“The Skeptic”

Today I have a recommendation, namely “The Skeptic”. As described by its Wikipedia page … “The Skeptic is a British magazine and is billed as “the UK’s longest running and foremost sceptical magazine, which examines science, skepticism, secularism, critical thinking and claims of the paranormal.“.

A Magazine?

If you are thinking, “Flat dead tree format stamped with lots of interesting articles”, then hit pause and think again, because these days it is very much digital, and so it is this … https://www.skeptic.org.uk … or to be a tad more precise, this …

It is an online portal that is fresh, vibrant, and has a flow of regular articles that will provoke thought.

They paid you to promote it?

Nope, nor did they even ask or suggest that I should. This posting is wholly and completely just me.

Since my blog here is focused on many of the same things, it is distinctly probable that “The Skeptic” is a portal of information that you my reader (all three of you) just might be interested in.

Truth matters. It is in essence a publication that turns a critical and analytical eye upon many of the extraordinary claims that we are awash with. If you have an interest in believing as many true things as possible and as few false things, then what you have here is a flow of reliable and insightful scribblings from folks who think the same way you do.

There are also a couple of other big ticket items I should highlight. It is not about income, they are a non-profit. Permit me to translate that for you. If you go to the website then you will not be faced with a barrage of ads. These days finding that is a pure delight.

When I first started blogging I did myself dabble with ads. That lasted a week or two. If for example I posted on some topic critical of , as an example, Astrology, then Ad-sense kicked in and started popping up ads promoting Astrologers. Once I realised that this was happening then that was the end of that.

Being a non-profit also means one other thing. They don’t pay their writers. It is wholly and completely a labour of love. Those passionate and on topic write because they have gained a fact-based insight into something and are sharing it with a wider audience, not to make a few bucks, but instead to make the world a slightly better place.

The big challenge for the editors will of course be the one that is faced by anybody with an online presence. There will be a consistent stream of daily emails from people asking if they can write articles that are supposedly “on-topic” but are in reality simply designed to promote some website.

How skilled are they at winnowing the grain from all that chaff?

In one word – “very”.

Oh come now, you know it to be the case, these are skeptics, of course they will turn a critical eye upon all pitches to the editor, and work out who is attempting to pull a con and advertise in stealth mode.

“The Skeptic” – a quick bit of history

Once upon a time it was indeed your traditional “flat dead tree” format magazine that would thump through your letter box four times a year. It has however now morphed into an online presence.

It is also under new management and was relaunched a couple of months ago. Today the editor is skeptical activist Michael Marshall, who is more commonly known as “Marsh”. An ideal choice because he has multiple years of experience as the Project Director of the Good Thinking Society. It is not just him, he is backed up by an editorial team from the Merseyside Skeptics Society.

You can find a full list of the editorial board here. If you have been involved within the UK skeptical community then you will spot the names of people that you will be wholly familiar with.

Just to give you a bit more confidence, here is a list of their Distinguished Supporters …

  • James Alcock – Professor of Psychology, York University, Toronto
  • Julian Baggini – Writer, broadcaster, philosopher, Editor of The Philosopher’s Magazine
  • Susan Blackmore – Writer, broadcaster, Visiting Professor of Psychology, University of Plymouth
  • Jason Braithwaite – Psychologist and neuroscientist, University of Birmingham
  • Derren Brown – Psychological illusionist, writer and artist
  • Scott Campbell – Associate Professor and Reader in Philosophy, University of Nottingham
  • David Clarke – Journalist, author, broadcaster, Senior Lecturer in Journalism, Sheffield Hallam University
  • David Colquhoun, FRS – Professor of Pharmacology, Honorary Fellow, University College London
  • Brian Cox – Professor of Particle Physics, University of Manchester
  • Sergio Della Sala – Professor of Human Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Edinburgh
  • Edzard Ernst – Chair in Complementary medicine, University of Exeter
  • Philip Escoffey – Writer, TV presenter and performer combining interests in the psychology of belief and mentalism
  • Richard J. Evans – Regius Professor of Modern History, University of Cambridge
  • Stephen Fry – Actor, writer, comedian, author, television presenter
  • Dr Evan Harris – former MP for Oxford West & Abingdon
  • Bruce Hood – Professor of Psychology, University of Bristol
  • Ray Hyman – Psychologist, Professor Emeritus, University of Oregon
  • Robin Ince – Comedian, actor, author
  • Scott Lilienfeld – Professor of Psychology, Emory University
  • Elizabeth Loftus – Professor of Psychology, Criminology, and Law, University of California, Irvine
  • Richard McNally – Professor of Psychology, Harvard University
  • Tim Minchin – Musician, actor, comedian, writer
  • P Z Myers – Associate Professor of Biology, University of Minnesota, Morris
  • Charles Paxton – Ecologist, University of St Andrews
  • Phil Plait – Astronomer, President of the James Randi Educational Foundation
  • Massimo Polidoro – Co-founder of CICAP, writer, journalist, broadcaster
  • Benjamin Radford – Writer, investigator, Managing Editor of Skeptical Inquirer
  • Ian Rowland – Writer, lecturer and psychological illusionist
  • Karl Sabbagh – Writer, TV producer
  • Simon Singh – Writer, broadcaster
  • Karen Stollznow – Linguist, writer, researcher and investigator
  • Richard Wiseman – Professor of the Public Understanding of Psychology, University of Hertfordshire, magician, writer

Can I tempt you?

OK, one more list. Here is a small list of some recent articles that have been published within the last week. It is not presented as a simple bullet list, but rather as tweets that came via their twitter account announcing these recent postings …

OK, one more tweet

You just might want to help them out a small bit.

It need not be anything vast, just the price of a coffee once a month for this labour of love is something that will help them to keep the lights on.

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