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."
Where do conspiracy beliefs come from? Recent behavioral research suggests that they do not reflect pathology or lazy thinking but may instead come from normal, rational minds.
by Ryan Shaffer
Recently obtained FBI files shatter Sylvia Browne’s insinuation that she had a relationship with federal law enforcement and show that the only interest the agency had in Browne was investigating her for fraud.
by Joe Nickell
There are different versions—folklore at work—regarding the origins of both the giant fish and the old photo. Some say the picture is genuine, while others insist that it is not.
Once again, farmer Paul Trent’s famous UFO photos from McMinnville, Oregon, are a hot topic in UFOlogy.
So, how did The Amazing Randi escape not only from the cell that kept him a prisoner but also from the building of the police station in Valleyfield Quebec? Here is the ingenious solution devised by Randi.
by Harriet Hall
Supporters of alternative medicine and purveyors of quack remedies love to criticize conventional medicine and science. They keep repeating the same tired arguments that are easily rebutted. This handy guide will help skeptics answer common criticisms from doctor-bashers.
The popular online dating site eHarmony claims that its matching methods are both successful and scientific. But a closer look at the evidence suggests otherwise.
Research continues to find that violent video games play a negligible role in societal violence. But the politics of a culture war won’t let the idea go.
A medium made a seemingly impressive guess about a hummingbird on a national television talk show. A follow-up investigation finds it not so striking after all—for the birds, in fact.
by John Eades
Norman Mailer coined the word factoids to describe facts that have no existence before appearing in a magazine or newspaper, but once they do appear they are accepted without question. Some global warming deniers are especially fond of them.