Call me...


Hello
T he atheist rejects the claim that there is a
supernatural entity or force that interacts with existence...
Because it is a claim without basis.

Atheism makes no claims whatsoever.
Atheism asserts nothing.
Atheism IS NOT an act or an action
IT IS a position
 It has no objective.
Comparatively / Conversely:
Anti-theism IS an act or an action
 It IS NOT a position
 It has an objective.
Not all ATHEISTS are ANTI-THEIST.
All ANTI-THEISTS are ATHEIST.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Debunking 101

(Excerpts from the "Debunking Handbook" by John Cook & Stephan Lewandowski - Published on/by and found at skepticalscience.com)

The last thing you want to do when debunking misinformation is blunder in and make matters worse.
So this handbook has a specific focus - providing practical tips to effectively debunk misinformation and avoid the various backfire effects.
To achieve this, an understanding of the relevant cognitive processes is necessary.


It's not just what people think that matters, but how they think.

When people hear misinformation, they build a mental model, with the myth providing an explanation. When the myth is debunked, a gap is left in their mental model. To deal with this dilemma, people prefer an incorrect model over an incomplete model. In the absence of a better explanation, they opt for the wrong explanation.

For the alternative to be accepted, it must be plausible and explain all observed features of the event. When you debunk a myth, you create a gap in the person's mind. To be effective, your debunking must fill that gap.

One gap that may require filling is explaining why the myth is wrong.

This can be achieved by exposing the rhetorical techniques used to misinform.
  • The techniques include cherry picking, conspiracy theories and fake experts.

Another alternative narrative might be to explain why the misinformer promoted the myth.
  • Arousing suspicion of the source of misinformation has been shown to further reduce the influence of misinformation.

Another key element to effective rebuttal is using an explicit warning ("watch out, you might be misled") before mentioning the myth.
  • Experimentation with different rebuttal structures found the most effective combination included an alternative explanation and an explicit warning.

When people read a refutation that conflicts with their beliefs, they seize on ambiguities to construct an alternative interpretation.
  • Graphics provide more clarity and less opportunity for misinterpretation.
  • If your content can be expressed visually, always opt for a graphic in your debunking.

(LGT PDF on my Google Docs)
http://goo.gl/zC42k

Here is the original:
http://www.skepticalscience.com/docs/Debunking_Handbook.pdf

I am making this material available in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107: This article is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License