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General Discussions => General Discussion => Topic started by: Eternally Learning on March 21, 2018, 02:13:57 PM

Title: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 21, 2018, 02:13:57 PM
This is a question that had been rattling around in my head for a while now as more and more questionable things occurred in relation to the show and its panel.  There have been some things that disappointed me but I could let slide because ultimately they aren't doing anything bad, just not doing things I think they should.  A good example would be that I feel they should be leading the discussion about sexual harassment and abuse within the community as well as how we should be parsing these disappointing and disgusting revelations as Skeptics­.  There have been questionable choices that could potentially mean some pretty bad things but are ambiguous enough that I can't bring myself to jump to conclusions that would contradict what I've come to know about them over the years; hiring a pretty nasty lawyer to defend them and possibly the whole community against SLAPP suits for example.  And then there are things that absolutely rub me the wrong way and frankly shock me to see them do, but I'd be possibly willing to overlook in a vacuum because of how much good they've done, including for me personally.  I think of the recent promotion of Brian Dunning encapsulates this very nicely too.

Up until a few weeks ago, I had been reluctantly willing to more or less be disappointed and confused but still continue to support them, recommend them, and listen to them despite it.  I reached my breaking point however, when someone confided something in me (which I won't discuss or even allude to here so please don't ask and please don't hypothesise amongst yourselves either) that I just couldn't overlook.  Unless the SGU starts addressing these issues that I feel are incredibly valid and stops ignoring them altogether, then I just don't see how I can support them anymore and can't bring myself to listen to them anymore either.

So I guess the point of this thread is not to discuss my personal grievances with them, but rather to take the temperature of everyone else about what their current feelings about about the show and its panelists are, and what it would take for you personally to stop supporting them to. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 21, 2018, 03:43:04 PM
"Stop listening," and "stop supporting," are two different things, and for me would involve different considerations. I would stop supporting them if I were convinced that they were committing fraud, supporting bigotry, or actively opposing someone I like or approve of. Otherwise I'm just paying for a show I enjoy. I buy things I enjoy from people I dislike all the time. Most of what I buy comes from corporations I disapprove of. (My new car is one of the very few exceptions, since I really like Tesla.)

I would stop listening if the show stopped being entertaining or informative, and in that case I would also stop supporting it.

There are shows I listen to but don't support. I continue to find Skeptoid interesting, so I keep listening, in spite of my mixed feelings about Brian.

I cannot think of anything that seems likely the rogues would do that would turn me away from them, but then I don't have your information, and if I had it I might not trust it. I'm not sure how I feel about your statement that "somebody" told you something but you won't share it. It feels a lot like Joseph McCarthy waving his sheaf of papers and claiming they are "evidence" that there are two hundred (don't remember the number he asserted) communists in the State Department. Except more vague, since you're not making any specific claim or saying you have evidence, just implying that there's "something" bad enough, and that you trust enough to be true, to put you off them.

I think that if I knew, or thought I new, something that bad about someone, I'd either come out and say it, or not mention it at all. Give them a chance to respond, or just stop supporting them and keep my mouth shut. Not say "I heard something really horrible about so-and-so but I won't tell you what it is."
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Nosmas on March 21, 2018, 04:01:17 PM
"Stop listening," and "stop supporting," are two different things, and for me would involve different considerations. I would stop supporting them if I were convinced that they were committing fraud, supporting bigotry, or actively opposing someone I like or approve of. Otherwise I'm just paying for a show I enjoy. I buy things I enjoy from people I dislike all the time. Most of what I buy comes from corporations I disapprove of. (My new car is one of the very few exceptions, since I really like Tesla.)

I would stop listening if the show stopped being entertaining or informative, and in that case I would also stop supporting it.

There are shows I listen to but don't support. I continue to find Skeptoid interesting, so I keep listening, in spite of my mixed feelings about Brian.

I cannot think of anything that seems likely the rogues would do that would turn me away from them, but then I don't have your information, and if I had it I might not trust it. I'm not sure how I feel about your statement that "somebody" told you something but you won't share it. It feels a lot like Joseph McCarthy waving his sheaf of papers and claiming they are "evidence" that there are two hundred (don't remember the number he asserted) communists in the State Department. Except more vague, since you're not making any specific claim or saying you have evidence, just implying that there's "something" bad enough, and that you trust enough to be true, to put you off them.

I think that if I knew, or thought I new, something that bad about someone, I'd either come out and say it, or not mention it at all. Give them a chance to respond, or just stop supporting them and keep my mouth shut. Not say "I heard something really horrible about so-and-so but I won't tell you what it is."

TLDR: I own a Tesla. ;D

But really this is similar to how I view it and the reaction I had to the "I know something bad" statement. I have mostly stoped listening lately as I'm kind of tired of the show, it's format and topics. I'll probably pick it up again soon when I'm sick of current podcasts. I would only commit to not listening any more if I stopped finding the show entertaining and interesting, if they outright promoted something I'm very against or if they were exposed as hypocritical with regards to skepticism. Some major sacred cow like belief in a ridoculous conspiracy theory, or refusal to accept overwhelming scientific consensus would do it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gebobs on March 21, 2018, 06:21:00 PM
I'd stop listening if they all had a revelation and started god-bothering. ;-)

I know there's a lot of collective angst about Shermer, Joshie Berger, Dawkins, Krauss etc. and frankly I just don't have the time or energy to wade through all that crap to make any kind of informed judgment. Are they still buds with the Rogues? Should I care? As far as Dunning goes...not a big deal for me.

I don't like the ads for Blue Apron because they are non-GMO. Honestly though, I'm not sure if they still do ads for them. At any rate, I easily tune them out.

I don't support them financially. It's a worthy cause but my donations go to animal rescue and such. And I don't see the value in added content. The one show each week is enough for my Monday commute to Athens Georgia. I'm forever trying to catch up on the others.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on March 21, 2018, 09:20:10 PM
Thanks for bringing this up, Eternally Learning. This is a question I've really struggled with, too. On one hand, I've been a listener since the beginning, and am incredibly grateful for the role that the SGU has played in my life. On the other, I find a few of the SGU's actions, positions, and associations to be extremely troubling, and have caused me to question whether I should continue listening and contributing. I stopped contributing for a while because of Marty Klein and Marc Randazza, but now I'm back to contributing. I felt like the positive outweighed the negative.

I question whether I'm doing the right thing, though. The thing that troubles me the most is how the SGU often tries to sweep their mistakes under the rug. Where is the follow up on Randazza, Dunning, and Berger interviews? These are not pleasant issues to engage with, but the only way to improve the skeptical community is to have frank discussions about its flaws. I feel like the SGU has failed in this regard.

I'm very worried about whatever issue pushed you over the edge with your support of the SGU. It's discouraging to know that there is even more bad stuff out there than what I am currently aware of.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 22, 2018, 11:19:51 AM
I don't know how the SGU needs to apologize or be held accountable for other people's behavior, if the behavior is unrelated to skepticism.
As for the lawyer, as scummy as he is, if I were taking up an anti-Slapp lawsuit, I'd give hiring someone who has experience a serious consideration--no matter his other positions and cases.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 22, 2018, 12:57:53 PM
... I'm very worried about whatever issue pushed you over the edge with your support of the SGU. It's discouraging to know that there is even more bad stuff out there than what I am currently aware of.

Do we know that there is more "bad stuff"? We only know that one person was told something that disturbed him but that he's unwilling to share. In my opinion, it is extremely bad form to say of someone "I know some horrible stuff about so-and-so but I won't say what it is." The implication is "If you knew what I know, you would not like that person either."

What's been said cannot be unsaid, but IMO Eternally Learning should have stuck with the issues he's willing to talk about, without adding ... and I know something terrible about them also.... Especially when that something terrible is hearsay.

I'll base my opinions and support or non-support of the rogues on their performance on the show and what's publicly known about them. If there are allegations I'll try to judge those as well as I can, taking into account my best judgement of the reliability of the accuser. But I will not be swayed by hints that an unknown accuser has made unknown allegations.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 22, 2018, 01:41:43 PM
On one hand, I've been a listener since the beginning, and am incredibly grateful for the role that the SGU has played in my life.

Slightly OT, but would you mind laying out the role it has played in your life? I'd be curious to learn. :)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 22, 2018, 01:48:11 PM

I cannot think of anything that seems likely the rogues would do that would turn me away from them, but then I don't have your information, and if I had it I might not trust it. I'm not sure how I feel about your statement that "somebody" told you something but you won't share it. It feels a lot like Joseph McCarthy waving his sheaf of papers and claiming they are "evidence" that there are two hundred (don't remember the number he asserted) communists in the State Department. Except more vague, since you're not making any specific claim or saying you have evidence, just implying that there's "something" bad enough, and that you trust enough to be true, to put you off them.

I think that if I knew, or thought I new, something that bad about someone, I'd either come out and say it, or not mention it at all. Give them a chance to respond, or just stop supporting them and keep my mouth shut. Not say "I heard something really horrible about so-and-so but I won't tell you what it is."

Agreed.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: mindme on March 22, 2018, 02:40:19 PM
I think if the show members suddenly became religious and proselytized on their show, started proclaiming some pseudo science was real, became overtly political (of course I'd have a higher tolerance if they were more left), or went the Sargon/MRA route and started attacking feminists and social justice issues, I'd probably stop listening. I'd probably stop if one of the cast members committed a really horrible crime (rape/murder) or became an unrepentant harasser of women. I think the male cast are all married. I might feel bad if I found out, say, Dr. N cheated on his wife (and the other woman was a consenting partner) but I probably wouldn't stop listening. If Dr. N. or Evan etc developed a rep for chasing skirts and making women feel uncomfy, I would stop listening.

Ultimately a podcast is partially about the material but also about the relationships I form with these people who talk between my ears. They are friends to me even if they don't know who the fuck I am. If they became slime dogs, no matter how informative they were, I'd probably chuck them. Like, I can't pick up a Richard Dawkins book anymore because I just can't take the guy as a decent human being anymore.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on March 22, 2018, 02:46:45 PM
I don't support them so that's not an issue.

I'd stop listening if:
They got boring
They started flogging some obvious woo.
They started flogging something that was dubious without acknowledging that the science wasn't firm.
They started having folks like Randazza on on a regular basis.
They started wading into politics much more.  A little if fine but I have other folks I listen to for that.

I don't fault them for hiring Randaza, seems like he's a good choice for an anti-slap suit, I do fault them for giving him a microphone.  Aside from his doucheyness, the interview was just out of character for the podcast. 

I still listen to Skeptoid despite my belief that he never really came close to acknowledging his own guilt.  His various statements all come across as a bit self serving. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 22, 2018, 02:51:50 PM
It remains to be seen if EL will reveal what he has in mind. He (she?) has sort-of thrown the bait here.

Like, I can't pick up a Richard Dawkins book anymore because I just can't take the guy as a decent human being anymore.

