The Paranormal News, Issue 001 (March 2004). ISSN 1742-7347, £1.

Reviewed by Djibril

This newly launched, slim, monthly newspaper touts itself as the 'search for the truth'. Although this issue contains articles, features, editorial, classifieds and calls to contact the 'newsdesk', none of the content could fairly be classed as 'news', either in the sense of being up-to-date, or of being in any way new, surprising, or newsworthy.

The so-called 'articles' are either biographical features, or aggrandising self-publicity for various mediums, psychics, and alternative therapists. These are not all totally without interest, although they lack much by way of new information for the paranormal enthusiast. In addition, with the notable exception of one article on 'Astroshmanism', pretty much every word in this 20-page issue (including the editorial) bears the hallmarks of a single, barely literate writer. The tone of articles fluctuates between wide-eyed wonder and bombast, with key phrases not only repeated (out of context) as headlines and captions, but irritatingly capitalised in their place in the text as well.

Questions asked or addressed are naïve: 'do we live forever?'; little white feathers, while not 'actually off the angels wings' (sic), are signs from angels nonetheless. Articles are uncritical, despite the editor's call to 'read with an open mind' (presumably meaning a gullible mind?), and many of the 'supernatural' phenomena described sound quite feasibly like natural, psychological, or coincidental events.

There seems not even to be a pretense at proofreading this paper, and as I have hinted there are in any case so many errors of orthography, usage, grammar, typography, punctuation, and malapropisms that would put Dubya to shame, that can not all be put down to editorial oversight. Sadly there is no sign of any real intellectual effort, imagination or seriousness behind this publication. (I never saw an issue 2; is this thing still running?)

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