Tuesday, February 05, 2008


Im sure by now youve all heard about Luskins latest attack against the worlds irony meters:

The Research Blogging icon was designed to be used as part of that larger project. Anyone who wants to use the icon is welcome to. All you need to do is make sure that your post meets the guidelines for the project, register at the ResearchBlogging.org website, and follow the simple instructions that are provided. Casey did all but three of those things.
Yes, Casey used someone elses copyrighted image on a webpage. And worse, he did so to give his toddler-like babbling the veneer of 'scientific credibility.'

Everyone pretend to act shocked.

Pseudoscientists hijacking BPR3 was inevitable, really, so Caseys faux pas has triggered lots of interesting discussions about what to do. I think the 'fix' is simple: just require open comments. Pseudoscientists can yammer all they want about peer reviewed research as long as they follow the guidelines and people are able to say "Hey, youre full of crap, and heres why..." in the comments.

I really enjoy BPR3 posts myself, and I dont want their reputation sullied. But I bet you all have noticed that I havent taken part in BPR3. Personally, like Green Gabbo, I think BPR3 posts dont fit in with my writing style. I luv the idea, its just not for me right now.

BUT, Mister DNA has just invented a great icon for a lot of the posts I make, and I feel completely 'at home' using it:

I think we are going to be voting on the 'official' icon some time in the near future.


Mister DNA said...

Hi, Abbie -

I'm flattered that you like the graphic - I uploaded a better one (at higher res) and here's one without the coffee stain and "FAIL" instead of the "X".

Bob O'H was wondering if anyone is going to aggregate any BPSDB posts. If the concept catches on, it might be a good idea - ID has the big tent, we might as well have the carnival.

I saw your suggestion at BPR3 about having an open comments requirement for Peer-Review blogging. It would definitely prevent the DI's echo chamber from using the graphic in the future, but you just know Dembski would try to use it and say, "Hey, we allow comments - we just moderate the hell out of them."

Maria said...

Oh, that's beatiful. I think the math is distracting, though - it makes "Blogging on Pseudo-Scientific Douchebags" hard to read.

I think the BPR3 folks have the right idea with their green check mark against a simple background. It's clean-looking and works at a variety of sizes. The FAIL stamp might work for that.

Anonymous said...

how many times did casey luskin use the phrase "personal attacks" in the first three paragraphs his response to BPR3's thread (which, somehow, he has yet to post there) ?


poor casey

Mister DNA said...

Thanks for the constructive criticism, Maria. Here is a refined version with "FAIL" - it's still got the math in the background, but it should be easier on the eyes.

Note the URL on the image; for shits and grins, I registered bpsdb.org - who knows, it might come in handy...

MachiavelliDiscourse said...

The new icon looks great and is much easier to read. I think aggregation is a good idea - it will enable people to see the broad similarities between all of the pseudosciences: creationism, Holocaust denial, geocentrism, germ theory denial, HIV denial, flat earth hypothesis, etc.

Albatrossity said...

Wouldn't it be more grammatically correct to say "Blogging BY Pseudoscientific Douchebags"? it's sort of an insult to Orgel in its current format...

Of course, when Sal takes up this hobby, you will have to generate a new icon, featuring cottage cheese rather than the coffee-cup ring.

scott mc said...

Hi Ms. ERV =)

Just a quick off-topic note to say many thanks for all the information and entertainment your blog has provided during my lurking over the last few months. Much of the biology is incomprehensible to me (my scottish higher biology studies are many many years in the past, and to a very basic level), but because of people like yourself, NewScientist, Dawkins, Pharyngula et al, I find myself clicking links and reading and listening to a wide variety of scientific material. Weirdly enough, I've also rediscovered my love of physics as a result. Superpositions - dammit I always KNEW there was something weird going on... lol

I just wanted to wish you all the best of luck and continued success, both in your career and your blogging. As an old american friend of mine incessantly quoted, "Don't let the bastards get you down".


Scott Mc

P.S - kudos on your profile. Damn, a woman who likes science, Bruce Lee movies AND Floyd?!! You're assured of beer credits next time you're in Scotland! =D

P.P.S - The irony of the presence of astrology data in there wasn't lost on me. ;)

dr. snail said...

Looks like Luskin made a move right out of BillyD's playbook. "I didn't know!"


Jay said...

lol what kind of douchebag appropriates a tag like that? Where's the integrity?

Oh, right, we're talking about Casey Luskin.

Chris Noble said...

...he did so to give his toddler-like babbling the veneer of 'scientific credibility.'

You hit the nail on the head with that one.

I destroyed a few brain cells by listening to the interview with Mark Mathis of expelled infamy.

Creationists are so mean

He stated that ID proponents were acting scientific. It's probably not exactly what he meant but he got it exactly right. They are doing their best to act as if they're scientists. Some do some De Niro style method acting but in the end it is just acting.

Some like Casey never get past a superficial caricature of science.

Dr_V said...

Is it just me or did all the February posts only appear today?

Chris Noble said...

PS. If your irony meter is still functioning check this out.

DOLT: Okay, prof, what's confirmation bias?
MATHIS: Every scientist and journalist should be forced to take a class on confirmation bias. It means saying, I'm right, this is the way it is. Why are you questioning me? A lot of people in science and medicine are completely unaware of the fact that they need to protect themselves from it, or else they don't even try.

ME: Intellignet Design is confirmation bias.

Bill said...

Luskin pulled the icon and issued a lame notpology.

What's the tally so far?

Behe recanted.
Dembski (not)apologized.
Luskin icon pulled, publicly humiliated.
Simmons trashed by his own kind.

Seems like the Intelligent Design crowd lacks a little I-word.

Jay said...

Well hey, you have to give props when they eat their own crow. And props to the people who forced Luskin's hand.

Props all around!

alloy said...

Frankly Casey Luskin's is an embarressment to the American Legal system.

A lawyer who abuses his supposed position of authority to bully people into removing his photo from their blogs because of copyright (ignoring Fare usage) doesn't respect copy right himself

What about "ResearchBlogging.org" signature didn't he understand?

Ricky said...

I can't seem to find the requirement of registering anywhere besides in the passage quoted from Questionable Authority. In fact, the Research Blogging site says: "The best way to use the icons is to register at ResearchBlogging.org."

It seems that registration is not required.

JanieBelle said...

Oh I am so using that icon...

Mister DNA said...

A heads up for those of you who don't read AtBC: Blogging on PseudoScientific DoucheBags is now up and running.

There's even a "Blogging on PseudoScience" graphic for you nice guys.