Has Dawkins done anything worse than some obtuse comments on social media? I have never heard of him ever being accused of being a harasser or anything of the like. I think he has made some mistakes (on social media), but is nowhere near beyond the pale. (And pointing out absurd Islamic beliefs are not among the mistakes.)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on March 22, 2018, 05:08:51 PM
Their main strength is that they're a group of 3-5 talking each week. If it gets boring was my first point too. One person talking, or two people tag teaming, it's just not as engaging as a conversation.

Sometimes I get annoyed with the topic itself, but the main segment that I skip, especially on a second listen, is the interview.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on March 22, 2018, 08:05:04 PM
On one hand, I've been a listener since the beginning, and am incredibly grateful for the role that the SGU has played in my life.

Slightly OT, but would you mind laying out the role it has played in your life? I'd be curious to learn. :)

I've struggled with a serious health issue for many years that has often led me to be very socially isolated. When the SGU started (and I was fortunate to discover them almost immediately!) I was completely alone, had no college degree, and was very uncertain about the direction of my life. The podcast ended up being one of the bright spots in my life every week. I began to think of the rogues as my "friends" (I hope that isn't too weird or messed up). It was wonderful to listen to conversation from people who shared my interests, my general approach to logical thinking and analysis, and my sense of humor. They made me feel less alone. Over the years, I pursued a career in STEM, and got my bachelors, masters, and PhD degrees, worked in research, and am now a professor. During times of adversity and loneliness, I always saw my time each week with the SGU as a pleasant escape.

I'm sure that I've put Steve and the rogues on too much of a pedestal over the years, and this has made me react especially strongly when I've perceived them as making serious errors in judgement. Above all, though, I've been disappointed by their resistance to acknowledging or discussing these controversies.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: superdave on March 22, 2018, 08:30:07 PM
I stopped listening a long time ago but more because of boredom than anything else.
I got into the podcast at an exciting time for skepticism.  it was hot on the heals of the creationism trial in dover and the autism vaccine nonsense.  It seemed like we were actually winning. 

But the podcasts and the movement's relationship to social issues did start to bother me more and more over time. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 23, 2018, 05:31:12 AM
On one hand, I've been a listener since the beginning, and am incredibly grateful for the role that the SGU has played in my life.

Slightly OT, but would you mind laying out the role it has played in your life? I'd be curious to learn. :)

I've struggled with a serious health issue for many years that has often led me to be very socially isolated. When the SGU started (and I was fortunate to discover them almost immediately!) I was completely alone, had no college degree, and was very uncertain about the direction of my life. The podcast ended up being one of the bright spots in my life every week. I began to think of the rogues as my "friends" (I hope that isn't too weird or messed up). It was wonderful to listen to conversation from people who shared my interests, my general approach to logical thinking and analysis, and my sense of humor. They made me feel less alone. Over the years, I pursued a career in STEM, and got my bachelors, masters, and PhD degrees, worked in research, and am now a professor. During times of adversity and loneliness, I always saw my time each week with the SGU as a pleasant escape.

I'm sure that I've put Steve and the rogues on too much of a pedestal over the years, and this has made me react especially strongly when I've perceived them as making serious errors in judgement. Above all, though, I've been disappointed by their resistance to acknowledging or discussing these controversies.

I feel you man. I don't have the same background as you do, but the SGU and affiliated outlets (Neurologica) have been my main intellectual influences as a skeptic, and generally really. If asked to define "skeptic", I'd root for Steve's definition (http://www.skepticblog.org/2008/11/17/skeptic-the-name-thing-again/). I wish I too had discovered the SGU much earlier than I actually did. I think we all may have put them on pedestals over the years.

One thing that I have found that helps is trying to have more skeptical influences than just one, the SGU in this case. To recognize that the skeptical movement is not just made up of one outlet, but many. It makes it easier to acknowledge that they are merely faulty humans. And that mistakes will be made is unavoidable.

I'd wish the SGU took more interest in the various issues of the skeptical community. It's bad enough that they still link (https://www.theskepticsguide.org/resources/links) to Michael Shermer's site, or that he is able to keep on without any consequences, including being a columnist at Scientific American. At the same time, the pushback against Lawrence Krauss is encouraging. It might be a turning point within organized skepticism and atheism. At least we can hope so.

It should also be remembered that there are many skeptical groups around the world that should not be tarnished by failures within American organized skepticism. When the allegations against Krauss were fist published, I saw quite a few British skeptics on Facebook lash out hard, trying to make sure that no skeptic group in the UK invites him, and to "be better than the American skeptics" (not exact quote). The Australian Skeptics Inc also made a strong statement (https://www.skeptics.com.au/2018/03/12/asi-statement-on-sexual-harassment-at-skeptics-events/) on Krauss:

Quote
ASI and the various skeptical groups around Australia take the issue of harassment (sexual or otherwise) very seriously. We have behaviour policies in place and robust processes that ensure that any complaint is dealt with immediately and appropriately. We also do not invite speakers whose behaviour we suspect could cause attendees or other speakers to feel uncomfortable, unwelcome, or threatened.

In that context, and based on what we know, ASI will not be inviting Prof Krauss to any events in the foreseeable future.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 23, 2018, 07:59:55 AM
... I'm very worried about whatever issue pushed you over the edge with your support of the SGU. It's discouraging to know that there is even more bad stuff out there than what I am currently aware of.

Do we know that there is more "bad stuff"? We only know that one person was told something that disturbed him but that he's unwilling to share. In my opinion, it is extremely bad form to say of someone "I know some horrible stuff about so-and-so but I won't say what it is." The implication is "If you knew what I know, you would not like that person either."

What's been said cannot be unsaid, but IMO Eternally Learning should have stuck with the issues he's willing to talk about, without adding ... and I know something terrible about them also.... Especially when that something terrible is hearsay.

I'll base my opinions and support or non-support of the rogues on their performance on the show and what's publicly known about them. If there are allegations I'll try to judge those as well as I can, taking into account my best judgement of the reliability of the accuser. But I will not be swayed by hints that an unknown accuser has made unknown allegations.

Sorry, I realized after the fact that I maybe should have just said nothing about it, but by then the damage was done.  I was not trying to rumor-monger, I was just trying to say that I'd found the thing that pushed me over the edge, and wanted to know what would it take for everyone else.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 23, 2018, 08:31:52 AM
Everyone here has had different experiences with the show and has different reasons for listening and/or supporting them.  For me, it's almost entirely because I valued the integrity with which Steve approached everything, regardless of whether the answer would be something he'd prefer or not.  The fact he's apparently pretty much not responding to anything and has done some other things I find questionable runs completely contrary to that.  Coupled with the fact I've grown to really need the show less, it just made it a clearer answer for me.

I don't know how the SGU needs to apologize or be held accountable for other people's behavior, if the behavior is unrelated to skepticism.
As for the lawyer, as scummy as he is, if I were taking up an anti-Slapp lawsuit, I'd give hiring someone who has experience a serious consideration--no matter his other positions and cases.

I don't ask them to apologize or be held accountable for any actions but their own.  In terms of the grievances I've mentioned, it mainly boils down into two categories: I'm disappointed with them not addressing large and important issues within the community that they are long-time leaders in, and I'm angry and disappointed that they've not responded in a meaningful way (or at all) to valid questions about their conduct. 

With the former, I know it's long stood that they seem very averse to stepping into any political or socially contentious conversations as they say that they want to focus on science and skeptical news.  The thing is, there are some real and deep schisms that are widening with every passing day in the Skeptical community because of these issues and almost all of the conversations are taking place among angry people with much smaller and ubiquitous built in audiences.  The SGU is one of the most universally respected groups in the entire community and Steve is one of the most universally respected people.  As far as I'm aware, they have the largest regular audience of any podcast dedicated to skepticism.  They are the perfect show with the perfect format to talk about how we, as skeptics, should be dealing with the #metoo movement.  What is the best way, as skeptics, to deal with the common perception of a conflict between actions which leave very little evidence but yet when ignored cause massive harm?  It would be immensely effective if they showed their audience how to process each accusation against famous skeptics and atheists as they happen so that they can spread that around.

If I had to guess, I'd say they are just afraid that taking any stance will instantly polarize a large portion of their audience against them, but that is a pretty disappointing and cowardly way to approach a topic and it seems absolutely contrary to how they would approach any other topic in the main stream consciousness.  That said, while it really disappoints me to see them not stepping up, I can more or less forgive them for it since they at least aren't doing any harm by not talking about it.  It's maybe akin to the deputy that didn't go into the Parkland school when he heard the shooting; incredibly disappointing that he didn't step in and attempt to help, but I can't really shit on him too much for it since it's only natural to not want to die, which he almost certainly would have I'd think.

With the latter, I'm much more upset with them.  For instance, when it came out that at least Jay and his wife were told that Joshie Berger had beat his girlfriend before he was invited back on the show, Steve just dropped in to say that he was sad about the news and would not have Joshie back on the show, but never addressed the biggest issue that it appeared like it was only the public learning of it that prompted this action.  Maybe that's the case, maybe it's not, but Steve won't say so we can't know either way.  I don't like something that serious being left unanswered because it seems to be taking advantage of our skeptical nature to avoid the issue; we can't know for sure that it happened so we can't throw around any real accusations.  Then, even worse with Dunning, Steve said that he and Brian would be on hand to talk about it and it never happened.  Brian stayed around for a minute, berating and dismissing out of hand any concerns raised, and Steve said nothing about essentially asking his listeners to donate to a man who was convicted of fraud and is apparently unrepentant about it.  As for Randazza, I've never hired a lawyer before and certainly not to defend myself in a SLAPP suit, so my point is not that they are wrong because I can see many potential reasons for why they may have wanted to choose him.  My point is that who he is seems to be at extreme odds with who I think the SGU is and I would really like them to say something about why that is and why it's not problematic for them.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on March 23, 2018, 09:14:38 AM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: random poet on March 23, 2018, 10:03:24 AM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

But yeah it doesn't sound like Bob's on good terms with his ex.

For the original question, I haven't listened to a whole episode in like a year or more.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on March 23, 2018, 10:12:24 AM
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

But yeah it doesn't sound like Bob's on good terms with his ex.

For the original question, I haven't listened to a whole episode in like a year or more.
Haha, I thought the original voice sounded better, shows what I know. But really calling your ex psychotic or whatever he said (don't quote me) seems a bit unfair being as she can't give her assessment of him and have it memorialized in a podcast.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on March 23, 2018, 10:16:28 AM
Haha, I thought the original voice sounded better, shows what I know. But really calling your ex psychotic or whatever he said (don't quote me) seems a bit unfair being as she can't give her assessment of him and have it memorialized in a podcast.
I found that distasteful as well.  Its one thing to do that when hanging out with your brothers, almost expected, but when you and your brothers are recording a podcast?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 23, 2018, 10:31:41 AM
Everyone here has had different experiences with the show and has different reasons for listening and/or supporting them.  For me, it's almost entirely because I valued the integrity with which Steve approached everything, regardless of whether the answer would be something he'd prefer or not.  The fact he's apparently pretty much not responding to anything and has done some other things I find questionable runs completely contrary to that.  Coupled with the fact I've grown to really need the show less, it just made it a clearer answer for me.

