Skeptics study proves psychics fail … again and again and again.
The results of the Great Australian Psychic Prediction Project, a 12-year study by Australian Skeptics, have revealed that so-called psychics’ predictions are correct only 11% of the time.
And when something momentous or calamitous happens, they are unlikely to have foreseen it.
In fact, most of what happened was not predicted, and most of what was predicted did not occur. (The Queen did not abdicate in 2003, 2004, 2012 and again in 2020; anti-gravity did not become a reality, Prince Harry did not become King, and COVID-19 did not just ‘go away’ by December 2020.)
Under the supervision of Australian Skeptics’ chief investigator Richard Saunders, the survey covered over 3800 predictions made between 2000 to 2020 by more than 200 Australian psychics. It took 12 years of diligent work by skeptics, trawling through magazines, newspapers, TV and radio, websites, YouTube, and social media, to compile as comprehensive a list of predictions as possible.
It is easily the most detailed project of its kind ever attempted in Australia, and most likely the world.
And the results:
– 11% of predictions are “correct”.
– 15% expected (as in, stating “the bleeding obvious”)
– 19% too vague
– 2% unknown
– 53% wrong
Tim Mendham, executive officer of Australian Skeptics, said “If my car mechanic was right only 11% of the time, I’d get a different car mechanic. But if, overall, all mechanics were right only 11% of the time, I’d think there was something seriously wrong with the entire industry.
“The results indicate nothing better than educated guessing – or even uneducated guessing – and certainly no better than any non-psychic could do, and probably a lot worse.”
– The profession’s journal, the International Psychics Directory, had only 8.5% correct.
– Psychics missed such ‘minor’ events as Malaysian Airlines’ losing two planes (2014, one shot down, one disappeared), a spectacular meteor over Russia (2013), the Pope resigns (2013 – first time in 600 years), Space Shuttle Columbia disaster (2003), Summer Olympics cancelled (2020), Concorde crashes (2000), Hurricane Katrina (2005), and the deaths of Steve Irwin, Shirley Strachan, Peter Brock, Kerry Packer, Whitney Houston, Robin Williams, Prince, David Bowie, Osama bin Laden, and Michael Jackson.
And, except for a few vague or shoehorned claims, they all missed something called COVID-19.
Daniel Ryan of the NZ Skeptics said “These results don’t come as a surprise to us. We confidently predict that New Zealand psychics will have a similar rate of failure to those elsewhere in the world. We’ve seen our local psychics fail time and time again. Six seasons of Sensing Murder have shown us that psychics are useless in solving crime – there’s not a single murder they have helped to solve. It’s nice to have some detailed statistics showing how psychics operate – badly.”
A full report on the survey is published in the latest issue of Australian Skeptics’ magazine, The Skeptic, and can be found online on the Australian Skeptics website.