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Pseudoskeptics and Disinformants on ATS

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posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 07:59 AM
In 4 years of reading ATS I have become convinced that a troop of paid-disinformants is operating on ATS to stifle research, derail threads, make the good work of ATS members look stupid to the reader who only superficially browses a subject. These disinformants are often cloaked as skeptics but do not behave like real skeptics but rather like pseudoskeptics.

external source

The term pseudoskepticism (or pseudo-skepticism) denotes thinking that appears to be skeptical but is not. The term is most commonly encountered in the form popularised by Marcello Truzzi, through his Journal of Scientific Exploration, where he defined pseudoskeptics as those who take "the negative rather than an agnostic position but still call themselves 'skeptics'"[1] [2].

Sound familiar?

For all those Mars, UFO, 9/11, Paranormal, Ancient Civilizations researchers out there who have become disheartened by the onslaught of attacks of the pseudoskeptic and given up on their research, its high time to re-instate some confidence in researching views that deviate from the mainstream.

While a Professor of Sociology at Eastern Michigan University in 1987, Truzzi gave the following description of pseudoskeptics:While a Professor of Sociology at Eastern Michigan University in 1987, Truzzi gave the following description of pseudoskeptics:

In science, the burden of proof falls upon the claimant; and the more extraordinary a claim, the heavier is the burden of proof demanded. The true skeptic takes an agnostic position, one that says the claim is not proved rather than disproved. He asserts that the claimant has not borne the burden of proof and that science must continue to build its cognitive map of reality without incorporating the extraordinary claim as a new "fact." Since the true skeptic does not assert a claim, he has no burden to prove anything. He just goes on using the established theories of "conventional science" as usual. But if a critic asserts that there is evidence for disproof, that he has a negative hypothesis --saying, for instance, that a seeming psi result was actually due to an artifact--he is making a claim and therefore also has to bear a burden of proof.[3]

So much for the hysterical "show me evidence right now or its all untrue!" crowd.

This is particularly interesting:

Truzzi attributed the following characteristics to pseudoskeptics:
Truzzi attributed the following characteristics to pseudoskeptics:

The tendency to deny, rather than doubt [4]
Double standards in the application of criticism [5]
The making of judgments without full inquiry [6]
Tendency to discredit, rather than investigate [7]
Use of ridicule or ad hominem attacks in lieu of arguments[8]
Pejorative labeling of proponents as 'promoters', 'pseudoscientists' or practitioners of 'pathological science.'[9]

Presenting insufficient evidence or proof [10]
Assuming criticism requires no burden of proof [11]
Making unsubstantiated counter-claims [12]
Counter-claims based on plausibility rather than empirical evidence [13]
Suggesting that unconvincing evidence is grounds for dismissing it [14]

What is this thread for?

* It provides a thread you can link to the next time a pseudoskeptic tries to derail your thread or confuse readers not familiar with the depth of a topic.

* It invites discussion about the methods and tactics of the pseudoskeptic.

* It invites disucssion about the reality of paid disinfo-agents on this board (some of which I will contribute to).

Remember, the true skeptic is a welcome asset to real research. He says: "Maybe its true, but probably not". The pseudoskeptic contributes nothing to research. Before examining or discussing he shoots out: "This is bunk. Nothing to see here!" For some pseudoskeptics this has become daily routine on ATS. Zero contribution, much destruction.

The discovery of new things can only come about with the childlike (not childish) vigor that enthusiasm and "dreaming big dreams" produce. Ive seen the passion of many able ATS-researchers destroyed by a particular brand of scoffing, ridicule and attack. Go through the archives and look how many once great contributors to the site no longer come here.

Beware of the inflationary use of the words "show evidence!". Beware of the manipulative phrasing some of them use. Beware of the twisting of words and the taking-out-of-context of quotes. There are many propaganda-warlike methods the Disinfo-Agent and the Pseudoskeptic use.

Progress the cause of publishing alternative views and non-mainstream information.