I don't know how the SGU needs to apologize or be held accountable for other people's behavior, if the behavior is unrelated to skepticism.
As for the lawyer, as scummy as he is, if I were taking up an anti-Slapp lawsuit, I'd give hiring someone who has experience a serious consideration--no matter his other positions and cases.

I don't ask them to apologize or be held accountable for any actions but their own.  In terms of the grievances I've mentioned, it mainly boils down into two categories: I'm disappointed with them not addressing large and important issues within the community that they are long-time leaders in, and I'm angry and disappointed that they've not responded in a meaningful way (or at all) to valid questions about their conduct. 

With the former, I know it's long stood that they seem very averse to stepping into any political or socially contentious conversations as they say that they want to focus on science and skeptical news.  The thing is, there are some real and deep schisms that are widening with every passing day in the Skeptical community because of these issues and almost all of the conversations are taking place among angry people with much smaller and ubiquitous built in audiences.  The SGU is one of the most universally respected groups in the entire community and Steve is one of the most universally respected people.  As far as I'm aware, they have the largest regular audience of any podcast dedicated to skepticism.  They are the perfect show with the perfect format to talk about how we, as skeptics, should be dealing with the #metoo movement.  What is the best way, as skeptics, to deal with the common perception of a conflict between actions which leave very little evidence but yet when ignored cause massive harm?  It would be immensely effective if they showed their audience how to process each accusation against famous skeptics and atheists as they happen so that they can spread that around.

If I had to guess, I'd say they are just afraid that taking any stance will instantly polarize a large portion of their audience against them, but that is a pretty disappointing and cowardly way to approach a topic and it seems absolutely contrary to how they would approach any other topic in the main stream consciousness.  That said, while it really disappoints me to see them not stepping up, I can more or less forgive them for it since they at least aren't doing any harm by not talking about it.  It's maybe akin to the deputy that didn't go into the Parkland school when he heard the shooting; incredibly disappointing that he didn't step in and attempt to help, but I can't really shit on him too much for it since it's only natural to not want to die, which he almost certainly would have I'd think.

With the latter, I'm much more upset with them.  For instance, when it came out that at least Jay and his wife were told that Joshie Berger had beat his girlfriend before he was invited back on the show, Steve just dropped in to say that he was sad about the news and would not have Joshie back on the show, but never addressed the biggest issue that it appeared like it was only the public learning of it that prompted this action.  Maybe that's the case, maybe it's not, but Steve won't say so we can't know either way.  I don't like something that serious being left unanswered because it seems to be taking advantage of our skeptical nature to avoid the issue; we can't know for sure that it happened so we can't throw around any real accusations.  Then, even worse with Dunning, Steve said that he and Brian would be on hand to talk about it and it never happened.  Brian stayed around for a minute, berating and dismissing out of hand any concerns raised, and Steve said nothing about essentially asking his listeners to donate to a man who was convicted of fraud and is apparently unrepentant about it.  As for Randazza, I've never hired a lawyer before and certainly not to defend myself in a SLAPP suit, so my point is not that they are wrong because I can see many potential reasons for why they may have wanted to choose him.  My point is that who he is seems to be at extreme odds with who I think the SGU is and I would really like them to say something about why that is and why it's not problematic for them.

I agree with much of what you say. I would like the rogues to address issues within the skeptic community. It's one of the many things I miss since Rebecca left the show. But I also understand their desire to keep the show about science, though that would be a lot stronger if they didn't spend so much time talking about their personal lives and their love of space opera shows. I don't think I've ever known anybody with whom I've agreed on everything, so even though I'd prefer they address the issues of harassment within the movement and take a stand openly against individuals who've committed acts of violence, I'm not prepared to stop supporting them on the grounds that they've chosen to avoid those topics.

If it came out that any of them had committed an act of violence, and that person were not roundly condemned and kicked off the show, that would make me quit supporting them, though I might still listen as long as the show continues to be informative and entertaining.

I've had friends who I deeply disagree with on important matters. As long as they are not personally cruel, and as long as they do not advocate depriving others of basic rights. Maybe my bar for cutting people off is higher, because my own personality makes it hard for people to like me, and that carries over here.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on March 23, 2018, 10:42:06 AM


If it came out that any of them had committed an act of violence, and that person were not roundly condemned and kicked off the show, that would make me quit supporting them, though I might still listen as long as the show continues to be informative and entertaining.

Surely there must be some qualifiers on that?  If one of them had been in a bar fight 20 years ago, would you really care?  If not I'm sure there's some threshhold of violence that would transition from not caring to not listening anymore?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 23, 2018, 11:04:58 AM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

But yeah it doesn't sound like Bob's on good terms with his ex.

I thought it way Jay's ex. But in any case, I can't hold it against any podcast producer that they don't use their ex as intro voice.

For the original question, I haven't listened to a whole episode in like a year or more.

To relate to the original question, how come?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on March 23, 2018, 11:11:01 AM
I thought it way Jay's ex. But in any case, I can't hold it against any podcast producer that they don't use their ex as intro voice.

Who would ever know? I think that's petty.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 23, 2018, 11:34:01 AM

With the former, I know it's long stood that they seem very averse to stepping into any political or socially contentious conversations as they say that they want to focus on science and skeptical news. 
That is their mission statement from the very beginning. There are PLENTY of other people that can bring in the other stuff if they want.


The thing is, there are some real and deep schisms that are widening with every passing day in the Skeptical community because of these issues and almost all of the conversations are taking place among angry people with much smaller and ubiquitous built in audiences. 

I see no reason for them to jump to a sideshow.

 They are the perfect show with the perfect format to talk about how we, as skeptics, should be dealing with the #metoo movement.
Why? As much as I support the #metoo movement, them getting into it would be far outside their mission statement and their expertise.  Nothing perfect about them getting into areas that fall outside--well outside their mission statement.

It would be immensely effective if they showed their audience how to process each accusation against famous skeptics and atheists as they happen so that they can spread that around.
They aren't lawyers. They shouldn't be expected to parse testimonials. Skepticism can help, but most of what is involved here is not much more than testimonies.
It's maybe akin to the deputy that didn't go into the Parkland school when he heard the shooting; incredibly disappointing that he didn't step in and attempt to help, but I can't really shit on him too much for it since it's only natural to not want to die, which he almost certainly would have I'd think.
That's a fucking crappy and heartless analogy.  There mission is NOT to police the community for anything other than scientific integrity.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 23, 2018, 02:27:38 PM


If it came out that any of them had committed an act of violence, and that person were not roundly condemned and kicked off the show, that would make me quit supporting them, though I might still listen as long as the show continues to be informative and entertaining.

Surely there must be some qualifiers on that?  If one of them had been in a bar fight 20 years ago, would you really care?  If not I'm sure there's some threshhold of violence that would transition from not caring to not listening anymore?

Yes, you are right. I was just trying to say that if one of them turned out to be an s.o.b. who hurt people it would turn me against them. But a decision to stay out of personal and political issues is, in itself, not enough to make me stop supporting them. There are things that annoy me about them, such as spending air time talking about fantasy, or Jay's over-the-top enthusiasm for unlikely things (e.g. his rant about how FSD cars would enable your hotel room to detach from the building and pick you up at the airport) or their occasional praise of meat. But none of these is going to make me quit supporting them. As for the Randazza thing, when you're being taken to court you want the best lawyer you can get for the type of case, and if they felt he was the best, that's fine with me. I have a low opinion of lawyers generally. As for bringing Dunning on the show, I'd not have done that, but in the catalog of crooks, he's pretty small potatoes, and again, not that big a deal for me. In fact, I could argue that bringing Dunning on the show they just gave him the rope he needed to hang himself.

The perfect is the enemy of the good. They are doing good work, and that's good enough for me. They're not perfect. Obviously, some of that stuff is so important to some folks that they cannot give their support. But nobody's ever going to do things exactly the way I think is best, and I appreciate when people do something that is good.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: random poet on March 23, 2018, 02:56:20 PM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

But yeah it doesn't sound like Bob's on good terms with his ex.

I thought it way Jay's ex. But in any case, I can't hold it against any podcast producer that they don't use their ex as intro voice.
Not sure, I might have substituted a brother, there.
For the original question, I haven't listened to a whole episode in like a year or more.

To relate to the original question, how come?
Lack of time, shifting interests, disillusionment about the skeptical scene.

Also, if only iTunes could play podcasts at x2 speed, I might actually still listen, maybe?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on March 23, 2018, 03:14:11 PM

Also, if only iTunes could play podcasts at x2 speed, I might actually still listen, maybe?
Pocket Cast, anything under 1.5x sounds like everyone's drunk.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: random poet on March 23, 2018, 03:23:46 PM

Also, if only iTunes could play podcasts at x2 speed, I might actually still listen, maybe?
Pocket Cast, anything under 1.5x sounds like everyone's drunk.
I KNOW, RIGHT?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on March 23, 2018, 04:44:09 PM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

Actually, they first replaced the voice with another fake accent before Iszi volunteered to record it.  They made the change at the same time that they switched the theme song to a version recorded by George Hrab, and for the same reason: they were going to start syndicating the show in sattelite radio, and did not have broadcast rights to the track (which was podsafe, but only for non-commercial use).
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on March 23, 2018, 09:51:15 PM
I am particularly bothered when the SGU avoids clarifying their positions under the guise of not wanting to wade into non-science topics. The controversies that I want them to address are ones that they've already waded into on their own. They gave a platform to Marty Klein (on multiple interviews and NECSS), Marc Randazza (interview and NECSS), Brian Dunning, and Joshie Berger. The SGU is clearly friendly with these people, and allowed them to use the SGU to self-promote and promulgate their views. The SGU follows up when they screw up science facts, and they should follow up with their interviews, too.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Tassie Dave on March 23, 2018, 10:10:39 PM
I don't expect them to be perfect. The only thing that would stop me listening was if they stopped being interesting and/or relevant.

I don't know what more they can do regarding Joshie. Steve has said he will never be back on the show. Bringing it up on the show isn't really required. They have tried to avoid personal attacks and stick to science and skepticism. They would only be repeating what has been brought up on this forum. They are hardly going to be able to investigate it or get either of the 2 people involved to talk about it on the show.

More could be said about Dunning. He has admitted guilt though he has tried to mitigate it and make himself come off as hard done by. Not unknown among convicted fraudsters.
He does appear to be more interested in the money side of skepticism than the education side. Putting all his past content behind a pay wall isn't in the best interest of reaching the non-skeptics.
I still listen to his show. Only to hear about subjects that I'm not familiar with. I find his voice, style and delivery actually annoying. More than 10 minutes and I would probably give it a miss.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 23, 2018, 10:25:42 PM
I think this kind of subject is more appropriate for blogposts (Neurologica) than for being on the podcast.

Not to defend anyone or anything, but I guess that in Steve's eyes, as he has previously (https://theness.com/neurologicablog/index.php/pz-replies/) stated (https://theness.com/neurologicablog/index.php/scientific-skepticism-rationalism-and-secularism/) that he thinks sexism and racism are unacceptable within the skeptical movement, there is no need for him to say anything further regarding various individuals. I have noticed over the years that he is not prone to repeat himself very much.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: moj on March 24, 2018, 12:06:38 PM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

But yeah it doesn't sound like Bob's on good terms with his ex.

