Media

Another Slenderman-connected attack. Another girl. More parental reaction.

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Another attack is connected to Slenderman, this time in Ohio. This one sounds less connected, more complicated, and like an overreaction to a scapegoat cause. We can’t tell if it is a copycat case or the Mother seeing a post hoc connection. Hamilton Co. mom: Daughter’s knife attack influenced by Slender Man | Local News…

AL the Anomallama finds this shark story alarming. Here’s why he shouldn’t. (Hint: STUPID TV)

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What a bunch of baseless assumptions, speculation and fear mongering! Sploid has posted this story without ANY critical thought whatsoever because MONSTERS! And now it’s getting a ton of attention from people who are not thinking about it whatsoever, just passing it on. It’s making the rounds on mystery mongering sites where the commentators have…

Slenderman myth connected to attempted murder (UPDATE: Cult? Censorship?)

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This may be a first. Slenderman has gotten out of hand – attempted murder connected to the mythological monster. Two young girls are charged adults with first-degree attempted homicide of another girl. 12-Year-Old Wisconsin Girls Charged in Stabbing – ABC News. Prosecutors say two 12-year-old southeastern Wisconsin girls stabbed their 12-year-old friend nearly to death…

Cranktastic: Media gives attention to nonsense earthquake prediction

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Color me very irritated that mainstream media are giving this story ANY attention whatsoever. It’s not new, it’s not news, and it has zero basis in reality but may create a panic. Good going media for passing on unethical nonsense as sciencey-looking news, once again. ANY crank can say “earthquakes are predictable”. Words are cheap and…

Dyatlov Pass and Mass Murdering Yeti? A DN Exclusive

The tent found destroyed.

Doubtful News is pleased to present this EXCLUSIVE piece by author and researcher, Benjamin Radford, on the Discovery Channel’s presentation airing TONIGHT! [Warning: Spoilers] Dyatlov Pass and Mass Murdering Yeti? A Closer Look at Russian Yeti: The Killer Lives A new two-hour Discovery Channel “documentary,” Russian Yeti: The Killer Lives, revisits the curious case of…

Animal Planet and Discovery channels make MONSTROUS missteps for Monster Week

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Last week was Monster Week on Animal Planet. This weekend is Monster Weekend on Discovery Channel. (The two channels are affiliated under the Discovery Network). I came across a series of stories today that relate to these Discovery Channel/Animal Planet offerings. I decided to put them all together. From the past offerings of a dubious…

Gamma-ray Burst False Alarm: Self-Correcting Science and Public Scientific Enthusiasm

Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are powerful flashes of energetic gamma-rays lasting from less than a second to several minutes. They release a tremendous amount of energy in this short time making them the most powerful events in the Universe. They are thought to be mostly associated with the explosion of stars that collapse into black holes. In the explosion, two jets of very fast-moving material are ejected, as depicted in this artist’s illustration. If a jet happens to be aimed at Earth, we see a brief but powerful gamma-ray burst. (By ESO/A. Roquette at Wikimedia Commons CC BY 3.0)

It’s been a tumultuous week in astronomy-related false alarms. See also Citizen journalism asteroid hoax should be a lesson to CNN (Doubtful News). This week, social media buzzed rather excitedly about a “possible gamma ray burst detected in Andromeda.” But despite the excitement and speculation as to whether the detected emission was a gamma-ray burst (GRB)…

Cosmos series irritates those who hold anti-science ideas

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The new Cosmos reboot is generating some waves for sure. Creationists have a beef with the exclusion (even derision) of the God concept while teachers are excited to have interesting science content for their classes. Now, climate change deniers might get a little broiled over the latest episode to air. New Video: Neil deGrasse Tyson Destroys…

Chupacabra (mangey raccoon) killed in North Carolina

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Don’t tell the finder that it’s not the legendary monster chupacabra. Because he KNOWS it is. It exists, he says. Did elusive chupacabra attack farmer’s cows? Wildlife experts suspect sickly raccoon – Your Daily Journal – yourdailyjournal.com. After the disappearance of two goats, evidence of attacks on his cows and some mysterious late-night howls, James…

Never pass up some alien clickbait from NASA

One of Puu Loa Petroglyphs in the largest petroglyph field in Hawaii with more than 23,000 images carved into lava, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, USA.

Geez, NASA people, watch your language. People really believe this stuff! Nasa: Strange Markings Across The Globe ‘Might Have Been Made By Aliens’. Ancient rock carvings found across the globe were made by human civilisations, long ago, right? Well…perhaps not. No less an authority than Nasa have suggested they could have been made by aliens,…

Australian science journalism show messed up big time on show about statins

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In November 2013, we posted about a television program that aired in Australia that was full of information that confused those on medication for high cholesterol. In an update, the show was found to have been unacceptably biased after an internal review prompted by complaints. Catalyst statins show breached ABC code | The Australian. A…

Discovery wild speculation channel presents… Killed by Yeti

A Disneyfied Yeti

The Dyatlov Pass Incident: Was it Death by Yeti? Discovery Network continues their quest to be tops in science fiction. They are succeeding! A press release announces a 2-hour special investigating an actual unsolved mystery. And they know that when you can’t explain something, it just might be paranormal. This time, instead of UFOs or government…

Now I’m getting suspicious… Another case of COSMOS interruptus

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There was this story about a glitch in the Cosmos broadcast earlier this week. I figured, hey, mistakes happen. Never assume malice when incompetence is more likely. Well… do they happen with other programs? (Yes) The news media and forums are pointing out the Cosmos effect seems to be disproportionate and occurs in distinct cultural…

Herbalife tells distributors not to make miracle claims

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Personal testimonials are great advertising. This is why we have infomercials and companies that make billions selling nonsense and junk. Herbalife, a $4 billion weight loss and nutritional supplement company, has its share of critical eyeballs on it right now. When faced with national TV exposure about how the distributors were making outrageous “miracles” claims…

Cell block psychic continues tradition of grief vampirism

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TV continues to go lower and get sicker. At least this piece has some warranted criticism included. ‘Cell Block Psychic’ TV Show Is ‘Abhorrent’ To Those Who Work With Victims. A new TV series featuring a psychic who allegedly talks to spirits connected with convicted murderers and crime victims is coming under fire from those…

Evidence-based skepticism in the spotlight thanks to Bill Nye’s debate

Screen capture from the video where Bill Nye talks about evolution

It’s so very exciting to see the reverberation of the Creation-Evolution debate continuing. And I am very happy to see Skeptical Inquirer play a role in it. This current issue of SI has an exclusive piece written by Bill Nye, The Science Guy himself, discussing the behind-the-scenes goings on that took place before and during…

Star Trek captain narrates anti-scientific film (Update: Sounds fishy)

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Why? We don’t know. Geocentrism is just WEIRD. ‘Star Trek’ actress lends her gravitas to film promoting idea that sun revolves around Earth. A new documentary film, narrated by a former Star Trek actress, promotes the long-ago disproven idea that the sun revolves around the Earth. “Everything we think we know about our universe is…