Skeptical movement

From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
(Redirected from Scientific skepticism)
Jump to: navigation, search

The skeptical movement (also spelled sceptical) is a recent atheistic social movement and subculture that devotes itself to attacking what it sees as irrationality and pseudoscience as described by mainstream scientific arguments. It officially describes itself as questioning whether claims are supported by empirical research and have reproducibility, as part of a methodological norm pursuing "the extension of certified knowledge".[1] For example, Robert K. Merton asserts that all ideas must be tested and are subject to rigorous, structured community scrutiny (see Mertonian norms).[2] The movement has had, and continues to have, an enormous and pernicious influence on the modern scientific community. Critics of the movement have often described it as being pseudoskeptical.[3]

About the movement's ideology and its scope

The skeptical movement officially describes its ideology as scientific skepticism or rational skepticism, and it also sometimes refers to it as skeptical inquiry. However, critics claim that the term scientific skepticism, when used by the movement, is in itself misleading.[4] The movement is closely associated with, and often overlaps with, the secular humanist movement.

Scientific skepticism is different from philosophical skepticism, which questions our ability to claim any knowledge about the nature of the world and how we perceive it. Methodological skepticism, a systematic process of being skeptical about (or doubting) the truth of one's beliefs, is similar but distinct. The New Skepticism, described by Paul Kurtz, a leading figure in the skeptical movement until his death in 2012, is the principal ideology espoused by the movement.[5]

Various definitions

The skeptical movement's ideology has been variously defined as:

"A skeptic is one who prefers beliefs and conclusions that are reliable and valid to ones that are comforting or convenient, and therefore rigorously and openly applies the methods of science and reason to all empirical claims, especially their own. A skeptic provisionally proportions acceptance of any claim to valid logic and a fair and thorough assessment of available evidence, and studies the pitfalls of human reason and the mechanisms of deception so as to avoid being deceived by others or themselves. Skepticism values method over any particular conclusion."

"Skepticism is a provisional approach to claims. It is the application of reason to any and all ideas — no sacred cows allowed. In other words, skepticism is a method, not a position."

"Skepticism is a method of examining claims about the world. The skeptical 'toolbox' includes a reliance upon reason, critical thinking, and a desire for verifiable, testable evidence about particular claims (especially extraordinary ones). Usually, the 'skeptical way of thinking' is embodied in the scientific method."


"...skeptics should be focused on, are focused on, have always been focused on, how to think not what to think."


The skeptical movement believes that empirical investigation of reality leads to the truth, and that the scientific method is best suited to this purpose.

The movement attempts to evaluate claims based on verifiability and falsifiability and discourage accepting claims on faith or anecdotal evidence. Self-described skeptics often focus their criticism on claims they consider to be implausible, dubious or clearly contradictory to mainstream science. The skeptical movement does not assert that unusual claims should be automatically rejected out of hand on a priori grounds - rather it argues that claims of paranormal or anomalous phenomena should be critically examined and that extraordinary claims would require extraordinary evidence in their favor before they could be accepted as having validity.

From a mainstream scientific point of view, theories are judged on many criteria, such as falsifiability, Occam's Razor, and explanatory power, as well as the degree to which their predictions match experimental results. Skepticism is part of the mainstream scientific method; for instance an experimental result is not regarded as established until it can be shown to be repeatable independently.[10] The skeptical movement traditionally is focused on 'what' people believe and not 'why' they believe, there might be psychological, cognitive or instinctive reasons for belief when there is little evidence.[11]

History of the skeptical movement

According to skeptic historian Daniel Loxton, "skepticism is a story without a beginning or an end", arguing that doubting and investigating extraordinary claims is as old as humanity itself.[12] Throughout history, there are examples of individuals practising critical inquiry and writing books or performing publicly against particular frauds and popular superstitions, including people like Lucian of Samosata (2nd century), Michel de Montaigne (16th century), Thomas Ady and Thomas Browne (17th century), Antoine Lavoisier and Benjamin Franklin (18th century), many different philosophers, scientists and magicians throughout the 19th and early 20th century up until and after Harry Houdini. However, the modern skeptical movement, which bands together in societies that research the paranormal and fringe science, is a recent phenomenon.[12]