I thought it way Jay's ex. But in any case, I can't hold it against any podcast producer that they don't use their ex as intro voice.
Not sure, I might have substituted a brother, there.
For the original question, I haven't listened to a whole episode in like a year or more.

To relate to the original question, how come?
Lack of time, shifting interests, disillusionment about the skeptical scene.

Also, if only iTunes could play podcasts at x2 speed, I might actually still listen, maybe?

Sames, I don't listen to podcast nearly as much as I use to but when I do don't have time for ones that long. I'm also less involved or care about skepticms as a movement. I was a a lot more active from 07-12 but it really shat the bed and don't see how it can successed in its current state. I still agree with being pro science, and favoring truth and logic. I think being part of the skeptical movement makes pushing those goals harder, not easier. No need for anther label, skeptic, just be.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 26, 2018, 12:31:24 AM

With the former, I know it's long stood that they seem very averse to stepping into any political or socially contentious conversations as they say that they want to focus on science and skeptical news. 
That is their mission statement from the very beginning. There are PLENTY of other people that can bring in the other stuff if they want.

I don't think you must have fully understood what I said in that post.  My whole point was that there were multiple categories of the negative feelings I have towards the show.  The one here is not one that makes me angry in the least.  At worst, I would say that it's intensely disappointing that they are not using their unique position in the community to at least broach the subject on occasion.

The thing is, there are some real and deep schisms that are widening with every passing day in the Skeptical community because of these issues and almost all of the conversations are taking place among angry people with much smaller and ubiquitous built in audiences. 

I see no reason for them to jump to a sideshow.

I would hardly call it a sideshow.  At any rate, it's certainly no more a sideshow than movie reviews and discussions about personal PC upgrades.


 They are the perfect show with the perfect format to talk about how we, as skeptics, should be dealing with the #metoo movement.
Why? As much as I support the #metoo movement, them getting into it would be far outside their mission statement and their expertise.  Nothing perfect about them getting into areas that fall outside--well outside their mission statement.

Because skepticism is being commonly invoked as a reason to not act on these accusations for one.  For another, it's a major topic of conversation in just about all the arenas that they usually discuss things in; politics, science communication, the skeptical and atheist communities, and so on.  You say these topics are outside their area(s), I say it's perfectly within it (them) as the whole point is to discuss how skeptics interpret and parse these types of accusations that actually effect them.  Maybe someone like Al Franken would be a bit superfluous, but certainly Krauss isn't. 


It would be immensely effective if they showed their audience how to process each accusation against famous skeptics and atheists as they happen so that they can spread that around.
They aren't lawyers. They shouldn't be expected to parse testimonials. Skepticism can help, but most of what is involved here is not much more than testimonies.

I'm not asking for answers to legal questions.  I'm asking for a discussion about how individuals parse these kinds of things which would lead to them continuing to support or stopping their support of people like Krauss. 

It's maybe akin to the deputy that didn't go into the Parkland school when he heard the shooting; incredibly disappointing that he didn't step in and attempt to help, but I can't really shit on him too much for it since it's only natural to not want to die, which he almost certainly would have I'd think.
That's a fucking crappy and heartless analogy.  There mission is NOT to police the community for anything other than scientific integrity.

Not sure why it's heartless.  I concede the analogy doesn't 100% line up with what I'm describing in the SGU so maybe it could reasonably be called crappy, but most analogies break down at some point or another or else they wouldn't be analogies; they'd be the same thing.  Clearly, the only correlation I was intending to draw was that in both cases, I see a missed opportunity to have made a difference by someone well-placed to do so, but it's hard to hold it against them too much given that acting on that opportunity entails a decent amount of risk.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 26, 2018, 12:42:59 AM
The perfect is the enemy of the good. They are doing good work, and that's good enough for me. They're not perfect. Obviously, some of that stuff is so important to some folks that they cannot give their support. But nobody's ever going to do things exactly the way I think is best, and I appreciate when people do something that is good.

I don't expect perfection, but when item after item stacks up that I actually do care about, I begin to ask when it is too much for me to accept.  The main reason for starting this thread was to get a feel for where everyone else's lines were.  Also, if I'm honest, to vent a little too.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 26, 2018, 09:19:41 AM
I would hardly call it a sideshow.  At any rate, it's certainly no more a sideshow than movie reviews and discussions about personal PC upgrades.

I wish they would leave off the movie reviews and discussions about personal PC upgrades, as well as all the fandom about fantasy/fiction. I listen to the show for science and skepticism, not to be a voyeur into their private lives or to learn about the latest fantasy movie.

The perfect is the enemy of the good. They are doing good work, and that's good enough for me. They're not perfect. Obviously, some of that stuff is so important to some folks that they cannot give their support. But nobody's ever going to do things exactly the way I think is best, and I appreciate when people do something that is good.

I don't expect perfection, but when item after item stacks up that I actually do care about, I begin to ask when it is too much for me to accept.  The main reason for starting this thread was to get a feel for where everyone else's lines were.  Also, if I'm honest, to vent a little too.

That's perfectly legitimate. If the show annoys you and/or you don't find it interesting, then you shouldn't listen. I hope I'm not criticizing you for your opinions, and I certainly don't intend to. But answering your question, the things that annoy you do not bother me, or at least not enough to spoil my enjoyment of the show.

The line that would get me to stop listening is where it stops being fun to listen to; and the line that would get me to stop supporting is if I no longer cared to listen, or they did something I regarded as reprehensible. Failing to denounce other skeptics does not meet that criterion for me. Even inviting a convicted criminal on the show does not meet it for me. After all, I'm a convicted criminal myself.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 26, 2018, 10:35:31 AM

Not sure why it's heartless.
Because you are using a tragic murder to advance your completely unrelated point. It is cheap and disgusting.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 26, 2018, 10:36:19 AM
I don't think you must have fully understood what I said in that post. 

You think wrong.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on March 26, 2018, 01:44:04 PM
... I'm very worried about whatever issue pushed you over the edge with your support of the SGU. It's discouraging to know that there is even more bad stuff out there than what I am currently aware of.

Do we know that there is more "bad stuff"? We only know that one person was told something that disturbed him but that he's unwilling to share. In my opinion, it is extremely bad form to say of someone "I know some horrible stuff about so-and-so but I won't say what it is." The implication is "If you knew what I know, you would not like that person either."

What's been said cannot be unsaid, but IMO Eternally Learning should have stuck with the issues he's willing to talk about, without adding ... and I know something terrible about them also.... Especially when that something terrible is hearsay.

I'll base my opinions and support or non-support of the rogues on their performance on the show and what's publicly known about them. If there are allegations I'll try to judge those as well as I can, taking into account my best judgement of the reliability of the accuser. But I will not be swayed by hints that an unknown accuser has made unknown allegations.

I really really appreciate that Eternally Learning didn't say anything. I am the one who confided. Instead of being public about what happened, I discussed it directly with them but have been disappointed by their response.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on March 26, 2018, 01:45:11 PM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?

That same rogue says bad stuff about a LOT of women.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on March 26, 2018, 01:46:02 PM
One of the rogues talking about a former wife (girlfriend?) in derogatory tones bothered me. That was quite some time ago. The original female British voice of the podcast was summarily removed, what was that all about? Did she request to be removed or was her former rogue partner feeling butthurt?
That was Bob's ex wife putting on an accent (badly). She was not British. When they had the opportunity to get Iszi to record a proper version, they took it. (Also, who would wants to listen to one's ex-partner's voice every week?)

But yeah it doesn't sound like Bob's on good terms with his ex.

For the original question, I haven't listened to a whole episode in like a year or more.

No, it was Jay's ex wife.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on March 26, 2018, 01:50:38 PM
Anyone who wants to know about the incedent(s) Eternally Learning is referring to, can pm me.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 26, 2018, 02:13:44 PM
I wonder what will happen now...
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gebobs on March 26, 2018, 03:09:02 PM
I just want to go on record that I would definitely stop listening to them if they spent any significant amount of time delving into these sideshows.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 26, 2018, 03:43:33 PM

Not sure why it's heartless.
Because you are using a tragic murder to advance your completely unrelated point. It is cheap and disgusting.

I missed the part where I made an emotional appeal of any kind to make my point. It was simply the thing thay popped into my mind as similar because it recently happened. If anything, you are appealing to emotion in order to dismiss the point I was making.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 26, 2018, 04:43:41 PM
Anyone who wants to know about the incedent(s) Eternally Learning is referring to, can pm me.

Thank you for the offer. I briefly considered taking you up on it. But then decided that I'm really not interested in hearsay. If there is evidence of scurrilous behavior, I imagine you or someone would make it public. If it's just hearsay allegations, I guess I'm really not interested.

Back in the 1960's and 1970's when the Vietnam war was raging and people (including myself) were protesting, there was a lot of paranoia and fear of CIA or FBI spies in the peace movement, and from time to time someone would accuse someone else of being a spy. It left me with a very low tolerance for unsupported accusations. A friend of mine once told me that before he and I first met, a friend of his had told him he thought I was a spy. I'm thankful that he laughed off the accusation and we later became good friends, and still are.

Ten or twenty years before that, people's lives were ruined by unsupported accusations that they were communists (even though there was never any law against being a communist or a member of the Communist Party and the Party was never illegal in the U.S.)

If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations. Unsupported accusations are hurtful at best, and tragic at worst. If there's actual evidence that one or more of the rogues have done something reprehensible, I want to know. But whispers and gossip are not the way to go and if it's not something you can post to an open forum then it never should have been hinted at here in the first place.

Don't make accusations you cannot back up with facts.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 26, 2018, 04:44:47 PM

Not sure why it's heartless.
Because you are using a tragic murder to advance your completely unrelated point. It is cheap and disgusting.

I missed the part where I made an emotional appeal of any kind to make my point. It was simply the thing thay popped into my mind as similar because it recently happened. If anything, you are appealing to emotion in order to dismiss the point I was making.

What the fuck. You compared them to the DEPUTY whose job it was to protect people, who didn't go and try to save people who were getting murdered.

Seriously what is wrong with you?
I've seen people on this forum say some fucked up things, but this was beyond the pale.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 26, 2018, 05:08:12 PM

Not sure why it's heartless.
Because you are using a tragic murder to advance your completely unrelated point. It is cheap and disgusting.

I missed the part where I made an emotional appeal of any kind to make my point. It was simply the thing thay popped into my mind as similar because it recently happened. If anything, you are appealing to emotion in order to dismiss the point I was making.

What the fuck. You compared them to the DEPUTY whose job it was to protect people, who didn't go and try to save people who were getting murdered.

Seriously what is wrong with you?
I've seen people on this forum say some fucked up things, but this was beyond the pale.