[edit on 19-1-2008 by Skyfloating]

[edit on 19-1-2008 by Skyfloating]

+21 more 
posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 08:30 AM
Though i can undrstand your opposition to these pseudoskeptic's i think it also needs to be noted that there are many posters willing to post outrageous claims without attempting to corroborate them in any way.

Two sides to every coin.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 10:04 AM

Originally posted by mojo4sale
Though i can undrstand your opposition to these pseudoskeptic's i think it also needs to be noted that there are many posters willing to post outrageous claims without attempting to corroborate them in any way.

Two sides to every coin.

I expected this statement to come as a response to this thread. And of course its true. There´s some reallly stupid stuff out there.

But while most are aware of the nonsense posted, most dont seem to be aware of the tactics employed to discredit good research.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 10:14 AM
You should be aware, too, that there are some people mentally ill [psychosis].
And I am very serious. I have black list in paper of some nicknames to which I don’t answer any more as they apparently need psychiatric help.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 10:25 AM

Originally posted by Skyfloating
But while most are aware of the nonsense posted, most dont seem to be aware of the tactics employed to discredit good research.

I would give most of the members here more credit than that, i'm sure they are well aware of tactics used by some.
Most members of ATS are critical thinkers, its how they found there way here in the first place.
I dont blame you or others for getting frustrated i just think its fairly simple to deal with and if your research is as important as you believe it is then nothing should stand in your way of continuing it, particularly trolls.

I'll leave it at that though so that i dont appear to be one of those your complaining of.


cheers mojo.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 10:27 AM
Why is it that some threads seem to be unsubstatiated while in others 'proof' is demanded and sources questioned? Many things are not known at this time and many other theories are put forth by 'disreputable'
sources but, most significant information is not mainstream to begin with. The author of Dark Alliance, Gary? was hounded by the mainstream and government disinfo but, was spot on. There are a lot of theoretical musing on ATS that can't or won't be sourced by the so-called 'reliable' sources you know the experts, supporters of the status quo. New and soon to be acceptable info most often comes from outside the dominant paradigm.

[edit on 19-1-2008 by polanksi]

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 10:59 AM
Skyfloating I have noticed the traits of disinfo agents operating in our threads. I was here only two days when I started a thread about my UFO sighting. I had no proof so it quickly went to the thread graveyard. I wowed then not to create another thread unless I had absolute proof of what I was relating. I was very discouraged. I felt this was finally a place where I could discuss matters and not be considered nuts.

I have wondered if I had pictures, a piece of alien skin and numerous other solid evidence if I would be debunked by the disinfo people. Of course I don't have such evidence. I just have the idea there will never be enough proof for some people.

Whether these disinfo agents are paid or not is a good question. Who would they be working for and why? There are some people that would argue with a fence post and would never agree no matter how much evidence there was just for the sake of argument.

Thank you for presenting this information. It is very informative and will help me to better handle disinformation when I see it.

It's educational when members post others quotes and news articles. But it is most refreshing when a member uses his/her brain and share their ideas.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 11:17 AM
Thanks Skyfloating for putting into words so well what I myself have wanted to be able to say for sometime.

Let's just face it alot of the information discussed or attempted to be discussed is information that some groups of people just don't want in the public arena.

It is one thing to balance out a discussion with other views and another thing to try to kill the conversation, and yes it happens frequently on message boards.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 11:22 AM
Check out the Flight 93 thread.

I that thread it was proved that no plane crashed in Shanksville and not one debunker could offer any reality based proof that one did.

So in short Flight 93 was undebunkable, but if you check the 80 or so pages in the thread you can see the debunkers desperate attempts to derail or argue with people hoping to bury the great evidence presented on a page.

Dont get discouraged. Ignore them. THey are losing now and will from now on.