Loxton mentions the Belgian Comité Para (1949) as the oldest "broad mandate" organisation associated with the skeptical movement.[12] Although it was preceded by the Dutch Vereniging tegen de Kwakzalverij (1881), which is therefore considered the oldest skeptical organisation by others,[13][14] the VtdK only focuses on fighting quackery, and thus has a 'narrow mandate'. The Comité Para was partly formed as a response to a predatory industry of bogus psychics who were exploiting the grieving relatives of people who had gone missing during the Second World War.[12] In contrast, Michael Shermer traces the origins of the modern skeptical movement to Martin Gardner's 1952 book Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science.[15] In 1968 the AFIS was founded in France.[16]

Influential North American skeptics: Ray Hyman, Paul Kurtz, James Randi and Kendrick Frazier.

Although most skeptics in the English-speaking world see the 1976 formation of CSICOP in the United States as the "birth of modern skepticism",[17] founder Paul Kurtz actually modelled it after the Comité Para, including its name.[12] Kurtz' motive was being 'dismayed (...) by the rising tide of belief in the paranormal and the lack of adequate scientific examinations of these claims.'[18] Despite not being the oldest, CSICOP was 'the first successful, broad-mandate North American skeptical organization of the contemporary period',[19] popularised the usage of the terms 'skeptic', 'skeptical' and 'skepticism' by its magazine, Skeptical Inquirer,[20] and directly inspired the foundation of many other skeptical organisations throughout the world, especially in Europe.[21] These included Australian Skeptics (1980), Vetenskap och Folkbildning (Sweden, 1982), New Zealand Skeptics (1986), GWUP (Austria, Germany and Switzerland, 1987), Skepsis r.y. (Finland, 1987), Stichting Skepsis (Netherlands, 1987), CICAP (Italy, 1989) and SKEPP (Dutch-speaking Belgium, 1990). Astronomers often stood at the cradle of skeptical organisations,[22] but also magicians like James Randi, who formed his own James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) in 1996, were important in exposing charlatans, popularising their trickery. He invited anyone to demonstrate their claims were real with the One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge. Other influential second-generation American organisations were The Skeptics Society (founded in 1992 by Michael Shermer), the New England Skeptical Society (originating in 1996) and the Independent Investigations Group (formed in 2000 by James Underdown).

After the Revolutions of 1989, Eastern Europe saw a surge in quackery and paranormal beliefs that were no longer restrained by the generally secular Communist regimes or obstructed import from Western Europe by the Iron Curtain (such as homeopathy), prompting the foundation of many new organisations associated with the skeptical movement to protect consumers.[23] These included the Czech Skeptics' Club Sisyfos (1995),[24] the Hungarian Skeptic Society (2006), the Polish Sceptics Club (2010)[25] and the Russian-speaking Skeptic Society (2013).[26] The European Skeptics Congress (ESC) has been held throughout Europe since 1989, from 1994 onwards co-ordinated by the European Council of Skeptical Organisations.[27] In the United States, The Amaz!ng Meeting (TAM) hosted by the JREF in Las Vegas has been the most important skeptical conference since 2003, with two spin-off conferences in London, UK (2009 and 2010) and one in Sydney, Australia (2010). Since 2010, the Merseyside Skeptics Society and Greater Manchester Skeptics jointly organise Question, Explore, Discover (QED) in Manchester, UK. Six World Skeptics Congresses have been held so far, namely in Buffalo, New York (1996), Heidelberg, Germany (1998), Sydney, Australia (2000), Burbank, California (2002), Abano Terme, Italy (2004) and Berlin, Germany (2012).[27][28]


