Hawes began TAPS in 1990; originally it was called Rhode Island Paranormal Society. According to former TAPS member Donna LaCroix, the team initially began meeting "every Sunday in a coffee shop." After RIPS began investigating cases throughout the New England area, RIPS was renamed "The Atlantic Paranormal Society". Wilson joined the effort about two years later.
The group attempts to help individuals or groups who feel they have paranormal activity occurring to them by collecting evidence, which they also use for their own research purposes. They also share information through their website.
The group has recently released their first book, 'Ghost Hunting.' One other primary objective of TAPS is to make the rounds on the college lecture and convention circuit, as the event calendar on the group's main page shows various members are frequently booked at such events. It can also be seen from their schedule on their website that they have begun offering more and more 'Meet TAPS' type events in which, for a fee, you can go ghost hunting with them at famous sites.
The TAPS website features some of the evidence they have collected in video and audio form.
TAPS publishes a monthly publication called TAPS Paramagazine, which features articles written by group members and information pertaining to the paranormal. Hawes stated in an interview on the skeptical podcast 'Audiomartini' that the magazine is marketed primarily in an attempt to "fund the TAPS operation." The magazine itself states that "TAPS Para Magazine is a financial sponsor of The Atlantic Paranormal Society". The average issue is approximately 39 pages in length and was recently marketed by offering a 'behind the scenes DVD' of the show to new subscribers.
Beginning in July 2006 TAPS began releasing podcasts, TAPS Para-Radio, featuring Hawes and Wilson, on a sporadic basis.
In early 2007, TAPS ceased describing itself as a "non-profit organization" and instead adopted the term "free volunteer organization" due to potential liability issues stemming from the inaccuracy of the first description.
On December 1, 2007, TAPS released a video game in conjunction with Star Mountain Studios called 'Apparitions.' Available online for PC & Mac, TAPS co-founder Grant Wilson claims that this game is just the start of larger efforts in the interactive media space from TAPS in the future.
Beyond Reality Radio is a Radio Talk show featuring the Co-Founders TAPS and stars of the popular Sci-Fi hit show Ghost Hunters, Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson. Beyond Reality Radio started in April of 2007. Beyond Reality Radio airs Saturday nights at 7-10 PM on radio station WXLM. On the show Jason and Grant interview guests about the Paranormal and allow listeners to call in to contribute to the discussion. The crew of Beyond Reality Radio are hosts, Grant Wilson and Jason Hawes, Producer, Amy Bruni, and Studio Producer, Dave Gardiner. During the show or any other time you can visit TAPS official webpage and chat about the show or any other subjects. The room is watched over by Owners and Mods that keep the room G-rated and family friendly.
TAPS sends a group of 3 to 6 members to perform an 8-12 hour investigation employing a number of infrared and digital video cameras, thermal camera devices, EMF (electromagnetic field) Detectors, digital thermometers and other equipment throughout the site in question. While at a site, the members of the team often find common explanations for the claims of the occupants. In conclusion the team will report on its findings, and express their opinion that a site is "haunted" or "not haunted". They distinguish themselves from other Paranormal groups by going into a case by claiming they wish to disprove a haunting. TAPS does not charge their clients for the investigations or consulting.
TAPS current membership list is available on their website. An archive of their website is also available and can be used to track changes in membership since 2001. Other information was collected straight from the book titled Ghost Hunting True Stories of Unexplained Phenomena From The Atlantic Paranormal Society.
Many Paranormal Investigation Groups network and assist similar member-groups across the nation and around the world. TAPS invites paranormal research organizations into its own network, and may refer cases to them. Member-organizations put a "TAPS Family Member" banner (see below) on their websites which link to The Atlantic Paranormal Society's web page. A list of member organizations is available at the TAPS Family Website