The truth always wins no matter how many lower life forms try to stop it.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 11:24 AM

Originally posted by dizziedame
Skyfloating I have noticed the traits of disinfo agents operating in our threads. I was here only two days when I started a thread about my UFO sighting. I had no proof so it quickly went to the thread graveyard. I wowed then not to create another thread unless I had absolute proof of what I was relating. I was very discouraged. I felt this was finally a place where I could discuss matters and not be considered nuts.

i too felt such relief when i discovered ats. i too became discouraged and frustrated. to keep going, i keep my eyes on my goal, take a break and regroup. there is always another way to skin a cat.

i too experienced and witnessed incredible science fiction, in real time, in my back yard'.

All in all, i refuse to allow the thread to die so therefore i search until such time as i am satisfied.

It seems as though threads w/lots of disinfo post need to be given a second chance. Why would disinfo members be there in the first place.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 12:35 PM

Vojvoda: Thats scary and sad. I ocassionally notice something like that too. It also reminds us of having a certain amount of compassion with each and every anynomous poster. Who knows what someone is going through.

Mojo: Critical thinkers are great. I could name a at least a dozen skeptics I really like...not the kinds of the militant "search and destroy" types...but Im not gonna name names.

Polanski: True. Theres information out there that can get you killedwithin minutes of publication. I spent a lot of time reading through the archives of ATS. Its strange how many researchers on ATS have suddenly "disappeared", never to post again. "Last Login: April 15, 2004".
Maybe some really have gotten removed, while others just lost interest.

Dizziedame: I too have started threads with enthusiasm to share something great only to have the young flowers ripped apart before they even start blooming.

But after a few years of reading here you start to see a pattern with certain posters. The pattern is:

* They dont open their own threads
* They dont participate in any threads then one topic
* Every single post of theirs ridicules or attacks the topic.

Dont believe it? The archives make for an informative read. Check peoples profiles once in awhile. Check out their patterns of posting and their patterns of interest.

Im not saying that all of them are disinformants, but most are suspicious to say the least.

interestedalways: "To kill a thread" is the right expression. Rather than offering a balanced counter-view, you notice how some posters act like they urgently, urgently want you to stop posting, stop talking, stop researching.

IvanZana: Yes, there are hundreds, if not thousands of threads like that.
What often happens though is that a reader will get discouraged of looking into it if that reader keeps reading stuff like "This has been deebunked a long time ago. Nothing to see here. Move on!" But we´ll keep on pushing for more truth and more truth yet.

Musselwhite: I wasnt aware of that thread. Good one. Maybe a dangerous one.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 01:20 PM

Originally posted by Skyfloating

Musselwhite: I wasnt aware of that thread. Good one. Maybe a dangerous one.

the word "dangerous" has been used on several occasions when speaking of rabbit holes - searching for alice. the author of the essay "Underground Infrastructures - The Missing 40 Trillion" by Steven J. Smith emailed with the same warning.

would you be so kind and elaborate on your thinking?

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 01:44 PM
Musselwhite: I didnt mean to sound mysterious. What I meant is:

If what you (and many others) post on ATS is true, then there are real dangersinvolved in discussing certain things. I tend to believe your thread on the underground facilities.

We post hardcore truths here without one bit of protection. Thats amazing.

(A few pictures in your thread might have been helpful though.)

[edit on 19-1-2008 by Skyfloating]

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 01:57 PM
reply to post by Skyfloating

There are other outside factors that contribute to the whole but the most pressing issues are: (1) it does exist this rabbit-hole and (2) Project Blue Beam is but one source of mass control.

I reiterate, laying these truths aside, what would one?

IMO, by telling what I know to be true, is to inform. I want to know and understand. knowledge is the beginning of understanding and wisdom is the right application. i do note have the wisdom part down. I've done what was in my power to do.

