research practices. He taught Jacobs how to perform hypnosis, although neither had professional qualifications in hypnosis or psychology. They were close collaborators in “alien abduction” research for decades, and each other’s best friends. When Hopkins died in 2011, Jacobs told colleagues, “I’ve just lost my mentor.”
I Am to Tell You This
Jeremy Vaeni’s book, I Am To Tell You This, And I Am To Tell You It Is Fiction, touches on Jacobs’ research practices and conduct towards me as a research subject, among other topics. It also mentions the response of sections of the UFO field when the issue became public, including Hopkins’ attempts to cover for Jacobs.
Together, after hours upon hours of hypnosis sessions performed over the phone … they grew the germ into a story that felt real but wasn’t. It was his gross fantasy, which he was acting out through a small group of people who had sought his help. … And so, through our influential podcast, Paratopia, Jeff Ritzmann and I shone a spotlight on Emma Woods and the tragic fact that, yes, we have to start from scratch with alien abduction research. [Vaeni, Jeremy. I Am To Tell You This And I Am To Tell You It Is Fiction (p. 150). Kindle Edition.]
Robert Sheaffer has published several books on the UFO phenomenon and Ufology, from a skeptical viewpoint. His book, Bad UFOs: Critical Thinking About UFO Claims, addresses both Jacobs’ and Hopkins’ research practices, among other topics.
If “Abductology” is the study of alleged UFO abductions, then it can be said that not since the sudden demise of Marxist-Leninism has any subject, real or imagined, self-destructed so suddenly and so completely as Abductology has managed to do in recent years. What has brought down Abductology so quickly? In a deadly one-two punch, a woman who was one of Jacobs’ subjects is publicly accusing him of unprofessional conduct, and has recordings to back herself up. This was followed by Hopkins’ ex-wife spilling the beans about his gullibility and even intellectual dishonesty. [Sheaffer, Robert. Bad UFOs: Critical Thinking About UFO Claims (Kindle Locations 3171-3175). Kindle Edition.]
Fortean Times’ two feature articles, 50 Shades of Grey: The Hidden History of Alien Sex Pests, and We Bring You Pain: Cruel and Unusual Sex and Violence Among the Hybrids and hypnotists, by Peter Brookesmith in Issue #296, provide accounts of Jacobs’ research practices, among other topics.
Secret Life also demonstrated Dr Jacobs’s interest in all things alienly sexual and specifically in cruel and unusual sex. … If Jacobs is inducing this kind of thing in people, then we’re witnessing something immoral, grotesque, and professionally unethical. What had been a widely-held suspicion became a public controversy in 2008 when Emma Woods (pseudonym) began posting details of her experience of Dr Jacobs’s investigatory techniques on her website … Hers seemed to be more than just allegations: everything Ms Woods has to say appears to be backed up by audio clips from the 37 long hypnosis sessions (involving 91 hypnotic regressions) with Jacobs that took place between December 2004 and February 2007. We can thus compare the general and specific charges against Jacobs and his methods with directly documented evidence.
UFO Magazine’s feature article, Aliens vs. Predator: The Incredible Visitations at Emma Woods, by Jeremy Vaeni, provides an in-depth account of Jacobs’ research practices and conduct towards me as a research subject. Vaeni and the publishers of UFO Magazine have kindly given me permission to provide a PDF archive of the article here.
[H]er trance testimony produced false memories of malevolent aliens abducting her, raping her, and threatening to kill her. Similar to Elizabeth’s reports. Similar to the testimony that fills Jacobs’s books. It seemed that where Emma’s real memories ended, a mixture of imagination and horror stories from Jacobs’s own mouth began. This was how the gaps called “missing time” were filled.
Paratopia Magazine’s’ feature article, The Priests of High Strangeness: Co-Creation of the Alien Abduction Phenomenon, by Carol Rainey, provides an account of Jacobs’ and Hopkins’ research practices. The same issue of the magazine contains Dr. Tyler A. Kokjohn’s article, Tainted, Toxic & Taboo: A Scientist’s Assessment of Alien Abduction Research, and my own article, Dangerous Games: Experiencers as Human Research Subjects. Rainey, Kokjohn, and the publishers of Paratopia Magazine have kindly given me permission to provide PDF archives of the articles here.
- The Priests of High Strangeness: Co-Creation of the Alien Abduction Phenomenon, by Carol Rainey (PDF)
But then along came Emma Woods’ story … It was an explosive case of subject abuse that shook up many people and would later become the November 2010 cover story for UFO Magazine. … I took the time to carefully review the material on both sides—on the subject (Emma Woods’) website and also on the website of researcher David Jacobs. The audio taped excerpts of the sessions provided a trail through the labyrinthine ways in which researchers are able to “lead” the subject in a certain direction by pre-hypnosis conversation about other cases they’re interested in; how the narrative is manipulated to fit the high strangeness requirements of the researcher’s upcoming book; the tapes also show egregious boundary crossing and ethical improprieties. It electrified me out of my silence and into action.
- Tainted, Toxic & Taboo: A Scientist’s Assessment of Alien Abduction Research, by Dr. Tyler A. Kokjohn (PDF)
Start with a mysterious phenomenon often buried deep within the subconscious mind and far outside ordinary experience. Investigate it using controversial and perhaps entirely unreliable methods. Present the findings in ways virtually guaranteed to undermine credibility and foster conflicts of interest. Put them all together and you have one scientist’s perspective of the alien abduction phenomenon—tainted, toxic and totally taboo.
Experiencers are in a vulnerable position as research subjects in ufology. The vast majority of us choose to remain anonymous publicly in order to protect ourselves and our families from the negative effects of the social stigma of the subject area. This, together with the widespread use of hypnosis by “abduction” researchers, the private nature of the research, and the control that researchers have over public scrutiny of their work, puts researchers in a position of power in relation to experiencers. In the event that a subject speaks out about abuse by an unscrupulous researcher, it is relatively easy for the researcher to defame them so that they are not listened to, as the iconic status of the researcher in the field means that their word is widely believed.
More to come …