idoubtit

Editor and owner of Doubtful News. Writer, specializing in science and society, science policy and education.

Odd things in the sky – over southeast and the space station – are not UFOs

OH YOU alien

Space junk creates a spectacle over Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and Tennessee. And a video being shamelessly promoted by tabloids sparks paranoia about NASA hiding evidence of UFOs. It’s just the normal stuff that goes on here at DN. A slow-moving mystery object lit up parts of the Georgia sky early this morning. NASA has…

Remains of the weekend 27-28 June 2015

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The Federal Trade Commission has stopped a group of marketers in California from using allegedly bogus “risk free trial” offers to sell skincare products online. At the Commission’s request, a federal district court has issued a temporary restraining order against the defendants halting their deceptive marketing practices, freezing their assets, and appointing a receiver over…

International Astrology Foundation smacked for deceptive practices in Iowa

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An Iowa judge has ordered a New York-based company that prosecutors say conned people into paying for outlandish psychic readings and prophecies to stop soliciting Iowa residents and refund nearly $14,000 already sent from them. Source: Court orders New York psychic outfit to reimburse Iowa residents for ‘outrageous’ deception Polk County District Court Judge Douglas…

Wi-fi marketing claim in China aimed at people who fear radiation

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An obvious case of devious advertising can misinform consumers in a big way. Two Chinese tech firms have clashed over a new wireless router with a special setting for pregnant women. Source: ‘Pregnancy wi-fi’ router causes controversy in China Qihoo 360 unveiled the device, an upgrade to an existing product, which has three settings it…

Not the ‘Holy Grail’ recovered

Part of the Nanteos cup.

Recall the story from last August when the police raided a pub thinking a stolen “relic” that was possibly the infamous Jesus cup? They found a wooden salad bowl. This time they recovered the “real” thing. The relic is understood to have been stolen from a woman who had borrowed it in the hope it would…

The Strange remains the same for 24 June 2015

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A fluorescent lamb that had been genetically modified with jellyfish protein to give it transparent skin ended up mistakenly being eaten in France, even though it was only meant to be used in research, reports said on Tuesday. Source: ‘Jellyfish-lamb’ ends up on French plates by error   Kentucky Sens. Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell…

Anti-vax doctor dead of apparent suicide; conspiracists fired up

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Dr. James Jeffrey Bradstreet, who goes by Jeff Bradstreet, an autism researcher who ran a clinic that endorsed pseudoscientific cures on autism patients and others, has died by apparent suicide on June 19. For several days over the weekend there was no word on cause of death. But some anti-vax autism sites were mourning his loss. Age of Autism…

Planet-dolia pyramids and poles

Cropped from the original picture from the Mars Rover raw image feed from JPL

A number of stories are circulating online today with claims of weird things found on other planets. As usual, the facts are interesting but mystery-mongering sites overreach and portray them as extraordinary, that is, there are cities or evidence of civilization out there. The evidence for THAT is doubtful indeed. We see what we want…

The Strange remains the same for 23 June 2015

Yoda, the 4-eared cat.

‘Electrosensitive’ people are flocking to the West Virginian home of a deep-space telescope, attracted by the rules prohibiting phones, TVs and radios. But, as Ed Cumming reveals, their arrival means Green Bank is far from peaceful. Source: The town that banned Wi-Fi    Study after study show vitamins don’t lower cancer or heart-disease risk. In…

NOT a fish fall in India, but a flood

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This story from Andhra Pradesh province in India circulated saying fish FELL from the sky. But the circumstances and location made it reasonable to assume they just came in with the overland rain water. Villagers amazed by ‘fish rain’ in Vijayawada Villagers of Gollamudi in Nandigama mandal on Friday woke up to a surprising ‘fish rain’ that…

The neighbor from hell

witch red smoke

One would think that living in Glastonbury, this kind of neighbor would be common. Glastonbury woman in court after claiming neighbour was a witch who cursed her A GLASTONBURY woman who waged a campaign of harassment against her neighbour claiming she was a witch and had put a curse on her has been ordered not…

Remains of the weekend 20-21 June 2015

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Keepers at San Diego Zoo had used acupuncture and hydrotherapy to treat his arthritis and other ailments. Treat? Nope. Source: Galapagos tortoise, aged 150, put down in California   While the mayor stressed the alleged assault was an “isolated incident”, she did recount numerous verbal attacks from people who were anti-fluoride over the last two…

The Strange remains the same 19 June 2015

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Spirits might haunt the old York County prison, but the curious public must continue to wonder.York City’s Redevelopment Authority rejected a request Wednesday from the Northeastern Paranormal Association to conduct a two-day investigation at the Chestnut Street site. Source: York City denies paranormal prison request   Want to read a really gullible piece of reporting…

Shoddy evidence for “haunted” Liverpool property

Ghost

A HAUNTED house has gone up for rent with the incredible disclaimer that its former occupants experienced “paranormal activity”. Haunted house: Rightmove list property where ‘paranormal activity’ happened The terraced three-bedroom home in Toxteth, Liverpool, is allegedly haunted by a 135-year-old spectre called the Pickwick Poltergeist. The poltergeist supposedly once lifted a former tenant out…

The Strange remains the same for 17 June 2015

Credit: Banfield group

A house-shaking explosion noise has baffled Auckland residents.The mammoth bang was heard by residents in the suburbs of Onehunga and Mangere Bridge about 10.30pm on Sunday. Source: Mystery noise baffles Auckland residents   We used to laugh at conspiracy theorists, but from Fifa to banking scandals and the Iraq War, it seems they might have…

Etsy will be turned into a newt

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In the fall of 2012, Ebay took a stand against the sale of paranormal products. Though some people still tried to sell ghosts and “haunted” objects. Now, Etsy, the online marketplace for handcrafted goods has offended their community of supernatural vendors by shutting down accounts that sell spells and hexes. Witches are furious at Etsy for banning…