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Still Waters

Is this the Loch Ness Monster?

116 posts in this topic

You mean beside no bodies, alive or dead? Or even a physical sample of one? Youre right, none I guess.

Absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence.

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Absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence.

Thats a very clever turn of phrase. Nicely done.

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Absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence.

nor does it mean whatever you can dream up can be true

Thats a very clever turn of phrase. Nicely done.

Its not his. Its from Carl Sagan. But he used it as the fool's argument for believing in things that have no proof. The phrase is commonly taken out of context from "the Demon Haunted World" which changes it radically.

Appeal to ignorance — the claim that whatever has not been proved false must be true, and vice versa (e.g. There is no compelling evidence that UFOs are not visiting the Earth; therefore UFOs exist — and there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. Or: There may be seventy kazillion other worlds, but not one is known to have the moral advancement of the Earth, so we're still central to the Universe.) This impatience with ambiguity can be criticized in the phrase: absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

From wikiquote for "the Demon Haunted World"

Edited by vitruvian12

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nor does it mean whatever you can dream up can be true

its not his.

I was being sarcastic and agree with you totally.

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I was being sarcastic and agree with you totally.

sorry, sarcasm is hard to get across and/or pick up on in this form sometimes

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sorry, sarcasm is hard to get across and/or pick up on in this form sometimes

yeah - I keep thinking i should denote sarcasm more overtly in my posts, but then I forget. I'll try to keep things clearer in the future.

Edited by orangepeaceful79

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So another (possibly) hoaxed Nessie picture? Alright then. Nothing new.

And why do people always think that because we're skeptical, we don't care or are not interested in the paranormal?

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So another (possibly) hoaxed Nessie picture? Alright then. Nothing new.

And why do people always think that because we're skeptical, we don't care or are not interested in the paranormal?

Because its easier for them to demonize and write off people who don't agree with them than it is to attempt to wrap their heads around an opposing viewpoint.

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Is it a double standard that anger is directed at skeptics rather than at the guy who deceived them?

This is a nice line, but it doesn't quite bear that much analysis. I myself am very angry at any hoaxer involved in the paranormal - but I have no means of getting at them.

I think that newspapers that have been hoodwinked by hoaxers should sue the person who perpetrated the hoax for deception (in ths case the`Daily Mail` as the former and George Edwards as the latter). However, this never happens, and do you know why? It is because the newspapers treat paranormal stories as `silly season` fillers and are not so concerned if they are the work of hoaxers or not, and hence never get incensed by it: a story is a story even if it involves trickery.

In this sense an attitude of sceptical cynicism and the hoax culture are in accidental cahoots: the hoaxers always ensure that paranormal stories are continually made to look silly and this then allows the cynics to never take the subject seriously enough to do anything to confront the hoax culture.

Edited by U. N.Owen

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UPDATE

Are those who have some vested interest (monetary, emotional, etc) in the subject (particularly paranormal subjects) less likely to own up when caught out pranking/hoaxing?

How many times have psychics, mediums, alternate archaeologists, paranormal researchers, monster hunters, etc been caught out pranking/hoaxing and how many have then actually owned up?

This is a damned good question to ask. Hoaxers seem to be a `species` in their own right. They can hardly be bracketed in with `believers` since they need to knowingly use tricks to deceive others, which means that they can't also be deceiving themselves whilst they're about it.

And,-you're right: they hang on to the bitter end as a rule. I suppose if you're audacious enough to commit an act of deception in the first place then whatever feeling that made you do it, also makes you soldier on regardless. There are some exceptions: for example the deathbed confession made concerning the 1934 `surgeon's photo` supposedly of Nessie.

However, it is also the case that within the history of Nessie hunting there has been quite an honourable tradition of firm believers being the ones out ahead in exposing frauds - see my earlier post #85.

Edited by U. N.Owen

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Because its easier for them to demonize and write off people who don't agree with them than it is to attempt to wrap their heads around an opposing viewpoint.

This won't do. Who on earth is `demonising` sceptics - other than just expressing occasional irritation with them? Examples needed! In what way can scepticism be described as an `opposing viewpoint` when it is the attitude which is dominant on this forum, particularly in the cryptozoological part of it? Why do you assume that people who happen to disagree with you are incapable of un derstanding your viewpoint? For that matter, why do you assume that posters can be neatly cartegorised into `believers` and `sceptics`: I am sometimes one and sometimes the other, and, I must say, I have noticed that believers find it much easier to enter into sceptic territory than vice versa. Who are the true closed minds therefore?

Stop trying to heroise yourself Orange. You express a viewpoint that is commonly found in `everyday life`: sometimes you express it well and constructively...but what gets up some people's noses is when you, and inferior versions of you, indulge in glib and pointless one liners which merely serve to close down the debate.This is just barracking, it is not debating: the internet equivalent of heckling at a public meeting. However, in spite of this, nobody, as far as I can see, is trying to `demonise` you, unless you can show me otherwise.