Some of the topics that the skeptical movement questions and attacks include health claims surrounding certain foods, procedures, and alternative medicines; the plausibility and existence of supernatural abilities (e.g. tarot reading) or entities (e.g. poltergeists, angels, gods - including Zeus); the monsters of cryptozoology (e.g. the Loch Ness monster); as well as creationism/intelligent design, dowsing, conspiracy theories, and other claims the movement sees as unlikely to be true on scientific grounds.[29][30]

Members of the movement, such as the late James Randi, have become famous for their purported debunking of claims related to some of these. Paranormal investigator Joe Nickell cautions, however, that "debunkers" must be careful to engage paranormal claims seriously and without bias. He explains that open minded investigation is more likely to teach and change minds than debunking.[31][32]


Richard Cameron Wilson, in an article in New Statesman, wrote that "the bogus sceptic is, in reality, a disguised dogmatist, made all the more dangerous for his success in appropriating the mantle of the unbiased and open-minded inquirer". Some advocates of intellectual positions strongly discouraged by the skeptical movement (such as HIV/AIDS denialism, Holocaust revisionism/denialism and Global warming skepticism/denialism) are seen as engaging in pseudoskeptical behavior when they characterize themselves as skeptics. This is despite what the skeptical movement sees as their cherry picking of evidence that conforms to a pre-existing belief.[33] According to Wilson, who highlights the phenomenon in his book Don't Get Fooled Again (2008), the characteristic feature of false skepticism is that it "centres not on an impartial search for the truth, but on the defence of a preconceived ideological position".[34]

The skeptical movement is itself often criticized on this ground, from both supporters and opponents alike. The term pseudoskepticism has found occasional use in controversial fields where opposition from the skeptical movement is strong. For example, in 1994, Susan Blackmore, a parapsychologist who became more skeptical and eventually became a CSICOP fellow in 1991, described what she termed the "worst kind of pseudoskepticism":

"There are some members of the skeptics' groups who clearly believe they know the right answer prior to inquiry. They appear not to be interested in weighing alternatives, investigating strange claims, or trying out psychic experiences or altered states for themselves (heaven forbid!), but only in promoting their own particular belief structure and cohesion ..."[35]

Commenting on the labels "dogmatic" and "pathological" that the "Association for Skeptical Investigation"[36] puts on critics of paranormal investigations, Robert Todd Carroll of the Skeptic's Dictionary[37] argues that that association "is a group of pseudo-skeptical paranormal investigators and supporters who do not appreciate criticism of paranormal studies by truly genuine skeptics and critical thinkers. The only skepticism this group promotes is skepticism of critics and [their] criticisms of paranormal studies."[38]

Perceived dangers of pseudoscience

Skepticism is an approach to strange or unusual claims where doubt is preferred to belief, given a lack of conclusive evidence. The skeptical movement generally considers beliefs in the extraterrestrial hypothesis (ETH) and psychic powers as misguided, since no empirical evidence exists supporting such phenomena. The Ancient Greek philosopher Plato believed that to release others from ignorance despite their initial resistance is a great and noble thing.[39] Modern skeptical writers address this question in a variety of ways.

Bertrand Russell argued that individual actions are based upon the beliefs of the person acting, and if the beliefs are unsupported by evidence, then such beliefs can lead to destructive actions.[40] James Randi also often wrote on the issue of fraud by psychics and faith healers.[41] Opponents of alternative medicine often point to bad advice given by unqualified practitioners, leading to serious injury or death. Richard Dawkins points to religion as a source of violence (notably in The God Delusion), and considers creationism a threat to biology.[42][43] Some skeptics, such as the members of The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe podcast, oppose certain new religious movements because of their cult-like behaviours.[44]

Notable skeptical projects

Guerrilla Skepticism on Wikipedia

File:Five Fellows CSI 2018.jpg
Susan Gerbic of GSoW and four other CSI fellows in 2018: (left to right: Kendrick Frazier, Ben Radford, Mark Boslough, and Dave Thomas)