If you're just going to ignore everything I say in response to your points and instead focus on something I didn't say (that it was their responsibility to protect us from anything or that what I wanted them to comment on was akin to murder) then why even bother talking to me?  According to you my analogy is not correct because kids being killed is bad when that has nothing to do with what I said in the least. Remove the emotional context and just look at the substance of what I've said. If you really think I'm the type of person who either, A. Doesn't care about murdered children or, B. Is using them as an emotional appeal to win an internet argument then you are so bad at reading people that I see no point in talking to you any further about this.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on March 27, 2018, 09:19:23 AM
For what its worth, the use of the analogy to the recent school shooting was ill chosen.  It does immediately inject a load of emotion into the conversation that was all but guaranteed to derail the conversation.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on March 27, 2018, 09:58:10 AM
Anyone who wants to know about the incedent(s) Eternally Learning is referring to, can pm me.

Thank you for the offer. I briefly considered taking you up on it. But then decided that I'm really not interested in hearsay. If there is evidence of scurrilous behavior, I imagine you or someone would make it public. If it's just hearsay allegations, I guess I'm really not interested.

Back in the 1960's and 1970's when the Vietnam war was raging and people (including myself) were protesting, there was a lot of paranoia and fear of CIA or FBI spies in the peace movement, and from time to time someone would accuse someone else of being a spy. It left me with a very low tolerance for unsupported accusations. A friend of mine once told me that before he and I first met, a friend of his had told him he thought I was a spy. I'm thankful that he laughed off the accusation and we later became good friends, and still are.

Ten or twenty years before that, people's lives were ruined by unsupported accusations that they were communists (even though there was never any law against being a communist or a member of the Communist Party and the Party was never illegal in the U.S.)

If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations. Unsupported accusations are hurtful at best, and tragic at worst. If there's actual evidence that one or more of the rogues have done something reprehensible, I want to know. But whispers and gossip are not the way to go and if it's not something you can post to an open forum then it never should have been hinted at here in the first place.

Don't make accusations you cannot back up with facts.

Jfc I didn't see this before I PM'd you, but this is a TERRIBLE reply. This is why people don't and won't come forward.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Enkidu Shamesh on March 27, 2018, 11:04:50 AM

If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations.


I'm guessing that you are against the Me Too movement then, and believe Bill Cosby was railroaded by a bunch of, uh, I'm not sure what it would take for 30+ women to independently accuse a man of drugging and raping them, but since they don't have any evidence I guess it didn't happen and poor Bill is the real victim, right?

Prior probability is a thing. Someone that comes to believe someone else is a secret communist is not the same as someone saying that they were sexually harassed/assaulted/raped. There is *nothing* to be gained by accusing a public figure of sexual harassment/assault/rape, unless you think someone is being paid a large sum of money to make the accusation - i.e. you have to invent a conspiracy. One of Roy Moor's accusers had her house set on fire FFS.

It's one thing to talk about the fallibility of personal testimony and memory, another to assume someone is lying. I can certainly imagine some crazy woo-woo with an axe to grind with organized skepticism making a false accusation; I find it harder to fathom why a skeptic would do so.  My guess is that the reaching out that was done was to see if there are any other victims as he said she said is less compelling than he said she said, she said, she said, she said, she said . . .

At the very least I see no problem in withholding judgment. Plenty of otherwise admirable people have turned out to be sex monsters, and plenty more, while short of that, have been found to have serious boundary issues. I cannot imagine a single public figure that I could definitively say could never have done anything like that. Bill Cosby turned out to be a serial rapist. Bill Fucking Cosby. So yeah, I find it plausible, and if more people turn up making accusations against the same person, people with no possible reason to lie, I will have no trouble believing it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Belgarath on March 27, 2018, 11:29:25 AM
Anyone who wants to know about the incedent(s) Eternally Learning is referring to, can pm me.

Thank you for the offer. I briefly considered taking you up on it. But then decided that I'm really not interested in hearsay. If there is evidence of scurrilous behavior, I imagine you or someone would make it public. If it's just hearsay allegations, I guess I'm really not interested.

Back in the 1960's and 1970's when the Vietnam war was raging and people (including myself) were protesting, there was a lot of paranoia and fear of CIA or FBI spies in the peace movement, and from time to time someone would accuse someone else of being a spy. It left me with a very low tolerance for unsupported accusations. A friend of mine once told me that before he and I first met, a friend of his had told him he thought I was a spy. I'm thankful that he laughed off the accusation and we later became good friends, and still are.

Ten or twenty years before that, people's lives were ruined by unsupported accusations that they were communists (even though there was never any law against being a communist or a member of the Communist Party and the Party was never illegal in the U.S.)

If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations. Unsupported accusations are hurtful at best, and tragic at worst. If there's actual evidence that one or more of the rogues have done something reprehensible, I want to know. But whispers and gossip are not the way to go and if it's not something you can post to an open forum then it never should have been hinted at here in the first place.

Don't make accusations you cannot back up with facts.

You're really a bad person if this is your response.  Basically you just told every woman who's assault didn't occur on video from 6 different angles to shut up and color. 

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on March 27, 2018, 11:37:05 AM
"Nothing to be gained from making accusations" is an argument from ignorance. Either there's evidence to make a case, or there isn't.

Someone making accusations is a starting point, somewhere from which an investigation can be launched. But if it remains all accusations, and if it hasn't been through the courts (if it's a matter of crime rather than something that can be tested by anyone), then yes, we should continue to withhold judgement.

If people want to share sensitive information through direct messages rather than on a public forum, that's fine. If it's meant to hold some legal weight, well, either way if it's not public information, it can't have weight in a public discussion.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on March 27, 2018, 12:46:19 PM
Anyone who wants to know about the incedent(s) Eternally Learning is referring to, can pm me.

Thank you for the offer. I briefly considered taking you up on it. But then decided that I'm really not interested in hearsay. If there is evidence of scurrilous behavior, I imagine you or someone would make it public. If it's just hearsay allegations, I guess I'm really not interested.

Back in the 1960's and 1970's when the Vietnam war was raging and people (including myself) were protesting, there was a lot of paranoia and fear of CIA or FBI spies in the peace movement, and from time to time someone would accuse someone else of being a spy. It left me with a very low tolerance for unsupported accusations. A friend of mine once told me that before he and I first met, a friend of his had told him he thought I was a spy. I'm thankful that he laughed off the accusation and we later became good friends, and still are.

Ten or twenty years before that, people's lives were ruined by unsupported accusations that they were communists (even though there was never any law against being a communist or a member of the Communist Party and the Party was never illegal in the U.S.)

If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations. Unsupported accusations are hurtful at best, and tragic at worst. If there's actual evidence that one or more of the rogues have done something reprehensible, I want to know. But whispers and gossip are not the way to go and if it's not something you can post to an open forum then it never should have been hinted at here in the first place.

Don't make accusations you cannot back up with facts.

Jfc I didn't see this before I PM'd you, but this is a TERRIBLE reply. This is why people don't and won't come forward.



If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations.


I'm guessing that you are against the Me Too movement then, and believe Bill Cosby was railroaded by a bunch of, uh, I'm not sure what it would take for 30+ women to independently accuse a man of drugging and raping them, but since they don't have any evidence I guess it didn't happen and poor Bill is the real victim, right?

Prior probability is a thing. Someone that comes to believe someone else is a secret communist is not the same as someone saying that they were sexually harassed/assaulted/raped. There is *nothing* to be gained by accusing a public figure of sexual harassment/assault/rape, unless you think someone is being paid a large sum of money to make the accusation - i.e. you have to invent a conspiracy. One of Roy Moor's accusers had her house set on fire FFS.

It's one thing to talk about the fallibility of personal testimony and memory, another to assume someone is lying. I can certainly imagine some crazy woo-woo with an axe to grind with organized skepticism making a false accusation; I find it harder to fathom why a skeptic would do so.  My guess is that the reaching out that was done was to see if there are any other victims as he said she said is less compelling than he said she said, she said, she said, she said, she said . . .

At the very least I see no problem in withholding judgment. Plenty of otherwise admirable people have turned out to be sex monsters, and plenty more, while short of that, have been found to have serious boundary issues. I cannot imagine a single public figure that I could definitively say could never have done anything like that. Bill Cosby turned out to be a serial rapist. Bill Fucking Cosby. So yeah, I find it plausible, and if more people turn up making accusations against the same person, people with no possible reason to lie, I will have no trouble believing it.

I was talking to Eternally Learning, who had posted, in effect, Somebody, but I won't say who, told me something, but I won't say what, about one of the rogues, but I won't say which one.

That was what I was talking about when I said don't make accusations without evidence. People absolutely should come forward when they are abused. I completely support the Me Too movement. I oppose someone saying "I heard something bad about so-and-so but I won't tell you what it was or where I heard it."

I do not think it's appropriate for someone who I do not know to PM me with an accusation against someone I do not know, and who I have no power to correct or discipline. What I said was that the person who has been abused should either make the accusation publicly, where the accused could answer, or go to the people involved or to an authority who is empowered to take appropriate measures. What good is served by privately telling someone who is entirely outside of the loop and knows none of the people involved?

I received an unsolicited PM and replied to it and then was excoriated for sending an unsolicited reply to an unsolicited PM. I have no ability to investigate the accusation or to do anything about it. The accusation should be made in a venue where there are people who can corroborate or investigate. The act alleged is absolutely unacceptable and should be investigated and measures taken. As a mere poster on this board, I am the wrong person to make the accusation to.

I repeat: When I said don't make accusations without evidence, I was not speaking to the victim of the action. I was speaking to Eternally Learning, who posted:

Quote
I reached my breaking point however, when someone confided something in me (which I won't discuss or even allude to here so please don't ask and please don't hypothesise amongst yourselves either) that I just couldn't overlook.

In my opinion, that post was inappropriate, and that is all I was referring to. Victims of abuse should always come forward and the authorities should take such accusations seriously and should investigate and take appropriate action. Abuse is unacceptable and should be dealt with.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on March 27, 2018, 01:07:47 PM
For what its worth, the use of the analogy to the recent school shooting was ill chosen.  It does immediately inject a load of emotion into the conversation that was all but guaranteed to derail the conversation.

Thank you. I thought that was fairly obvious. The fact that the analogy was flawed was the least of the issues.

The fact that it capitalizes on people's death to make an erroneous point is the disgusting part and I can't believe it was defended.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 27, 2018, 02:34:03 PM
This thread has been discussed (https://www.reddit.com/r/SGU/comments/86pp0h/what_is_the_dirty_secret_of_the_sgu_discussed_on/) on the SGU subreddit. Compared to over here, they came down hard on the side of the SGU, with some harsh words written.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Enkidu Shamesh on March 27, 2018, 03:12:29 PM
This thread has been discussed (https://www.reddit.com/r/SGU/comments/86pp0h/what_is_the_dirty_secret_of_the_sgu_discussed_on/) on the SGU subreddit. Compared to over here, they came down hard on the side of the SGU, with some harsh words written.

Six people posted in that thread

moneys5 thinks Eternally Learning is an asshole

ActuallyNot agrees that the SGU doesn't talk about these issues and thinks it is a good thing

boss1000 appreciates the things the SGU does to address misogyny but is skeptical of what he calls their "Eternally Neutral" stance of not mentioning/taking sides of social issues (i.e. wishes they did more to address this issue)

dxk3355 makes the absurd claim that "the truth is an absolute defence" which any skeptic should know is laughable. I mean, I wish that were true, but if it were the SGU would't have had to hire a lawyer and ask for $$$

xeones quotes a post form Eternally Learning without comment

ItsTheMotion comments on that quote only to say "lots of internal contradictions in there . . ."