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This won't do. Who on earth is `demonising` sceptics - other than just expressing occasional irritation with them? Examples needed! In what way can scepticism be described as an `opposing viewpoint` when it is the attitude which is dominant on this forum, particularly in the cryptozoological part of it? Why do you assume that people who happen to disagree with you are incapable of un derstanding your viewpoint? For that matter, why do you assume that posters can be neatly cartegorised into `believers` and `sceptics`: I am sometimes one and sometimes the other, and, I must say, I have noticed that believers find it much easier to enter into sceptic territory than vice versa. Who are the true closed minds therefore?

Stop trying to heroise yourself Orange. You express a viewpoint that is commonly found in `everyday life`: sometimes you express it well and constructively...but what gets up some people's noses is when you, and inferior versions of you, indulge in glib and pointless one liners which merely serve to close down the debate.This is just barracking, it is not debating: the internet equivalent of heckling at a public meeting. However, in spite of this, nobody, as far as I can see, is trying to `demonise` you, unless you can show me otherwise.

Awww. Now settle down. I'll admit, "demonize" was probably a touch dramatic for what I was trying to get across. Sometimes my word choice isn't as precise as I'd like. I wasn't referring specifically even to a particular skewering I've recieved here regarding my skeptic nature. I was speaking in sort of fluffy, vague, general terms and you called me on it. So good on, you mate!

I don't fancy myself anyone's hero. I say way too many stupid things for that sort of title. I do know however that I have recieved more than a few personal attacks here in the forums and in personal messages that were in response to my inability to believe in things that don't seem to have convincing evidence in my opinion. Can I offer a specific example? Sure - go on over to the thread in the Ancient Mysteries section about why the sky is blue - that example is kind of a funny one actually. I'm sure that other skeptical minds here can offer other examples - indeed I hope they do.

I'm not perfect, nor are any of my posts. I do however try to keep the personal attacks out of the mix, although again - I'm not sure my track record on that is 100% either. I do get a little snarky sometimes and I know I've offended a few. I do try to offer up apologies when these things happen, as many can attest to.

Lastly - it is nice to hear from you again UN Owen. It seems that its been awhile.

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The keel of an overturned fishing boat?

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Awww. Now settle down. I'll admit, "demonize" was probably a touch dramatic for what I was trying to get across. Sometimes my word choice isn't as precise as I'd like. I wasn't referring specifically even to a particular skewering I've recieved here regarding my skeptic nature. I was speaking in sort of fluffy, vague, general terms and you called me on it. So good on, you mate!

I don't fancy myself anyone's hero. I say way too many stupid things for that sort of title. I do know however that I have recieved more than a few personal attacks here in the forums and in personal messages that were in response to my inability to believe in things that don't seem to have convincing evidence in my opinion. Can I offer a specific example? Sure - go on over to the thread in the Ancient Mysteries section about why the sky is blue - that example is kind of a funny one actually. I'm sure that other skeptical minds here can offer other examples - indeed I hope they do.

I'm not perfect, nor are any of my posts. I do however try to keep the personal attacks out of the mix, although again - I'm not sure my track record on that is 100% either. I do get a little snarky sometimes and I know I've offended a few. I do try to offer up apologies when these things happen, as many can attest to.

Lastly - it is nice to hear from you again UN Owen. It seems that its been awhile.

Thanks for that Orange: it's appreciated. I come and go - that's just my style. I also take on board much of what you have said above.

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Lastly - it is nice to hear from you again UN Owen. It seems that its been awhile.

Thanks for that Orange:it's appreciated. I come and go - that's just my style. I also take on board much of what you have said above.

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In this sense an attitude of sceptical cynicism and the hoax culture are in accidental cahoots: the hoaxers always ensure that paranormal stories are continually made to look silly and this then allows the cynics to never take the subject seriously enough to do anything to confront the hoax culture.

Hoaxers seem to be a `species` in their own right. They can hardly be bracketed in with `believers` since they need to knowingly use tricks to deceive others, which means that they can't also be deceiving themselves whilst they're about it.

I do not agree with the above points. It is my experience that paranormal fakery traditionally comes from two different sources:

1) the general public (with little to no knowledge of the subject they are faking) and,

2) from within the broad paranormal enthusiast/practitioner community (with little to great knowledge of the subject they are faking).

The casual hoaxers from the general public will usually readily admit to fakery when caught out (and even before) yet this does not/rarely ever happens when the hoaxer is from the broader paranormal enthusiast/practitioner community. It will be interesting to see if George Edwards 'fesses up or sticks to his claim and hopes it all blows over. Those with a will to deceive mesh seamlessly with those who have a need to believe and thus face exclusion from their paranormalist-peers on the admission of fakery. So, an unwritten rule for paranormal enthusiasts/practitioners seems to be that showmanship (including fakery) is okay but admitting to it is not. Comparitively, assuming no laws have been broken, the social sanctions imposed upon a hoaxer from the general public are minimal, at best. Seriously, who doesn't enjoy a good hoax/prank?

Furthermore, we humans have a tremendous capacity for self-deception. Perhaps Edwards really believes that he had a genuine sighitng even though the supporting evidence was fake. Personally, I am coming around to the position that far from being exceptions to be discarded from the data, fakery is an essential component of the paranormal experience...

The Loch Ness Monster has a special place for many of us here and it would be interesting to review it's history of alleged evidence - faked or otherwise - in order to get a better understanding of the phenomenon. Any takers? Who has some spare time to devote to tracking down the various "Nessie" photographic claims and how they panned out?

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