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I don't think he's a fraud, but you're right about people with some sort of notoriety, so yes, he intended to be somewhat selective and didn't necessarily intend to test 30 million people. For one thing, his rules do something like narrow down the probability of a feat happening by chance alone to something like 1 in a million (though I don't recall the exact figure, but it's something like that). For example, if you flip a coin 20 times and get all heads, that's roughly a one in a million occurrence. But if you flip a coin 20 times and do that a million times, and one of those times you get all heads, that doesn't mean you had a special ability, that will happen just by random chance.
Originally posted by Ryanp5555
reply to post by Son of Will
I read that he only accepts people of some sort of notoriety (i.e. article in paper published about him). I did not know he was a "fraud." Then again, I'm not sure being selective equates to being a fraud. I find it interesting that over the last 20 yearsish he's only brought on 360 people.
On January 4, 2008 it was announced that the prize would be discontinued on March 6, 2010 in order to free the money for other uses. In the meantime, claimants were welcome to vie for it. One of the reasons offered for its discontinuation is the unwillingness of higher-profile claimants to apply. However, at The Amaz!ng Meeting 7, it was announced that the $1 Million Challenge prize would not expire in 2010. This was also confirmed in the July/August issue of Skeptical Inquirer, in which Randi is additionally quoted as saying: "It was going to terminate... but now it will continue."
I assume if you can make a woman from one of your ribs like Eve was made from Adam's rib, you'd also get the prize.
Originally posted by Headcrusher23
In topic title it also says eve along with occult power, what is eve?
If you look into his "contest", you'll find that he only accepts pre-screened contestants.
Of course he's biased, he's offering a million dollars to put his money where his biased mouth is.
Originally posted by Headcrusher23
I heard about this contest a while ago, but it seemed like the host person was biased.
Since nobody has ever passed the preliminary testing, that hasn't been an issue.
Originally posted by Bordon81
Going to be a little tough to get a jury together that could observe a contest objectively and award the prize..
Originally posted by The Cusp
second of all, that contest is no longer valid, and lastly there were so many shinnanigans with his preliminary tests that they were far from unbiased.
Originally posted by Son of Will
Yes, Randi is a fraud. If you look into his "contest", you'll find that he only accepts pre-screened contestants. That means, he has to personally make sure they "fit the bill" before allowing them to even compete. Needless to say, he's come across and turned down hundreds of people who did not "fit the bill". I wonder why?
The Cusp can clarify if he meant something else, the first level of screening is that you have to be able to get a newspaper or some kind of media to do a feature on your ability, which, if you really have one, shouldn't be too hard to do:
Originally posted by EthanT
Where does it say he only accepts pre-screend clients and what are the conditions? Could you provide a web link?
So getting featured in a news story is intended to help filter out cases of people who are delusional, which if you search youtube you can probably find examples of people who seem to be delusional because they demonstrate so-called "abilities" which apparently exist only in their mind because the videos don't show any paranormal abilities to me. If people want to fault them for not wanting to waste a lot of time on delusional cases, I can't understand why unless those people are also delusional.
Issue 2: I’ve never been featured in a news story.
Response: Newspapers and news stations love human interest stories. Contact one and ask that they run your story. If you can really perform what you claim, that should be no problem!
Issue 3: You didn’t used to have this rule. Why do you have it now?
Response: The JREF has spent valuable time and resources investigating claims that were submitted by people who were obviously suffering from a mental ailment. These people need medical help, not encouragement. By requiring media presence, the JREF ensures that only those people who make an impact on society will be tested, and the individuals who are mentally ill receive no encouragement to continue their delusions
1.3 How many people have applied for the Challenge?
Between 1964 and 1982, Randi declared that over 650 people had applied. Between 1997 and February 15, 2005, there had been a total of 360 official, notarized applications. Applications continue to pour in!
1.4 Has anyone ever gotten past the preliminary test?
No. Some people use this fact as a reason not to apply – and yet the protocol is never altered once the applicant agrees to it. In fact, we ask the applicant to design the test.
1.5 Has anyone taken the formal test?
No. Applicants must pass the preliminary test in order to move on to a formal test. So far, no one has ever performed the paranormal ability they claimed to have.
He might find it exciting to give away the money. It's already set aside in a special account, so it's not like it will come out of his pocket.
I always took Randi as a debunker with an agenda and had my suspicions about his test. But, as I understand it, a lot of big names in the business like John Edwards, Sylvia Browne, etc all refused to take part in his test.
They give an example of an applicant they just couldn't and wouldn't test because he claimed to put some kind of a spirit inside a stone, and they couldn't come to any kind of agreement on how to even test for that.
(2) Has there ever been a time when you thought, "This is the one that will take the prize?"
No. I wish there were some really challenging offers or claims, just to add some excitement to my job, but it's pretty well the same old material, endlessly repeated....
(4) Why does it appear that you only test persons with very minor and even frivolous claims, and not the prominent "psychic" performers and/or scientists who appear on television and in the media, and who write books about their careers?
We can only test persons who either apply to become claimants for the million-dollar prize, or who will actually submit themselves to undergoing proper test procedures. The "stars" never do this, and in fact they do anything they can to avoid us and our challenge; they would rather just run on about past glories, point to anecdotal evidence, or grandly ignore our genuine offer to test them. The people who do apply are probably honestly convinced of their abilities, and have no fear of discovery. Where are James Van Praagh, Sylvia Browne, George Anderson, John Edward, and the rest of the current "big names"? And why hasn't Uri Geller, the professional spoon-bender (remember him from the 70s?) snapped up this easy cash? One can only wonder.
We at JREF must offer to test any and every applicant, because we cannot be the judges of whether a claim is likely to be valid.