What, precisely is your point?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on March 27, 2018, 05:48:33 PM
This thread has been discussed (https://www.reddit.com/r/SGU/comments/86pp0h/what_is_the_dirty_secret_of_the_sgu_discussed_on/) on the SGU subreddit. Compared to over here, they came down hard on the side of the SGU, with some harsh words written.

Six people posted in that thread

moneys5 thinks Eternally Learning is an asshole

ActuallyNot agrees that the SGU doesn't talk about these issues and thinks it is a good thing

boss1000 appreciates the things the SGU does to address misogyny but is skeptical of what he calls their "Eternally Neutral" stance of not mentioning/taking sides of social issues (i.e. wishes they did more to address this issue)

dxk3355 makes the absurd claim that "the truth is an absolute defence" which any skeptic should know is laughable. I mean, I wish that were true, but if it were the SGU would't have had to hire a lawyer and ask for $$$

xeones quotes a post form Eternally Learning without comment

ItsTheMotion comments on that quote only to say "lots of internal contradictions in there . . ."

What, precisely is your point?

Eh, what?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Belgarath on March 27, 2018, 05:57:25 PM
"Nothing to be gained from making accusations" is an argument from ignorance. Either there's evidence to make a case, or there isn't.

Someone making accusations is a starting point, somewhere from which an investigation can be launched. But if it remains all accusations, and if it hasn't been through the courts (if it's a matter of crime rather than something that can be tested by anyone), then yes, we should continue to withhold judgement.

If people want to share sensitive information through direct messages rather than on a public forum, that's fine. If it's meant to hold some legal weight, well, either way if it's not public information, it can't have weight in a public discussion.

Almost ALL of these cases come down to a single accuser and a single attacker.  And the attack happens out of sight of any witnesses or video tape.  Either the attack happened, or the accuser is lying.  That is ALL the evidence you have in most of these cases.

What I say is that if you can show me a reason that some woman might make this stuff up and that there is a plausible reason that they might make it up, then I will believe the woman is lying.  If not, then I'm going to believe the woman.

Why do we always start talking about 'legal' in these cases?  It's not about whether or not something is legal.  If the person you hang around  with is an ass, you don't hang around with that person anymore, you don't need a court of law to declare them an ass, you just treat them like the ass that they are and move on.


Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 27, 2018, 07:49:49 PM
For what its worth, the use of the analogy to the recent school shooting was ill chosen.  It does immediately inject a load of emotion into the conversation that was all but guaranteed to derail the conversation.

I don't disagree with this assessment and for the record, I recognize I'm prone to being tone-deaf sometimes to the possible emotional reactions of others to things I say.  I just don't like being called a liar when I point out what my intentions were in bringing it up.  I was not trying to make an emotional appeal or smear the SGU unfairly by associating them with someone a lot of people are very angry at.  In fact, in the analogy as stated originally, I thought I addressed that concern by saying I couldn't bring myself to be mad at the deputy for not running in either.

At any rate, I think the point I was trying to make is clear enough, even if it was clumsy.  Anyone is free to be as mad at me as they like for making it in that way, but it does nothing to change what I was saying.  If anyone wants to start a thread on how I'm an insensitive jerk for going there then feel free, but for this thread let's just agree not to let it derail the conversation any further unless someone still thinks I'm being disingenuous about it. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Harry Black on March 27, 2018, 08:36:21 PM
I actually dont think it was a bad analogy. I think one has to really squint to see bad intent or callousness in it.

So for my part, I didnt think the SGU should be covering certain topics but was convinced otherwise by folks in this thread.
If promoting critical thinking is a goal then the state of the skeptical community is relevant rather than just gossip.
Also, with such disagreement over what issues are/arent skeptical issues or how best to approach them, I think their opinion is relevant.
On top of that there is Randazza.
On top of that, I'm pressing skip too much per episode.
On top of that I felt very weird when Steve spoke about their desire to 'build a community' in the recent patreon discussion (um...what are we?)
And finally, the issue alluded to earlier in the thread was not satisfactorily dealt with imo.

So while i fully support the SGU's goals and appreciate its MASSIVE influence on my life, and still am committed to this community and the people here (who are really important to me), I have decided to stop listening to the show until an effort is made to address the above issues.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 27, 2018, 09:12:56 PM
On top of that I felt very weird when Steve spoke about their desire to 'build a community' in the recent patreon discussion (um...what are we?)

Glad I'm not the only one who caught that. Especially the way they phrased by saying they were excited to "finally" have a community.  When Steve didn't post the next episode as a topic on the forum, I really thought he was intentionally dropping us and moving on to pretend we had nothing to do with the show.  He's since started posting them again, but still... Got some flashbacks to the pocket of dumb BS for a minute.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on March 27, 2018, 11:07:25 PM
Anyone who wants to know about the incedent(s) Eternally Learning is referring to, can pm me.

Thank you for the offer. I briefly considered taking you up on it. But then decided that I'm really not interested in hearsay. If there is evidence of scurrilous behavior, I imagine you or someone would make it public. If it's just hearsay allegations, I guess I'm really not interested.

Back in the 1960's and 1970's when the Vietnam war was raging and people (including myself) were protesting, there was a lot of paranoia and fear of CIA or FBI spies in the peace movement, and from time to time someone would accuse someone else of being a spy. It left me with a very low tolerance for unsupported accusations. A friend of mine once told me that before he and I first met, a friend of his had told him he thought I was a spy. I'm thankful that he laughed off the accusation and we later became good friends, and still are.

Ten or twenty years before that, people's lives were ruined by unsupported accusations that they were communists (even though there was never any law against being a communist or a member of the Communist Party and the Party was never illegal in the U.S.)

If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations. Unsupported accusations are hurtful at best, and tragic at worst. If there's actual evidence that one or more of the rogues have done something reprehensible, I want to know. But whispers and gossip are not the way to go and if it's not something you can post to an open forum then it never should have been hinted at here in the first place.

Don't make accusations you cannot back up with facts.

Jfc I didn't see this before I PM'd you, but this is a TERRIBLE reply. This is why people don't and won't come forward.



If there's evidence, bring it out. If there's no evidence, don't make accusations.


I'm guessing that you are against the Me Too movement then, and believe Bill Cosby was railroaded by a bunch of, uh, I'm not sure what it would take for 30+ women to independently accuse a man of drugging and raping them, but since they don't have any evidence I guess it didn't happen and poor Bill is the real victim, right?

Prior probability is a thing. Someone that comes to believe someone else is a secret communist is not the same as someone saying that they were sexually harassed/assaulted/raped. There is *nothing* to be gained by accusing a public figure of sexual harassment/assault/rape, unless you think someone is being paid a large sum of money to make the accusation - i.e. you have to invent a conspiracy. One of Roy Moor's accusers had her house set on fire FFS.

It's one thing to talk about the fallibility of personal testimony and memory, another to assume someone is lying. I can certainly imagine some crazy woo-woo with an axe to grind with organized skepticism making a false accusation; I find it harder to fathom why a skeptic would do so.  My guess is that the reaching out that was done was to see if there are any other victims as he said she said is less compelling than he said she said, she said, she said, she said, she said . . .

At the very least I see no problem in withholding judgment. Plenty of otherwise admirable people have turned out to be sex monsters, and plenty more, while short of that, have been found to have serious boundary issues. I cannot imagine a single public figure that I could definitively say could never have done anything like that. Bill Cosby turned out to be a serial rapist. Bill Fucking Cosby. So yeah, I find it plausible, and if more people turn up making accusations against the same person, people with no possible reason to lie, I will have no trouble believing it.

I was talking to Eternally Learning, who had posted, in effect, Somebody, but I won't say who, told me something, but I won't say what, about one of the rogues, but I won't say which one.

That was what I was talking about when I said don't make accusations without evidence. People absolutely should come forward when they are abused. I completely support the Me Too movement. I oppose someone saying "I heard something bad about so-and-so but I won't tell you what it was or where I heard it."

I do not think it's appropriate for someone who I do not know to PM me with an accusation against someone I do not know, and who I have no power to correct or discipline. What I said was that the person who has been abused should either make the accusation publicly, where the accused could answer, or go to the people involved or to an authority who is empowered to take appropriate measures. What good is served by privately telling someone who is entirely outside of the loop and knows none of the people involved?

I received an unsolicited PM and replied to it and then was excoriated for sending an unsolicited reply to an unsolicited PM. I have no ability to investigate the accusation or to do anything about it. The accusation should be made in a venue where there are people who can corroborate or investigate. The act alleged is absolutely unacceptable and should be investigated and measures taken. As a mere poster on this board, I am the wrong person to make the accusation to.

I repeat: When I said don't make accusations without evidence, I was not speaking to the victim of the action. I was speaking to Eternally Learning, who posted:

Quote
I reached my breaking point however, when someone confided something in me (which I won't discuss or even allude to here so please don't ask and please don't hypothesise amongst yourselves either) that I just couldn't overlook.

In my opinion, that post was inappropriate, and that is all I was referring to. Victims of abuse should always come forward and the authorities should take such accusations seriously and should investigate and take appropriate action. Abuse is unacceptable and should be dealt with.

You've left me very confused.  I never made an accusation of any sort on the topic and only said I learned of something I couldn't ignore.  I realize that it was maybe a mistake to phrase it that way as it's only human nature to jump to the worst conclusions and that's not what I wanted to happen, but regardless I never said anything about what I'd learned nor implied that it had direct implications on a Rogue.  Moving on, 6EQUJ5 never so much as implied that what they'd confided in me was hearsay.  So either you are implying that direct accusations without evidence are hearsay and should thus be ignored, or you are implying that what I said in the OP was hearsay when I didn't actually make an accusation; neither of which make any kind of sense to me given what else you've said.  Maybe if I'd actually said that I'd heard someone did something really bad but I won't say what or who you'd have a point, but I didn't.  As far as everyone knew from the OP, someone could have simply told me that Steve personally called the forum a cesspool of ignorance and that he hated us with a passion, but they were good friends with him and didn't want it getting out that they'd told someone else.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: amysrevenge on March 29, 2018, 02:08:49 PM
My first thought when hearing about the patreon-only forum/chat/whatever was "not with a 10 foot pole haha".  They'll never manage to engage personally with folks for any length of time - have you been to the internet?  It's full of assholes.  Especially assholes who have paid good money and feel entitled to personal access.  They set out to personally engage with people here on this forum, and that didn't last long...
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on March 29, 2018, 04:58:44 PM
Almost ALL of these cases come down to a single accuser and a single attacker.  And the attack happens out of sight of any witnesses or video tape.  Either the attack happened, or the accuser is lying.  That is ALL the evidence you have in most of these cases.

Those aren't the only options. Different people can perceive events differently, and memories can change over time. Which along with physical evidence deteriorating over time, is why it's important to investigate as soon as possible.

