October 10, 2012
My name is Uiwon, Hwang, 35 years old. I majored in railroad engineering at university and worked as a rolling stock driver after graduating. I always had some interest in the global scientific skepticism movement, a rare case in Korea. This is how I started to work in the field of scientific journalism.
An analysis of four classic flying-saucer incidents reveals how debunking can send a mundane case underground, where it is transformed by mythologizing processes, then reemerges—like a virulent strain of a virus—as a vast conspiracy tale. Defined by the Roswell Incident (1947), this syndrome is repeated at Flatwoods (1952), Kecksburg (1965), and Rendlesham Forest (1980).
October 1, 2012
Last fall, it was brought to my attention that John Edward was scheduled to appear in downtown Oklahoma City for two seminars on March 9, 2012. I brought this information to the campus group that I advise, the UCO Skeptics, and suggested we plan a protest to help educate people on exactly what John Edward would be doing, and that it was in no way related to supernatural abilities.
September 27, 2012
The Twin Fallacies of Appeal to Righteous Indignation and Appeal to Sanctity.
Appeals to righteous indignation or sanctity—which attempt to shield ideas from contemplation, discussion, investigation, or criticism—are common, impede rational discourse, and should be recognized as logical fallacies.
September 12, 2012
Skeptics are excellent at using their brains, but all that thinking can be exhausting. Luckily, at this year’s CSICon -- the conference dedicated to science and skeptical inquiry -- there’s going to be a way for the doubters to let their hair down, and win some truly excellent prizes.
The Trouble with Pseudoskepticism
A Feeble Challenge to Evolution from ‘Reasons to Believe’
Is Science the Antidote to Deepak Chopra’s Spirituality?
A review of War of the Worldviews: Science vs. Spirituality by Deepak Chopra and Leonard Mlodinow
SensaSlim Lawsuit Seeks to Silence Skeptics
May 31, 2012
At the occasion of the 6th World Skeptics Congress in Berlin, CSI, ECSO and GWUP adopted a resolution calling for high standards of scientific practice in scientific institutions and in science education.
My Ephemeral Friend
Steven Novella Honored with CSI’s Robert P. Balles Prize in Critical Thinking
The Lost Civilizations of North America documentary suggests that there is genetic evidence for a pre-Columbian migration of Israelites to the Americas. However, DNA studies provide no support for this hypothesis.
In May 2009 a meteorite impact was reported just thirty miles south of Fort Worth, Texas, but the mysterious object was of a very unusual composition for a meteorite. Had an impact occurred, it would have caused widespread devastation-yet nothing of the sort happened.
Ever since the FDA approved the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine in 2006, its introduction has been embroiled in a medical, social, cultural, and political controversy.
Measuring Mythology: Startling Concepts in NCCAM Grants
Laughing Goats and Scowling Sheep: Humor in Paranormal Discourse
Information Literacy and Conspiracy Theories
Musician and skeptic George Hrab recently sat down with Skeptical Briefs to discuss his latest album, Trebuchet, his Geologic Show at Dragon*Con, and why bald guys are just plain smarter than everyone else.
Digital Clock Numerology
The All-Dressed-Up-and-Going-Nowhere Ghosts
The documentary Lost Civilizations of North America presents a distorted picture of American prehistory. The archaeological evidence presented to support notions of ancient pre-Columbian contact consists of long-discredited frauds.
This collection of letters was previously posted as an Online Extra. Read it in CSI's Special Articles section »
Paranormal Misinterpretations of Vision Phenomena
9/11: Perspectives from a Decade Later
The Lost Civilizations of North America documentary is one in a long line of failed attempts to populate America’s ancient past with the denizens of lost tribes, lost cities, and, as its title indicates, lost civilizations.
An Ambitious, Hopeful Response to 9/11
When the Shrinks Ignore Science, Sue Them
The Flying Spaghetti Monster and the Pastafarian Quatrains
A Flawed Attempt to Reconcile Religion and Science
A review of The Language of Science and Faith: Straight Answers to Genuine Questions by Karl W. Giberson and Francis S. Collins