The skeptical movement is known for conducting large-scale and openly admitted organized team editing of Wikipedia articles.[45] A high percentage of administrators, as well as various other registered users on the site, are self-described members or supporters of the movement.[46]

In 2010, as a form of skeptical outreach to the general population, Susan Gerbic launched the Guerrilla Skepticism on Wikipedia (GSoW) project to improve skeptical content on Wikipedia.[47] In 2017, Gerbic (who was made a fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry in 2018)[48] and her GSoW team received an award from the James Randi Educational Foundation which "is given to the person or organization that best represents the spirit of the foundation by encouraging critical questions and seeking unbiased, fact-based answers. We are pleased to recognize Susan's efforts to enlist and train a team of editors who continually improve Wikipedia as a public resource for rationality and scientific thought."[49]

In July 2018, Wired reported that the GSoW team had grown to more than 120 volunteer editors from around the world, and they were collectively responsible for creating or improving some of Wikipedia's most heavily trafficked articles on skeptical topics. As of July 2018, GSoW had created or completely rewritten more than 630 Wikipedia articles in many languages, which together have accumulated over 28 million page visits.[50]


The movement is also the basis of its own skeptical wiki, RationalWiki, which was founded in response to Conservapedia.[51] It was created in 2007 after an incident in which contributors attempting to edit Conservapedia were banned, and is owned by Trent Morgan Toulouse, a psychology professor at Central New Mexico Community College. Since then, it has developed into a wiki that strongly criticizes "crank" ideas, pseudoscience, conspiracy theories, and fundamentalism. Ideologically, RationalWiki typically argues in favor of atheism, feminism, racial egalitarianism, LGBT rights, and separation of church and state, and criticises conservatism and libertarianism.[52] RationalWiki differs from Wikipedia in the sense that it frequently uses sarcasm and humor in its articles.

RationalWiki, much like Wikipedia, has been criticized for bias, factual inaccuracies, and has been the subject of libel lawsuits.[53] Its owner, Trent Toulouse, is on record as saying he enjoys being sued over defamations made by editors on RationalWiki.

Criticisms of the skeptical movement

Despite its enormous and often pernicious influence over the scientific community, the skeptical movement has been heavily criticized by its political opponents, who usually describe themselves as dissidents. Members of the movement are often progressives, liberals or left-leaning libertarians, who, in turn, are widely seen as promoting a political agenda by their opponents. While the skeptical movement has attacked common targets, such as paranormal claims, it has been severely criticized for doing little to prevent discredited pseudoscientific theories such as psychoanalysis and critical theory from influencing mainstream science and society more generally.

The skeptical movement rarely criticizes some recent theoretical physics theories, such as string theory, despite frequent criticisms by others of being pseudosciences and these theories having many of the problems which skeptics criticize in other cases.[54] This is related to a tendency to automatically attack fringe views and to thus support mainstream views.

Many "skeptical" attacks do not consist of valid scientific arguments, but instead of ad hominem attacks and guilt-by-association labels. The "flat Earth" label is often applied by self-described "skeptics" towards their political opponents.[55][56] Despite framing itself as investigating pseudoscience with scientific methods, the skeptical movement does little or no scientific research itself. Its media publications, when they contain scientific arguments, do so in the form of easily read "popular science" aimed at the general public. Such "popular science" usually does not properly present complex scientific arguments, but rather relies on a covert or overt appeal to authority.

The skeptical movement vehemently defends the current orthodoxy on various issues. One problematic aspect is by treating all criticisms of orthodoxy as similar and thus implying guilt by association between unlikely paranormal claims and more plausible conspiracy theory claims. Notably, anything labelled as a conspiracy theory by mainstream sources will likely be automatically attacked and ridiculed by skeptics. This is despite the existence of real conspiracies and the label often being applied falsely. Another problematic aspect is the frequent genetics denialism.

