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TheESP podcast on Wikipedia

Thanks to Adam Kumiszcza, TheESP now has it’s own Wikipedia page! The European Skeptics Podcast (TheESP) is a weekly podcast hosted by three skeptics representig several European skeptic organisations in Europe: András G Pintér from Hungary, Jelena Levin from Latvia and Pontus Böckman from Sweden. The main goal of the podcast is to support European level actions within the skeptical movement.

TheESP podcast

Is alternative medicine widespread but not widely used?

When it comes to debates and reasoning, alternative medicine proponents used to refer to popularity and customer choice issues (instead of efficacy). However there are several thorough surveys that seems to show that the use of alternative medicine is not at all so widespread. Does everyone speak about it but only a few using it?

Alternative medicine use in the UK

NatCen – Britain’s largest independent social research agency – launched a blog series where they plan to go through the European Social Survey data to know more.

Get tickets to the ESC ’17

Dear skeptics!

As I am sure you all know by now, the next ESC ’17 will take place in Poland in September of next year.

The Polish Skeptics Club and the Czech Skeptics Club Sisyfos have a holiday surprise for you. Starting tomorrow, December 12th at 12:12 CET, you can start purchasing TICKETS to the ESC! Also, the first 50 Good Tickets are 20% off – 80 Eur instead of the regular price of 100 Eur.

What this all means is that not only do you save on your ticket, but you can get a wonderful present for your loved ones who are skeptics and for your loved ones who aren’t (yet).

Happy holidays!

Be skeptical of quote memes! A guide

Internet memes have radically changed the way we communicate online, especially on social media. It usually consists of a photo or cartoon with some text making a point. As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, and may therefore be much more effective at communicating a message than an entire well-reasoned, evidence-based essay (especially when Twitter limits posts to 140 characters).

How to refute creationists’ misconception of the term ‘theory’ with one picture.

Memes can be very witty in explaining something odd about the world in the form of a simple joke, and make people rethink their view of society. But, although they may often contain a kernel of truth, they’re usually inaccurate in detail, and sometimes extremely misleading or just plain wrong. Continue reading “Be skeptical of quote memes! A guide”

Author: Leon Korteweg
Date: 1st November 2016

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Today the ECSO is 22 years old

These are the ECSO’s founding documents: the Establishment Agreement and Charter, as adopted on 25 September 1994.
They were drafted during the sixth European Skeptics Congress that was held in Oostende, Belgium. At earlier conferences and in letter correspondence in the run-up to this weekend, extensive negotiations had taken place between eight organisations from different (Western) European countries with the same goal: to protect the public against harmful misinformation, to investigate extraordinary claims and to promote evidence-based science policies. As it happened, the French skeptics’ representative had to return home due to grave family conditions, so seven organisations (including the U.S.-based CSICOP) became the founding members (with the later approval of the national and regional organisations’ boards). Here is a photo of the people who signed on behalf of each (you may recognise some of them):

The seven signers of the founding documents (left to right): Amardeo Sarma (GWUP, Germany/Austria/Switzerland) Michael Howgate (UK Skeptics, Britain), Miguel Angel Sabadell (ARP, Spain), Paul Kurtz (CSICOP, USA), Tim Trachet (SKEPP, Belgium), Arlette Fougnies (Comité PARA, Belgium), Kees de Jager (Stichting Skepsis, Netherlands).

22 years later, the thus established European Council of Skeptical Organisations has grown and expanded to include many more groups across the continent, especially the east and north. Ten more Congresses and several symposia and campaigns have been held in support of transnational skeptical activism. The ECSO is currently looking to cooperate with associations in countries where organised skepticism is still relatively new and could use the support and know-how of the old family. Internationalisation requires skeptics to work together, because pseudoscience and extraordinary claims have also profited from fading boundaries and new technologies.

Date: 25th September 2016

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Original news: link