The Skeptics Society

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The Skeptics Society
Skeptic Magazine.png
Formation 1992
Location
  • Worldwide
Membership 55,000[1]
Executive Director Michael Shermer
Website www.skeptic.com

The Skeptics Society is a nonprofit, member-supported organization devoted to promoting scientific skepticism and resisting the spread of pseudoscience, superstition, and irrational beliefs. The Skeptics Society was founded by Michael Shermer as a Los Angeles-area skeptical group to replace the defunct Southern California Skeptics. After the success of its magazine, Skeptic, introduced in Spring 1992, it became a national and then international organization.

History[edit]

The Skeptics Society was formed in 1992, and, as of 2008, it has 55,000 members worldwide including Bill Nye "The Science Guy", Saturday Night Live alumna Julia Sweeney, biologist Richard Dawkins, and popular astronomer Neil deGrasse Tyson.[1]

Activities[edit]

The Skeptics Society is involved in a number of activities. One of its primary activities is the publication of Skeptic magazine. Skeptic is a quarterly magazine available by subscription or on major newsstands in the U.S. and Canada. The magazine examines many fringe science and paranormal claims. Its cover stories have ranged from examination of alleged UFOs in religious icons[2] and theories of the likelihood of artificial intelligence,[3] to tributes to luminaries such as Isaac Asimov [4] and Ernst Mayr.[5] Some editions feature special sections devoted to a particular topic or theme that is examined through multiple articles by different authors, such as intelligent design and alternative medicine. In each issue of Skeptic is a pull-out issue of Junior Skeptic, a skeptical magazine aimed at children. The Skeptics Society also publishes eSkeptic, a weekly email newsletter on skeptical topics.

The Skeptics Society hosts a website containing information on skepticism-related topics and provides information to the media about such topics.

The Skeptics Society distributes two free podcasts. In 2007, Skepticality was adopted as the group's official podcast. In addition to Skepticality, the Skeptics Society also has the podcast MonsterTalk.

The Skeptics Society sponsors a lecture series at the California Institute of Technology. The Caltech Lecture Series offers speakers on a wide range of topics relating to science, psychology, social issues, religion/atheism, skepticism, etc. Past speakers include Julia Sweeney, Richard Dawkins, Philip Zimbardo, Dinesh D'Souza, Steven Pinker, Carol Tavris, and Sam Harris. The lectures occur on Sunday afternoons, and are open to the public for a nominal fee.[6] The Skeptics Society also sell recordings of the lectures.[7]

In addition, the Skeptics Society hosted the "Origins Conference" in October 2008 with Nancey Murphy, Hugh Ross, Leonard Susskind, Sean Carroll, Paul Davies, Stuart Kauffman, Christof Koch, Kenneth R. Miller, Donald Prothero, and Victor J. Stenger.[8][9]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Making a living of bullshit detecting". Vue Weekly. August 27, 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  2. ^ "Medieval UFOs?". Skeptic (skeptic.com) 11 (1). 2004. 
  3. ^ Skeptic Vol. 12 No. 2 - Artificial Intelligence. skeptic.com
  4. ^ Skeptic Vol. 1 No.1 - (Premiere Issue) Tribute to Isaac Asimov, skeptic.com
  5. ^ Skeptic Vol. 11 No. 4 Ernst Mayr. skeptic.com
  6. ^ "Caltech Lecture". The Skeptics Society. 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-17. [dead link]
  7. ^ "Order Caltech Lectures". The Skeptics Society. 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-17. , skeptic.com
  8. ^ "Origins Conference October 3–4, 2008". Skeptics Society. 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  9. ^ "The truth is out there - and science can prove it". The Age. August 21, 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-10. , theage.com.au

External links[edit]