An individual doesn't either lie or describe events with 100% objective accuracy.

Nor is evidence limited to video or eyewitnesses. It's possible to use other means to prove that someone's been at a location, or has been in physical contact with someone, especially as we get better at studying bacteria and such. Which then can be corroborated with statements, the people involved can be questioned about it further, etc.

Quote
What I say is that if you can show me a reason that some woman might make this stuff up and that there is a plausible reason that they might make it up, then I will believe the woman is lying.  If not, then I'm going to believe the woman.

Why do we always start talking about 'legal' in these cases?  It's not about whether or not something is legal.  If the person you hang around  with is an ass, you don't hang around with that person anymore, you don't need a court of law to declare them an ass, you just treat them like the ass that they are and move on.

Sure, what people choose to do on a personal level doesn't have to follow some official standard.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on March 29, 2018, 08:59:53 PM
I just wanted to say thank you to Eternally Learning and Harry Black for sharing your thoughts here. Discussing these important issues is critical to the health and survival of this community. It makes me feel much better to know that I am not alone in being very concerned about these issues. I appreciate you bringing this stuff up, even if a lot of folks react defensively.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on March 30, 2018, 05:02:05 PM
I've tested coming out with it by telling a few people, and the responses have been overall supportive with only a few of the harsh replies/criticisms that have made me (and many others in similar situations) not want to be totally open about it. I still don't know if I want to deal with having someone publish some big blog post on my behalf about it in a way that is more in-your-face public... I'm still testing the waters and feeling unsure, but I'll at least say openly here that EL was referring to the fact that I told him that Evan groped me on three different occasions, once...ironically, in an elevator. I can't promise I'll answer questions about it, and I'm not interested in being questioned about every action I took since it happened, and I'm certainly not interested in having to prove it to anyone who doesn't feel like believing me. I AM interested in hearing from anyone else who may have had this experience.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on April 01, 2018, 09:49:45 AM
So far I haven't talked about your specific case, and it doesn't sound like you're inviting me (some anonymous member of the public) to do that now.

But as someone who has read on the sguforums that Evan is a serial groper, I wouldn't like for the matter to be left at that.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on April 02, 2018, 09:05:48 AM
So far I haven't talked about your specific case, and it doesn't sound like you're inviting me (some anonymous member of the public) to do that now.

But as someone who has read on the sguforums that Evan is a serial groper, I wouldn't like for the matter to be left at that.

You can talk about it if you want, I just don't want to be criticized for how I should be handling it, or  hear speculation about how I've somehow mishandled it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on April 09, 2018, 07:29:51 AM
You can talk about it if you want, I just don't want to be criticized for how I should be handling it, or  hear speculation about how I've somehow mishandled it.

Another week of it not being mentioned, I'm not sure where to go with this.

You say you've talked with them directly, but were disappointed by their response. If you would like to elaborate on that, please do. Beyond that, I'm guessing that some of the other people you've talked with it about have more relevant connections than me.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: SnarlPatrick on April 09, 2018, 10:02:01 AM
Perry Dying.... :(
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on April 09, 2018, 01:30:09 PM
I thought it way Jay's ex. But in any case, I can't hold it against any podcast producer that they don't use their ex as intro voice.
Who would ever know? I think that's petty.
Of all the stuff that available to question or criticize regarding how various rogues may treat and/or talk about various women, deciding you don't want to hear your ex's voice every time you do your podcast is far from making it to even the bottom of the list. (It would also not surprise me in the least if his ex-wife herself didn't want her voice to be associated with the SGU any longer.)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: st3class on April 09, 2018, 01:42:46 PM
Two weeks ago, SGU came up in my podcast rotation during my run. After reading what 6EQUJ5 posted earlier in the week, that was in the back of my mind, and every time Evan opened his mouth, those accusations were the only thing I could think about. I couldn't focus on the content, so reluctantly, I skipped the ep and went to the next pod in my queue.

I later realized that I didn't miss listening. I've got plenty of other podcasts to listen to, and removing this one from the rotation didn't faze me at all. It makes me sad, since the SGU was my second ever podcast, but I don't think I can listen until I hear some kind of response from the Rogues.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on April 09, 2018, 01:55:10 PM
I thought it way Jay's ex. But in any case, I can't hold it against any podcast producer that they don't use their ex as intro voice.
Who would ever know? I think that's petty.
Of all the stuff that available to question or criticize regarding how various rogues may treat and/or talk about various women, deciding you don't want to hear your ex's voice every time you do your podcast is far from making it to even the bottom of the list. (It would also not surprise me in the least if his ex-wife herself didn't want her voice to be associated with the SGU any longer.)
She may have objected to continued usage of her voice but that was never mentioned. What was mentioned was why her voice was removed. And on separate occasion(s) her mental health status was pejoratively called into question by the ex husband/rogue. I haven't stopped listening and I didn't say I would stop listening;I said I think that that rogue's public behavior is rubbish.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on April 09, 2018, 02:05:16 PM
(click to show/hide)
She may have objected to continued usage of her voice but that was never mentioned. What was mentioned was why her voice was removed. And on separate occasion(s) her mental health status was pejoratively called into question by the ex husband/rogue. I haven't stopped listening and I didn't say I would stop listening;I said I think that that rogue's public behavior is rubbish.
I agree with you regarding the public disparagement of his ex-wife but I think removing her voice from the podcast intro is perfectly reasonable.  As noted, she may have wanted it done and if I were the rogue in question, I'd hardly want the weekly reminder of my failed relationship. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on April 09, 2018, 02:34:52 PM
She may have objected to continued usage of her voice but that was never mentioned. What was mentioned was why her voice was removed. And on separate occasion(s) her mental health status was pejoratively called into question by the ex husband/rogue. I haven't stopped listening and I didn't say I would stop listening;I said I think that that rogue's public behavior is rubbish.
I agree with you regarding the public disparagement of his ex-wife but I think removing her voice from the podcast intro is perfectly reasonable.  As noted, she may have wanted it done and if I were the rogue in question, I'd hardly want the weekly reminder of my failed relationship.
That's fine but that's where we differ. I see ex's that get along and those that don't and prefer the former. He went out of his way to wear a chip on his shoulder in the podcast. As for her voice, if she objected and he wanted to say anything then he could have said that she asked that her voice be removed. Or just removed it without comment. Or do what he did without the lingering shitty attitude.

Being a member of a group that was toying with the idea of calling themselves "brights" I guess I hold skeptics to a different standard. Maybe that's my error. I don't expect him to go full Cher/Sonny eulogy for the relationship but not being a dick towards her seems an easy to attain minimal standard of conduct. Many an example of entertainers that get divorced yet still work together in public. The rogues are entertainers.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on April 09, 2018, 02:52:59 PM
There's one type of entertainer that can build a career out of talking shit about their partners and exes; comedians.

She may have objected to continued usage of her voice but that was never mentioned. What was mentioned was why her voice was removed. And on separate occasion(s) her mental health status was pejoratively called into question by the ex husband/rogue. I haven't stopped listening and I didn't say I would stop listening;I said I think that that rogue's public behavior is rubbish.

I guess that's quite a long time ago now, because I don't remember that in particular. I remember the start of it, where Steve basically tried to leave it at "we're changing it because that was his ex wife, enough said". Jay skipped out on some podcasts because of the divorce. And then he was randomly venting on the show, which maybe should've been edited out, but it's sort of understandable to have that attitude after a bad breakup.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on April 09, 2018, 04:20:23 PM
Devout Catalyst, do you personally know these people about whom you're talking?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on April 09, 2018, 04:22:36 PM
Devout Catalyst, do you personally know these people about whom you're talking?
Only to the extent that they made this public on a show about science.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Tassie Dave on April 09, 2018, 04:45:06 PM
Wasn't the intro changed because it sounded so obviously fake British?

So an actual Brit offered to replace it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on April 09, 2018, 04:49:42 PM
Wasn't the intro changed because it sounded so obviously fake British?

So an actual Brit offered to replace it.

That was the voice in between.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on April 09, 2018, 05:17:35 PM
Devout Catalyst, do you personally know these people about whom you're talking?

Only to the extent that they made this public on a show about science.

So all the gossip about Jay's relationship with his ex and how that factored into their decision to re-do the intro, that was all just presumption on your part? And you felt justified in voicing your opinion anyway? 


Wasn't the intro changed because it sounded so obviously fake British?

So an actual Brit offered to replace it.

That was my takeaway from the whole discussion.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Harry Black on April 09, 2018, 05:19:33 PM
Devout Catalyst, do you personally know these people about whom you're talking?

Only to the extent that they made this public on a show about science.

So all the gossip about Jay's relationship with his ex and how that factored into their decision to re-do the intro, that was all just presumption on your part?
I do remember them saying that it sucked for Jay to have to hear her voice.
I certainly dont like seeing reminders of one or two of my exes.
And its not because Im petty (I am, but thats separate) its because it hurts.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on April 09, 2018, 05:22:22 PM
Devout Catalyst, do you personally know these people about whom you're talking?

Only to the extent that they made this public on a show about science.

So all the gossip about Jay's relationship with his ex and how that factored into their decision to re-do the intro, that was all just presumption on your part?
I do remember them saying that it sucked for Jay to have to hear her voice.
I certainly dont like seeing reminders of one or two of my exes.
And its not because Im petty (I am, but thats separate) its because it hurts.

Perfectly understandable, and not necessarily a bad thing either.

This digging for dirt on people's past relationships for the sake of gossip makes one sound like an old busybody. And to post this kind of stuff on the SGU's own discussion forums is rather obnoxious, in my opinion.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on April 09, 2018, 06:13:16 PM
I really don't care that much if Jay and his family really don't like his ex and it wouldn't bother me to find them talking smavk about her. Relationships can be messy, feelings can get hurt, and sometimes people can be legitimately horrible to each other. We have no idea how she treated him and thus have no way of knowing if their response is reasonable.

My only quibble is if they use the show to badmouth her, but it's just something I would find distasteful, not sexist or anything. Certainly, it's not anything I'd stop listening over unless it was brought up over and over again.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on April 09, 2018, 06:48:13 PM
She may have objected to continued usage of her voice but that was never mentioned. What was mentioned was why her voice was removed. And on separate occasion(s) her mental health status was pejoratively called into question by the ex husband/rogue. I haven't stopped listening and I didn't say I would stop listening;I said I think that that rogue's public behavior is rubbish.
I agree with you regarding the public disparagement of his ex-wife but I think removing her voice from the podcast intro is perfectly reasonable.  As noted, she may have wanted it done and if I were the rogue in question, I'd hardly want the weekly reminder of my failed relationship.
That's fine but that's where we differ. I see ex's that get along and those that don't and prefer the former. He went out of his way to wear a chip on his shoulder in the podcast. As for her voice, if she objected and he wanted to say anything then he could have said that she asked that her voice be removed. Or just removed it without comment. Or do what he did without the lingering shitty attitude.

