Skeptical Inquirer is the official journal of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. It is published by the Center for Inquiry in association with the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. Six times per year Skeptical Inquirer publishes critical scientific evaluations of all manner of controversial and extraordinary claims, including but not limited to paranormal and fringe-science matters, and informed discussion of all relevant issues. In addition to news, articles, book reviews, and investigations on a wide variety of topics, Skeptical Inquirer has a stellar stable of regular columnists including Joe Nickell (“Investigative Files”), Massimo Polidoro (“Notes on a Strange World”), Massimo Pigluicci (“Thinking About Science”), Robert Sheaffer (“Psychic Vibrations”), and SI managing editor Benjamin Radford's reader-driven (“The Skeptical Inquiree”). Yale University neurologist Steven Novella, M.D., founder of the New England Skeptical Society and executive editor of the Science-Based Medicine blog, contributes a new "The Science of Medicine" column, and contributing editor Kenneth W. Krause adds a regular science column, "ScienceWatch."
As well-known monsters go, the chupacabra is of very recent vintage, first appearing in 1995. However, some writers have created pseudohistories and claimed a false antiquity for the Hispanic vampire beast. These examples provide a fascinating look at cryptozoological folklore in the making.
by Sadri Hassani
Deepak Chopra attempts to connect fundamental concepts of physics to consciousness and spirituality. He started (ab)using physics with his book Quantum Healing. But does he pass the first test of a true scientist: professional integrity?
by Elizabeth Loftus
These are remarks by psychologist and CSI Fellow Elizabeth Loftus accepting an honorary doctorate at Goldsmiths College, University of London.
by Joe Nickell
As with UFOs, some lights will remain unidentified—not because they are inherently mysterious but because they are just eyewitness reports or snapshots with so many variable factors.
by Matt Nisbet
These findings came with an important caveat: The relationship between TV viewing and belief was only significant among those viewers who reported prior personal experience with the paranormal.
Although the polygraph can be useful in coercing confessions, it is based on scientifically implausible assumptions of accuracy and is biased against the innocent. The scientific community justly considers it pseudoscience, and it should be abandoned.
by Stuart Vyse
Sadly, buying a gun does not make you safer. To the contrary, the evidence suggests that bringing a gun into your home increases the chances you will be killed.
This is the latest web craze known as the “Charlie Charlie Challenge,” perhaps dating back to an ancient Mexican tradition, an experience that intrigues kids and scares adults. Through a sort of séance, some claim people can ask questions to some unseen entity that should be able to reply.
by Joe Nickell
What has been called “one of the most extraordinary outbreaks of poltergeist phenomena” of the twentieth century began with an English schoolboy, aged eleven and a half years, Matthew Manning.
by Joe Nickell and James McGaha
By their nature, paranormal claims depend not on positive but negative evidence, by which proponents attempt to use mysteries (“the unexplained”) to support their beliefs. In contrast, scientists seek to use positive evidence to solve mysteries.