Questionable claims

Zak’s Demon House docu gets delayed (UPDATE: House destroyed)

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Nearly two years ago, Zak Bagans, flashy ghost investigator from TV Ghost Adventures, bought the “demon” house in Indiana days after it made sensational headlines in the tabloids and even in more reputable news outlets. The story of Ammons family who lived in the house was that of a woman and her three children who claimed they…

Nothing interesting happens in Canberra, eh? UFO hoax revealed (and it’s deemed ‘not interesting’)

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There was really no story to cover when, on January 4, 2015, several news outlets reported on a video on YouTube, promoted on Reddit, that was getting attention. You see, UFO/portal/wormhole videos are decidedly uninteresting (or should be) because they can pretty easily be faked and ARE regularly faked. All videos and photos (of ghosts, Bigfoot, lake…

Swords and sophistry: Questionable archaeology to the hilt (UPDATE: Not a Roman sword)

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Welcome to 2016! I predict that this year we will continue to see the popularity of pseudo archaeology – a cracked spinoff of a science-based field that studies human long-past history. Yes, more out-of-place artifacts, ancient alien astronauts, Atlantis, etc. Today, we bring you the continuing saga of SwordGate and a heretic historian who is attempting to prove…

Train in vain: No sign of Nazi gold train

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A discouraging update on the Nazi gold train said to be located in Poland. Back in August, even the culture minister was hopeful it was real. Alas, there were many reasons to be very skeptical as we noted back then. It turns out, no evidence that it is real has been forthcoming. A team of…

Inquest in UK teen suicide over wi-fi allergy claim

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Jenny, aged 15, committed suicide last summer. She had a history of health issues. Her mother attributed her problems to electromagnetic hypersensitivity. Mother claims wifi allergy killed her daughter and accuses school of failing to safeguard children – Telegraph Mrs Fry told Oxfordshire Coroners’ Court that Jenny had started showing signs of EHS in November…

Sweet Satan! It’s Exorcism EXTRAVAGANZA! (UPDATE: Snoozefest)

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UPDATE (editor) (2-Nov 2015): How did the broadcast go? Ratings are not in yet for cable but they WERE facing a World Series game and America’s Next Top Model. Both shows seemed to be more exciting according to reviews from Variety and the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Hopefully, they won’t try such blatant sensationalism nonsense…

Halloween with the “Jersey Devil”

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It’s that time of year! Silly stories of ghosts and monsters are everywhere. We are happy to bring you a Halloween treat by Dr. Brian Regal who shares with us an imaginative meet up with a devilish figure from history.  I stopped in at O’Bryan’s Pour House the other night for a drink and ran into…

China’s floating city is a likely CGI hoax (UPDATE)

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On October 13, I posted a link (in Chinese) to our Facebook page (which you might ‘like’) regarding a questionable image of a city in the clouds in Foshan, China. Even though this “mirage” was shown on Chinese television, it’s certainly not impossible that they are giving bad information to the public. Is this an optical illusion, or…

Orgasmic mushroom story is a bit of a cock-up

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All the “cool” and “hip” “science” and “viral news” aggregators are reporting on a magical mushroom that results in “earth shattering” orgasms that occur in half the women who smell it. What is this all about? It reeks of exaggeration if not outright falsity. But it’s based on a journal article so that lends it…

“Shark attack saved my life” story exaggerated

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There are so many unknowns and “ifs” in this story that it’s hard to know why it was news at all. Regardless, it is a case of coincidence in that he was prompted by a surprise incident to discover cancer very early. Good for him. But it’s not very accurate to bring sharks or outside…

Pennsylvania news outlets go overboard over “venomous” caterpillar

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Trending on Facebook today in Pennsylvania is the topic of the white hickory tussock moth (Lophocampa caryae). The headlines are that that this “venomous” or “poisonous” caterpillar from Canada has been spotted in PA. This is a clip from a “trending” page in Facebook: Oh my! Pretty scary stuff if you don’t know much about the…

Did teacher “alter the brains” of teens so that they ended up dead? No.

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A tragic case has been settled in Florida regarding the deaths of three high school students who were said to have been “hypnotised” by a former school official. The families of three students from North Port High School will receive $200,000 each from the Sarasota County School District under a settlement agreement. Because of this…

What’s worse? Evil spirits or a spider in your head?

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Today we present yet another plausible alternative to hauntings and possession. Spiders. The tabloids just love creepy stories about spiders. So, there were plenty of links to the story about the woman who heard scratching sounds and thought she was possessed by evil spirits only to find out there was something alive in her ear…

Exposed “healer” Popoff is back to take your money

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We are again pleased to bring you news of brilliant skeptical activism from UK’s Good Thinking Society as they expose former fraud televangelist Peter Popoff. He’s back to his old tricks “healing” people. But also, he has what appears to be a lucrative fund-raising plan that demands money from patrons in exchange for gimmicks and…

Facilitated communication sexual assault trial underway

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Here is an update to this case about sexual assault and facilitated communication, which has gone to trial. It’s an ugly, ugly thing: A Rutgers-Newark professor is on trial for sexual assault of a disabled man in a bizarre and disturbing criminal case out of New Jersey. Last week, a psychologist testified that the disabled…

Rumors are that it will be a disastrous week

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A Blood Moon prophetic disaster? The restart of the LHC makes big bang of doom? Mercury in retrograde? Heaven forfend! There are all these weird noises too! What does it all mean? The Apocalypse? Well if you buy into tabloids, and religious and conspiracy sites hype (specifically from the WND site), it sounds like the…

Man hoaxes kidnapping claim

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People lie about terrible things. That’s dumb. News smidgen: A Missouri man is accused in Illinois of falsely claiming he had been abducted after a night out with his co-workers. He sent texts and notices out that he was being held against his will. Filing a false report will get you in trouble. Source: Missouri…

FTC cracks down on vision “improvement” phone app

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It’s a shame that this company has such a great name and a snappy name for the product. However, it doesn’t work. You probably can’t improve your vision with an app and it’s not about “neuroplasticity” which is a sciencey word used here in order to impress consumers. FTC Charges Marketers of ‘Vision Improvement’ App With…

Big ol’ sea wolf caught in Pacific (UPDATE: Don’t be ignorant!)

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NEAT! (Originally published 16-Sept 2015) Remember, kids. Learn about nature so you can correct people who say this is some sort of “mutant monster” in your Facebook feed. An enourmous sea monster was caught by baffled Japanese fishermen off the island of Hokkaido. A ferocious looking fish with a gigantic head and sharp, protruding teeth has been found swimming in…