Aside from other kinds of smear attacks, the skeptical movement frequently attacks dissidents as having confirmation bias and other psychological biases and psychological problems. This is supposed to explain why non-skeptics do not realize that the point of view of the skeptics is the correct one. Non-skeptics usually argue that a gigantic confirmation bias and other issues provide partial explanations for why many skeptics deny the existence of politically incorrect genetic group differences (such as between the races and/or genders).

Virtue signalling is often seen as a motivation for many members and may be one explanation for the political correctness of the movement. Influential skeptics, who often make money from their skepticism, must be politically correct in order to maximize monetary income. Another possible explanation is the political correctness of the geek subculture. Another possibility is the moralistic/naturalistic fallacy. Many skeptics may also be mislead by the mainstream media and other sources regarding issues such as the degree of support for the existence of genetic group differences in the scientific literature and by the scientists actually doing genetic research on such issues.

Notable media affiliated with the skeptical movement

See also


  1. Stemwedel, Janet D. (2008-01-29), "Basic concepts: the norms of science" (blog), ScienceBlogs: Adventures in Ethics and Science, Seed Media Group<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>: quoting Merton, R. K. (1942)
  2. Merton, R. K. (1942). The Normative Structure of Science.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles> in Merton, Robert King (1973). "The Sociology of Science: Theoretical and Empirical Investigations". Chicago: University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978-0-226-52091-9. Missing or empty |title= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Kurtz, Paul (1992). The New Skepticism: Inquiry and Reliable Knowledge. Prometheus. p. 371. ISBN 0-87975-766-3.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Skepticblog".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Skeptic » About Us » A Brief Introduction". The Skeptics Society (<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Drinking Skeptically - What is skeptcism?".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Skeptics Guide to the Universe, episode 379".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. Wudka, Jose (1998). "What is the scientific method?". Retrieved 2007-05-27.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. Bakker, Gary. "Why Do People Believe in Gods?". CSICOP. Center for Inquiry. Retrieved 4 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 Daniel Loxton (2013). "Why Is There a Skeptical Movement?" (PDF). The Skeptics Society website. p. 3. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. Andy Lewis (3 August 2009). "Dutch Sceptics Have 'Bogus' Libel Decision Overturned On Human Rights Grounds". The Quackometer. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Masseuse met kapsones" (in Nederlands). De Standaard. 21 June 2007. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. Michael Shermer (1997). "A Skeptical Manifesto". The Skeptics Society website. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. Jean-Pierre Thomas. "Notre histoire". Website AFIS (in français). AFIS. Retrieved 3 April 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. Loxton (2013), p.29.
  18. Loxton (2013), p.32.
  19. Loxton (2013), p.2.
  20. Boel, Herman (2003). "Wat is het verschil tussen Skepticisme en Scepticisme?". Wonder en is gheen wonder (in Nederlands). SKEPP. 3 (1). Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  21. Frazier, Kendrick (1996). The Encyclopedia of the Paranormal. Amherst, New York. pp. 168–180. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  22. Tim Trachet (5 June 2010). "Twintig jaar SKEPP in 2010" (in Nederlands). SKEPP. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  23. Mahner, Martin (January–February 2002). "10th European Skeptics Congress: Rise and Development of Paranormal Beliefs in Eastern Europe". Skeptical Inquirer. CSICOP. 26 (1). Retrieved 23 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  24. "Czech Skeptical Club SISYFOS". Sisyfos website. 27 May 2006. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  25. Tomasz Witkowski & Maciej Zatonski (18 November 2011). "The Inception of the Polish Sceptics Club". CSI website. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  26. Richard Saunders. "Episode 338". The Skeptic Zone. Retrieved 1 July 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  27. 27.0 27.1 "Earlier European skeptic events". HSS website. Retrieved 24 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  28. James Alcock (25 May 2012). "World Skeptics Congress 2012: A Brief History of the Skeptical Movement". YouTube. Retrieved 3 June 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  29. Gardner, Martin (1957). Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science. Dover. ISBN 0-486-20394-8.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  30. "Skeptics Dictionary Alphabetical Index Abracadabra to Zombies". 2007. Retrieved 2007-05-27.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  31. Nickell, Joe, Skeptical inquiry vs debunking<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  32. Hansen, George P. (1992). "CSICOP and the Skeptics: An Overview". Retrieved 2010-05-25.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  33. Wilson, Richard (2008-09-18), "Against the Evidence", New Statesman, Progressive Media International, ISSN 1364-7431<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  34. Wilson, Richard C. (2008). Don't get fooled again: the sceptic's guide to life. Icon. ISBN 978-1-84831-014-8.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  35. Kennedy, J. E. (2003). "The capricious, actively evasive, unsustainable nature of psi: A summary and hypotheses". The Journal of Parapsychology. 67: 53–74.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles> See Note 1 p. 64 quoting Blackmore, S. J. (1994). "Women skeptics". In Coly, L.; White, R. (eds.). Women and Parapsychology. New York: Parapsychology Foundation. pp. 234–236).<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  36. "Skeptical Investigations". Association for Skeptical Investigation. Archived from the original on April 12, 2013. Retrieved July 6, 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  37. "Internet Bunk".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  38. Robert Todd Carroll "Internet Bunk: Skeptical Investigations." Skeptic's Dictionary
  39. Allegory of the cave, Plato The Republic, (New CUP translation by Tom Griffith and G.R.F. Ferrari into English) ISBN 0-521-48443-X
  40. Russell, Bertrand (1928). "On the Value of Scepticism". The Will To Doubt. Positive Atheism. Retrieved 2007-05-27.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  41. Fighting Against Flimflam, TIME, Jun. 24, 2001
  42. Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion, Black Swan, 2007 (ISBN 978-0-552-77429-1).
  43. Better living without God? - Religion is a dangerously irrational mirage, says Dawkins, San Francisco Chronicle, October 15, 2006
  44. Langone, Michael D. (June 1995). Recovery from Cults: Help for Victims of Psychological and Spiritual Abuse. W. Norton. American Family Foundation. p. 432. ISBN 0-393-31321-2.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  45. Guerrilla Skepticism on Wikipedia
  46. Wikipedia:WikiProject Skepticism
  47. Gerbic, Susan (March 8, 2015). "Wikapediatrician Susan Gerbic discusses her Guerrilla Skepticism on Wikipedia project". Skeptical Inquirer. Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. Archived from the original on August 30, 2015. Retrieved January 13, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  48. "Center for Inquiry News: Cause & Effect: The CFI Newsletter - No. 99". Archived from the original on 8 February 2018. Retrieved 2018-02-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  49. "2017 JREF Award". James Randi Educational Foundation. Archived from the original on March 28, 2018. Retrieved March 27, 2018.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  50. Matsakis, Louise (July 25, 2018). "The 'Guerrilla' Wikipedia Editors Who Combat Conspiracy Theories". Wired. Retrieved July 25, 2018.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  52. Multiple authors. "Freedom of religion", "Atheism", "Feminism", "LGBT rights", "Conservatism", "Libertarianism", RationalWiki.
  54. Why String Theory Is Still Not Even Wrong

Further reading

  • Randi, James (June 1982). Flim-Flam! Psychics, ESP, Unicorns, and Other Delusions. Prometheus Books. p. 342. ISBN 0-345-40946-9.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Randi, James; Arthur C. Clarke (1997). An Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes of the Occult and Supernatural. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 336. ISBN 0-312-15119-5.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Sagan, Carl; Ann Druyan (1997). The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark. Ballantine Books. p. 349. ISBN 0-345-40946-9.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Gardner, Martin (1957). Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science. Dover Publications. p. 373. ISBN 0-486-20394-8.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Shermer, Michael (1997). Why People Believe Weird Things. St Martins Griffin and Company. p. 349. ISBN 978-0-8050-7089-7.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links