If you’ve been keeping track during the pandemic, you know that certain industries have been especially hard-hit by the events of the last year and change. Bars and restaurants have taken a substantial impact, and the performing arts like live music have as well. But there’s another industry that’s also experienced a downturn as a result of the pandemic, and it might not be one you’d expect. Hint: the paranormal is involved.

As Jelisa Castrodale at Vice explains, ghost hunters have had a rough time of it lately. Which might seem strange at first, but starts to make more sense when you realize that the industry involves a lot of in-person events and tourism — neither of which has really thrived since the pandemic began.

“[B]eing a full time ghost hunter, I make my career and my money doing ghost tours, lectures at colleges, and doing book tours,” said Ross Allison, who’s based in Washington State. “It really hit me hard, because my career is about getting involved with the public and depending on big groups of people, which hasn’t been happening.”

The article goes on to discuss the owners of haunted buildings, who generally have a solid array of guests in attendance — but who couldn’t depend on that income this past year, for obvious reasons.

According to medium and paranormal investigator Kristin Lee, owner of the Bellaire House, the pandemic has also has an adverse effect on ghosts. “Because we were closed, the Bellaire House spirits had no communication or an exchange of energy,” Lee told Vice.

As with those making a living from other industries, many people who make a living from the paranormal have learned to use Zoom as part of their work. Can one investigate a haunting with a webcam and a steady internet connection? The last year may have uncovered the answer to that question.

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