Questionable claims

15 Credibility Street #25: A spray a day keeps monsters away

In this jam-packed episode, we run through updates on still active news stories, discuss some current cool and not so cool things from the last two weeks, and check out a hyped anomaly that probably wasn’t as described. Closing out the episode is a great conversation about what transpired at Cryptid Con 2017 – a…

15 Credibility Street #24: Feeling out of this world

This shorter episode is heavy on the theme of “people really believe this stuff” and why that’s not something to scoff at. I (Sharon) am off to attend a cryptozoology event this weekend that might prove to be a bit weird. I also express some thoughts about the years worth of content on Doubtful News…

15 Credibility Street #23: The sound and the fury

This episode, Sharon and Torkel discuss several recent news events and how they reflect on social views of science and credible sources. First, an eclipse recap: Nothing bad happened and we were not overwhelmed by alien or occult forces. The Hopkinsville aliens did not reappear. New Age spiritualism at a Mt. Shasta festival The media…

15 Credibility Street #22: We’re not saying they made this stuff up but…

There are a whole lot of shenanigans to call out on this episode. We have a special commentary by Jeb Card about the spooky stuff in association with Hopkinsville, Kentucky and the upcoming eclipse. Listen to get a primer for what might be popular in the media from now until then. Torkel and I discuss…

15 Credibility Street #21: Exaggerated and Unlikely Evidence

Follow up: Grand Canyon Creationist Update – NPS relents New Skeptoid episode on the case Fyre Fest Organizer arrested and Blink-182’s Matt Skiba Claims His ‘Witchy Ways’ Doomed Fyre Festival Tom DeLonge’s Sekret Machines News items: Amelia Earhart dubious photo History Channel documentary Extreme Tech regarding the Japanese theory. Debunked Slate: The “lost” Earhart photo was…

15 Credibility Street #20: A Mummy-Bundle of BS

Mummies, aliens, and alien mummies. It’s a strange strange world out there… News chat: 70th anniversary of Flying Saucers “Anonymous” needs to be ignored. Their goofy (and boring) claims are baseless and should not be considered “news”. Real people have to waste valuable time debunking this s**t. Gwnyeth’s GOOPy stickers Gizmodo was the first to point out…

Nazca “alien mummy” revealed in promotional video featuring serial hoaxer (UPDATE: Experts say ‘hoax’)

UPDATE: As I said originally, with a number of very ignorant people insulting me for it, the mummy has been deemed to be a hoax by experts who say that it is clear real mummies are being manipulated to look strange and exotic by adding extra bones. See the addition below the original story.  You…

15 Credibility Street #19: Leaping to doubtful conclusions

News items: A news blast from the paleo world made top science headlines this week saying the great and powerful T. Rex is unfeathered. Read the study that caused the news headlines and controversy. Washington Post piece Fantastic feathers Some paleobiologists said “told ya”! Others not so much. Check out this video by Trey the…

Continuing miseducation on Bigfoot

Community and small local colleges typically provide non-credit continuing education courses for the locals at low cost. As I’ve written about previously, it’s often art or history classes, computer training, those sorts of things. But also frequently offered are “classes” on paranormal nonsense like “How to develop your psychic powers,” “Ghost Hunting 101,” and “Tarot Reading”.…

United we fall: Dr. Dao and unsubstantiated “facts”

Here’s the thing. The Internet is a gigantic flood of information with outlets and individuals vying for your attention to click on their sites over others. Those “interesting” stories, true or not, get shared, propagating some real wing-ding falsehoods. Wednesday (yesterday), when social media outrage over the United Airlines “re-accommodation” situation was going full bore,…

Monkey girl mystery is unraveling

The “girl found living with monkeys” in India story got huge press attention last week. The child was around 11 years old, emaciated, unclothed and was said to be in the company of monkeys who tried to chase away rescuers. Regular DN reader, Joy, sent me the story and was skeptical of it right off…

Tabloid pseudoscience alert: Alien claw

The usual tabloid suspects are hyping a non-story about the finding of an “alien claw” in Peru. ALIEN investigators claim this giant hand is REAL and could have come from a dead extra terrestrial being. Source: Researcher Brien Foerster claims ‘giant hand from Peru cave’ could be of alien origin | Daily Express and Institute…

15 Credibility Street #7 – Big old problem: they might be giants

In this episode, I talk with Jason Colavito about giants, angels and monsters. Or, giant monster angels, who may be anti-diluvians or Atlantians, and who watch, though I’m not sure what and why the hell they are watching. They may be Bigfoot ancestors, or space aliens, or demons, or sons of God, or just “men…

Shark-repelling device rather dramatically fails real-world test (Update)

See update below for response from the Sharkbanz company. A product called “Sharkbanz” is getting some terrible publicity today as a Florida teenager wearing the magnet bracelet was bitten by a shark prompting questions about how useful this product actually is. Wearing shark repelling band, Teen gets attacked by shark Zack Davis was a lifelong…

Facebook to flag and fact-check fake news

Facebook is tackling fake news by rolling out a flagging plan that triggers fact-checking by hand-picked fact-checkers. Admittedly going after “the worst of the worst”, they enlist the help of Snopes, ABC News and PolitiFact who have all signed on to the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN). This sounds like great start. The stories get flagged…

Mothman “reappears” coincidentally close to the 50th anniversary date

A man driving along State Route 2 in West Virginia near Point Pleasant, legendary home of the bad omen, Mothman, says he captured pictures of the creature. The local news covered the story. Man photographs creature that resembles legendary ”Mothman” of Point Pleasant | WCHS He said he stopped when he saw something jumping from tree…