reply to post by Lasheic
I'm a bit off subject, but it's an important attempt at clarification.
UFOhunters... ah, well another reason why I say that nobody would use UFOHunters as a source for disclosing such profound revelation is because the
History Channel is an entertainment channel. There's a seemingly unaccounted for misconception here for many people. Just because they have an
"Educational" angle to their station, and a "History" angle on that, means absolutely nothing and adds no credibility to what you see there. They
are for entertainment first and foremost. If they can inform, ok, but it's not a requirement - nor is there a strong pressure for accuracy or
accountability in the statements they broadcast. If they are not there to entertain, then ask yourself, why do they show programs about modern
loggers, ice road truckers, and manufacturing - when they could be showing the history of those jobs? Why is it that the vast majority of the time
when they do have a program pertaining to history - it's general of a war or a piece relating to a recent popular movie or tragic a world event?
They're selling you something.
Now, considering the History Channel's bias towards selling things to viewers? See above. They know that maybe, just maybe, you're carrying around a
blue piece of glass - and they can entice you with a show that suggests some new research may reveal that bits of blue broken glass are really
Oh, and a side note: Many people, including myself, often site publications such as New Scientist as a source. I generally don't have a problem with
this, so long as the poster knows that New Scientist isn't a scientific journal, and it's publications are not peer-reviewed, even if they do detail
peer-reviewed papers. New Scientist is generally fairly good as a source, because they serve an important function of briefly covering the most
important findings across multiple fields - so that researchers can be alerted to important or stories that don't directly relate to their own field.
So their niche is important to protect for them, and the only thing which protects them is their own credibility. HOWEVER, they also serve as a
liaison between science and the public - so they do slant their publications in wording and what to present with public appeal in mind. Because of
this, they've been accused a few times of rampant speculation and misleading articles. It's been called "Scientific Pornography" by some
scientists for this reason.
There's a few key characteristics which define it as such that I've found, and I hope a viable demonstration of my thought process. First off, it's
not specialized. Scientific Journals are HIGHLY compartmentalized to specific fields of study because there is so much information to take into
account in each field that to become an expert in all sciences would be practically impossible. Most scientists are well educated across multiple
subjects, but not enough to really keep pace with the people actively working and studying those fields. There's plenty of examples of Physicists not
fully understanding Biology, or Cosmologists not knowing much about Paleontology. This is a trick disingenuous creationists have sometimes employed,
asking a question about "Stellar Evolution" to a Geneticist.
And again, it's the niche that New Scientist fills, which leads me to my next red flag. The articles do not resemble typical peer-reviewed scientific
publications. There's a lot of lingo and professional speak in peer-reviewed papers. They don't pull any punches when it comes to using accurate and
exact terms specific to that field - and if you can't keep up or understand the terminology of the field, you have no business critiquing it for
errors. That's a job for peers who know what the hell they're talking about, not Joe Blow. New Scientist breaks down discoveries into "layman's
terms" using colloquial language. It's not as specified and accurate, but you get a workable concept of it even if you're not familiar in the
Because reality works as a cohesive whole, discoveries in one field may profound affect research in a generally unrelated field. Such as Geology and
Cosmology. Now expecting everyone in science to have a expert level grasp of all fields is impractical and impossible - so their function allows
complex ideas to broken down into simple concepts which can be understood and transmitted far easier - so that scientists can recognize when research
in another field may have impact on their own - and thus contact that lab for clarification, expansion, collaboration, etc.
Lastly (because I'm bored and if you're still reading you're probably bored to) - you don't have to pay per paper in New Scientist the way you do
for current scientific journals. Although you can pay for subscriptions to both a Peer Reviewed Scientific Journal and Print-Stand magazine like New
Scientist - you'll notice that the subscription rates are much higher for Peer Review literature. I really suspect that some people might suggest
that this is to keep information out of the hands of the public. This is incorrect. The reason for this is that Peer Review journals do not rely
heavily on advertising revenue for their operation. This one of many measures taken in an effort to remove bias - because if they are a significant
portion of your funding, they hold leverage over what you publish by threat of cutting the purse strings and seeking other publications. By minimizing
advertisement income to supplementary rather than mandatory, there is less of a chance that a conflict of interest or suspected conflict of interest
will stall research. So YOU end up absorbing part of the cost of ensuring integrity. Understand that they also employ a larger and more specialized
staff than editorial journals - as they must maintain a board of qualified and active peers to review and fact check any submission for errors before
it's voted on for approval.
I may be wrong, over-reaching, or have my own misconceptions. I do not intend for this to be a comprehensive textbook example of "The Skeptic Mind"
or "The Scientific Method" - this is merely and mostly intended to show a glimpse of some of the stuff that runs through my head when analyzing
information for accuracy - with two main examples: A generally trusted source like New Scientist, and what I consider an untrustworthy source -
UFOHunters as well as some rational for why.
I don't wish to imply that my methodology is the only workable, because I know mine is susceptible to error. I tend to skim over texts looking for
keywords and patterns that indicate what I've come to identify as being associated with both accurate, honest but incorrect, and flat out
disingenuous information... and whether or not I should waste my time, look into it further, or bother refuting it.
At any rate, in closing, for some of the reasons I've mentioned above - I feel pretty safe in estimating the format for a cable-network TV show on an
entertainment channel will not be "on the scene" as something so profound to humanity as the evidence necessary to positively say "We are being
visited" is revealed. Not to mention why it's foolish to boast that it will in any way stifle the skeptics or vindicate a pseudoscientific
If there is any semblance of the scientific process at all shown in that program (and it's generally not, because TV and real Academia don't mix
well) it may simply confirm the presence of a new alloy we were previously unaware of... and that's it. That's all science could allow them to say.
It COULD BE A DISCLOSURE BLOWOUT - but I've seen this dog and pony show before, and it never... ever... ever... turns out that way.
So I stand by my magic prophecy. And if it's right... it'll PROVE that I could tell the future and am magical.
[edit on 4-5-2009 by Lasheic]