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 03:13 PM
Hey, I joined in last November. It's just when people say someone in a shape shifter, cat person or reptilian (which is also the same as shape shifter?) and provide no way at all to back up their claim, it just sounds like a person who is tired of reality and decides to enter in their own little universe in their mind that is the equivalent of starwars. I mean, I have seen where skeptics show these people evidence that the person is mistaken, yet they still believe it. I think one thing to take into consideration(even though it may be embarrassing) is to admit and see that we are wrong in some instances. We're all human (though some may argue that
) and we all make mistakes (my spelling is a great example of that). So some of us keep on fooling ourselves into stupidity and ignorance. I'm open-minded and skeptical and critical thinking. Some of the evidence (such as on the 9/11 thread) has really made it clear that some of these conspiracies and stuff is true because no other explanation makes a bit of sense or offers real evidence. Good idea starting this thread though.

Hey sense I'm new could you u2u me those who you think are pseudo skeptics or paid dis-info agents? I promise not to harass or anything, that's not my style


posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 03:22 PM
*Checks Website*

Yep, ATS. Which means everything is a conspiracy.

People making outrageous claims? Those are misinformationists paid to make the rest of conspiracy theorists look silly. Couldn't be that an internet site will attract stupid and crazy people.

People demanding proof of theories? Has to be paid debunkers. Couldn't be that an internet site can attract real jerks and pseudointellectuals. Also couldn't be that some members are fed up with some of the subject matter (see: Banning of Reptilian Videos in A &U :up

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 03:52 PM
I think that the OP is right when he suggests that there are paid disinfo agents in these forums. I don't believe they are numerous. A lot of the pig headed unreasonable responses to legitimate threads of inquiry can be written off to that medusa-headed phenomenon known as human psychology.

Paraphrasing Frank Zappa, "people are what they is" i.e., individual and often ornery.

It is useful to remember though that this is the dawning of the age of "asymmetric warfare." When things start going inexplicably wrong it might be wise to keep that in mind. You might be at war without knowing it.

It is also the age of cyberwarfare. That's the main reason I believe there are paid disinfo agents in these forums. Rooting around on the web in connection with the thread "O.J. Simpson: Sacking the Truth?" . . .

. . . I found an interesting link that mentioned in passing a record company executive that had been unmasked by hackers as using his company's employees to post fabricated opinions on internet boards. Here's a quote:

A good indicator of a cover-up is the extent and vehemence of attacks on all who question the "official" story. There are now on the internet persons, possibly organized cults, perhaps even auto responding, mock-bot engines, that denigrate individuals who disagree with the popular wisdom. The sameness of the responses, the childlike, new-age phrasing, the pedanticism, the personal aspersions, all indicate a primitive sort of artificial intelligence. Hackers recently uncloaked the president of a major Hollywood record company, or more likely his overworked and underpaid minions, posting over 7000 messages to various newsgroups on a variety of subjects.

So, (not quite) bottom line. If the above is true, it's out there, and if it's out there, it is probably in here as well.

I look at this stuff philosophically, maybe stoically is the right word. I think you have to keep your faith in truth, honesty and sincerity and trust in people's common sense. Most people eventually see through the B.S. Often times a sense of humour helps as well. There is no better straight man than a nitwit.

[edit on 19-1-2008 by ipsedixit]

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 04:04 PM
Superb post Skyfloating

I've made the occasional similar observation on one or two threads here on ATS, but you've put your points far more extensively and eloquently than I ever could.

Like you, I have no problem with genuine skepticism, but I do have a problem with debunking. One involves a critical and analytical look at a given situation, the other is derailing the message/situation at any cost... and if the message can't be derailed then attack the messenger.

Have a star and a flag

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 04:16 PM
If I disagree with you; you think I'm a dis-info agent. If you disagree with me; I think your a dis-info agent.

I think most here are simply posting their beliefs. If an argument won't withstand posts by those who disagree the point of the post is probably meaningless or fantasy in the first place. Truth has a way of surviving. Would you rather everyone just present whatever they want and only those who agree with them add to the thread? I think most of us would leave in that case.

How hard is it too ignore posts you don't like?

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 04:22 PM

I can't believe there are still posts like this being made. Did you either bother searching for a related topic before posting this?

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