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Tuesday, July 02, 2013

National Geographic's Pseudoscience

Here's an excellent piece from skeptic Mark Edward after he was contacted by a producer for National Geographic TV who wanted to do a piece on psychics. As Mark feared, the show was not going to reveal psychics to be frauds and con artists, but to present yet another pro-psychic piece of pablum that would include not much more than a nod to science and skepticism, probably in the form of a two-second audio cut in a one-hour show. He includes correspondence in which the producer is trying to get Mark to say things he does not want to say because they paint psychics in a much more positive light than they deserve. Despite Mark's protestation, the producer says, "We need to shoot the segment with the truth as we see it," which is not the same as the truth. In the end, NatGeo ended up not using Mark because he wouldn't play along with their false story line. Which is how we end up with so much bad TV promoting pseudo-scientific nonsense.