Public Opinion on Aether-Tech and the Spiritual Plane
By 2043 the acceptance of a "separate but connected dimension" is widely accepted, but the idea of it being inhabited by the souls of the dead is still in debate. Some people feel that it is simply the extra spatial dimensions predicted by string theory and the ghostly phenomena is simply this new technology triggering some not yet discovered psychic or temporal effects. In this world, by 2043, some psionic effects have been observed in highly unique lab conditions (not easily repeated in nature).
As far as public opinion, most people don't really concern themselves with it yet. "Ghost hunting" is seen as a little more "respectable", the séance is seen as either the real deal or a harmless psychological trick, and the "shamanist" practices are viewed as more reliable than their Feng Shui predecessors since they appear to have a common set of rules about color and placement.
In general, a "man on the street" survey would have maybe 25% believing in ghosts and the spiritual plane, 50% believing that "something" is going on, and 25% thinking it is all some big scam or mistake.
Mediums and Empaths
Although the general public is more open to the belief in ghosts and psychic energy, the idea that individuals can somehow touch the spiritual realm without the aid of technology is still treated with skepticism. When the DOuD and Aether-Tech first appeared on the market, many celebrity mediums hosted television specials in the hopes of proving themselves against the technology (or perhaps discredit the tech somehow). The results were a damning condemnation of spirit mediums in general, with Aether-Tech providing more verified results by a wide margin.
While some ghost hunters swear on the existance of "Natural Mediums" who can see and hear ghosts or "Natural Empaths" who can "feel" the spiritual energies around them, most in the ghost hunter community treat those who claim such gifts as posers or possibly con-artists.