Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Skeptoid

I am still listening to the Skeptoid podcast.

I was not sure this would be the case a couple of months ago, when news of Dunning's sentencing hit skepdom.  Interestingly, there are a fair number of skeptical podcasts that I used to listen to like clockwork that I currently only take in from time to time.  As far as I know, all of their hosts and producers are not convicted felons.  Yet, Skeptoid, despite its founder Brian Dunning's serious legal problems, I still listen to on a weekly basis, and almost always within hours of its release.  

A big part of the reason is nothing more than convenience.  The episodes are still 10 to 15 minutes long, and one does not have to set aside a block of time to listen.  I usually listen on the drive home from work every Tuesday when the new episodes are released.  It'a s very opportune fit.  Part of the reason is the episodes so far--whether a fill-in host, or presumably something pre-recorded by Dunning--still pack the same quick blurb of information on some woo topic, pseudoscience, or conspiracy.  As always, Skeptoid is not the end all be all on a covered issue, but the show still produces a reasonable, useful and interesting 'World Book Encyclopedia' overview and jumping off point on a given subject.  

Dunning is still a felon, and after reading everything I could after his sentencing, serving some deserved time.  I do not condone his behavior or actions.  Yet, the show despite Dunning's legal issues is still a nice package.  There no other shows that I am aware of that does the same quick skeptical drive-by of information other than the 'podlet' portion at the start of Skepticality.  Each of the podlets is too sub-specialized to achieve the same thing as Dunning produces.  Dunning found a good niche, and he and his associates continue to fill that niche nicely.   

I enjoy my Tuesday hit of skeptical goodness even if the Godfather of the show has done some highly dubious things in his past professional life.  In the end, I appreciate that Skeptoid just works.  When the show breaks, I'll stop listening.  

2 comments:

  1. Have you already seen this? http://podbay.fm/show/549032701/e/1407783600?autostart=1
    My thoughts on this are that he has been sentenced and is serving the time the judge gave him. When he is done serving then that should be the end of it. I will be accepting him back to the community with no reservations. Dunning has done more in one month of Skeptoids than most have done in a lifetime in our community.

    Let the person who has committed no crimes throw the first stone.

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  2. I listened to SY shortly after its release. I can't find much fault in Dunning's skeptical work other than nitpicks. His podcast as I note above is quite good, but given the totality of everything I read or watched Dunning made a big error in judgment and the sentence he received appears within reason. As long as Dunning continues to do good work I will follow him.

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