Being a member of a group that was toying with the idea of calling themselves "brights" I guess I hold skeptics to a different standard. Maybe that's my error. I don't expect him to go full Cher/Sonny eulogy for the relationship but not being a dick towards her seems an easy to attain minimal standard of conduct. Many an example of entertainers that get divorced yet still work together in public. The rogues are entertainers.
You'll note that I didn't say anything about his being a dick about her. I only commented on removing her voice.

Sure, he may also have been a dick about it and that may rise to the level of objectionable, but the fact of removing her voice in itself is not. Even times I've parted with someone on good terms (in relationships far less serious than marriage), I probably wouldn't have wanted that reminder of their voice every single week thereafter.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on April 09, 2018, 08:13:12 PM
Devout Catalyst, do you personally know these people about whom you're talking?
Only to the extent that they made this public on a show about science.
So all the gossip about Jay's relationship with his ex and how that factored into their decision to re-do the intro, that was all just presumption on your part? And you felt justified in voicing your opinion anyway? 
The re-do of the intro is of no valid concern yet I enquired about it anyway and made the presumption you note. I appreciate your reply.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Sawyer on April 10, 2018, 12:40:15 AM
Wasn't the intro changed because it sounded so obviously fake British?

So an actual Brit offered to replace it.

That was the voice in between.

Wait, when was this?  I remember no one between Jay's wife and Iszi.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: SnarlPatrick on April 10, 2018, 03:31:14 AM
So I'm in a bit of a different position... as I haven't listened for years... it is the forum that drew me in. I lost most of my interest in the show, as I said, after Perry died, and listened to a few of the Rebecca years with growing aggravation. I actually don't even know the current roster of the show. I keep meaning to listen to a recent episode... I think I will soon. I have no idea what was alleged against Evan.

From my point of view, and I don't mean this negatively, I can't imagine being so terribly interested in the non-content related aspects of the Novella family, nice as they are and appreciating fully all the work that went and goes into creating the show... but it's always been the forum I truly valued.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on April 10, 2018, 03:41:41 AM
Wait, when was this?  I remember no one between Jay's wife and Iszi.

#291-#300 have a different voice.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Beleth on April 10, 2018, 11:28:26 AM
(http://www.vliegendeolifant.nl/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/great-minds-little-minds-300x164.jpg)

When I want to hear about what awful things the people in the skeptical community have done, I check Twitter.

When I want to hear about skeptical ideas and things, I listen to SGU.

I am really happy that they have remained as neutral as they have so far. Bravo to them for remaining on the high ground.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Beleth on April 11, 2018, 10:31:46 AM
Okay, so clearly when I wrote the above post I wasn't aware of 6EQUJ5's groping story a few pages ago. We've discussed it amongst ourselves and we're cool.

And that's all I'm going to say about it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on July 14, 2018, 12:32:35 PM
You know what?  I think I am done with the show, sad to say.  I already stopped donating.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on July 14, 2018, 12:37:42 PM
You know what?  I think I am done with the show, sad to say.  I already stopped donating.

The sad part is, that with the exception of dealing with Evan, it wouldn't take much to win me back over. Ignoring all this is almost entirely what's turned me off; it's precisely the opposite of what they've been advocating people do for all these years
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on July 14, 2018, 01:00:33 PM
I think I’m going to write to them.  I’m undecided about whether I should write to all of them as a group, or to Steve only.  Suggestions?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Desert Fox on July 14, 2018, 01:07:37 PM
I think I’m going to write to them.  I’m undecided about whether I should write to all of them as a group, or to Steve only.  Suggestions?

Steve I think. . . . .Many times easier with a one on one.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on July 14, 2018, 01:43:21 PM
You know what?  I think I am done with the show, sad to say.  I already stopped donating.
What happened now? (I stopped listening a while ago, so I'm not up on the latest news.)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: wastrel on July 31, 2018, 05:50:33 PM
I think I’m going to write to them.  I’m undecided about whether I should write to all of them as a group, or to Steve only.  Suggestions?

I'm guessing no, but did anything come of this?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on July 31, 2018, 07:38:33 PM
I think I’m going to write to them.  I’m undecided about whether I should write to all of them as a group, or to Steve only.  Suggestions?

I'm guessing no, but did anything come of this?

I decided to wait until after NECSS because my previous experience is that they are unlikely to respond anything sent right before or during it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 01, 2018, 07:50:16 AM
So a question, is the patrion community different then the SGU Web site community? I'm wondering are they going to move everything over to patrion? Hoping someone can clear this up. I don't remember theme talking about this, just that they are on patrion.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on August 01, 2018, 03:46:36 PM
So a question, is the patrion community different then the SGU Web site community? I'm wondering are they going to move everything over to patrion? Hoping someone can clear this up. I don't remember theme talking about this, just that they are on patrion.

I think this is just a forum that they host, and Steve posts every time a new episode is out. In the earlier episodes you can hear them encouraging people to sign up, but these days I don't think htey care very much about this forum. There isn't much here to move to Patreon I think, but I think they will focus on the Patreon rather than the forum.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on August 01, 2018, 04:50:38 PM
When they introduced Patreon they basically said you can keep your old membership, but presented Patreon as something that allowed them to do more with the membership.

And then talked about their new community as if they never had a community before.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 01, 2018, 05:40:27 PM
When they introduced Patreon they basically said you can keep your old membership, but presented Patreon as something that allowed them to do more with the membership.

And then talked about their new community as if they never had a community before.

Yup. Kinda pissed me off TBH. Especially when the mods from this forum were interviewed on an episode years ago.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 01, 2018, 07:17:30 PM
When they introduced Patreon they basically said you can keep your old membership, but presented Patreon as something that allowed them to do more with the membership.

And then talked about their new community as if they never had a community before.

Yup. Kinda pissed me off TBH. Especially when the mods from this forum were interviewed on an episode years ago.

Let's face it the rogues are just not that into us any more. When we all first met there was fire in our eyes. Now not so much. Maybe a trial separation is in order.  ;)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on August 02, 2018, 11:19:56 AM
When they introduced Patreon they basically said you can keep your old membership, but presented Patreon as something that allowed them to do more with the membership.

And then talked about their new community as if they never had a community before.

Yup. Kinda pissed me off TBH. Especially when the mods from this forum were interviewed on an episode years ago.

It was almost 8 years ago (https://www.theskepticsguide.org/podcast/sgu/276), so quite a long time. And is any of these people still active here?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Billzbub on August 02, 2018, 11:37:58 AM
If Trump can save the coal miners, maybe we can get him to save these forums, too.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Billzbub on August 02, 2018, 11:48:42 AM
I've tested coming out with it by telling a few people, and the responses have been overall supportive with only a few of the harsh replies/criticisms that have made me (and many others in similar situations) not want to be totally open about it. I still don't know if I want to deal with having someone publish some big blog post on my behalf about it in a way that is more in-your-face public... I'm still testing the waters and feeling unsure, but I'll at least say openly here that EL was referring to the fact that I told him that Evan groped me on three different occasions, once...ironically, in an elevator. I can't promise I'll answer questions about it, and I'm not interested in being questioned about every action I took since it happened, and I'm certainly not interested in having to prove it to anyone who doesn't feel like believing me. I AM interested in hearing from anyone else who may have had this experience.

It has been a while since this post, and I was waiting to see what happened regarding it.  As far as I can tell, nothing has happened.  Does anyone have any info on whether the SGU cast knows about this?  I don't want to be one of those guys that knows about this and just keeps on listening to the podcast, but I also don't want to stop listening.  What should we all do?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ron Obvious on August 02, 2018, 01:13:56 PM
What should we all do?

Nothing, of course. It's nothing whatsoever to do with the show or with us, and most of us are not in any kind of position to judge what might have happened. Warn women going to conventions with him if you're worried about it.

I don't expect this will be a popular opinion 'round these parts.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 02, 2018, 01:24:43 PM
When they introduced Patreon they basically said you can keep your old membership, but presented Patreon as something that allowed them to do more with the membership.

And then talked about their new community as if they never had a community before.

Yup. Kinda pissed me off TBH. Especially when the mods from this forum were interviewed on an episode years ago.

It was almost 8 years ago (https://www.theskepticsguide.org/podcast/sgu/276), so quite a long time. And is any of these people still active here?

My point was just that it was hardly like they know nothing of this place and have never mentioned it on the show. For a while they were pushing for their listeners to join in fact.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on August 02, 2018, 03:12:38 PM
What should we all do?

Nothing, of course. It's nothing whatsoever to do with the show or with us, and most of us are not in any kind of position to judge what might have happened. Warn women going to conventions with him if you're worried about it.

I don't expect this will be a popular opinion 'round these parts.
It's got nothing to do with the show that one of the people on the show is a bit of a sexual predator?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ron Obvious on August 02, 2018, 03:26:32 PM
It's got nothing to do with the show that one of the people on it is alleged to be a bit of a sexual predator at conventions, no.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: wastrel on August 02, 2018, 03:55:38 PM
Just a bit though.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on August 02, 2018, 03:59:30 PM
It's got nothing to do with the show that one of the people on it is alleged to be a bit of a sexual predator at conventions, no.

Ron "a bit of a sexual predator" Obvious
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 02, 2018, 04:00:35 PM
It's got nothing to do with the show that one of the people on it is alleged to be a bit of a sexual predator at conventions, no.

Even ignoring your opinion on the validity of her accusations, I have no idea how you can say that the allegations of sexual assault on a founding member of the show is of no concern of the show's unless you are completely dismissing her allegations.  If that's the case then you're not being skeptical, you're being an asshole.  A skeptic would at least withhold judgement.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 02, 2018, 05:41:04 PM
When they introduced Patreon they basically said you can keep your old membership, but presented Patreon as something that allowed them to do more with the membership.

And then talked about their new community as if they never had a community before.

Yup. Kinda pissed me off TBH. Especially when the mods from this forum were interviewed on an episode years ago.

It was almost 8 years ago (https://www.theskepticsguide.org/podcast/sgu/276), so quite a long time. And is any of these people still active here?

My point was just that it was hardly like they know nothing of this place and have never mentioned it on the show. For a while they were pushing for their listeners to join in fact.

It would be nice if they at least mentioned the boards once in awhile. I know they probably would pull questions from subscribers, but it would be nice to have a bit of a back and forth. I know the show is a big time drag on the hosts. Maybe there is just not enough time to interact.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: amysrevenge on August 02, 2018, 05:43:44 PM
Haven't listened in a while - how is the engaging with Paying Members going over on Patreon?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 02, 2018, 05:46:02 PM
Haven't listened in a while - how is the engaging with Paying Members going over on Patreon?

I don't know I am really wondering why they have 2 different subscription sites. Usually when you change to a different pay site you merge the 2 together.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 02, 2018, 06:39:41 PM
For one thing, they've promoted a subscriber-only Discord channel on which the Rogues regularly text and voice chat with members.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: arthwollipot on August 02, 2018, 06:40:01 PM
Haven't listened in a while - how is the engaging with Paying Members going over on Patreon?

It's been a while since I logged on to Discord - because of timezones there's usually not very many people active there when I have the opportunity to be there. But Jay especially is regularly active there and takes part in discussions. I think I've seen Steve post once or twice, but the Discord really seems to be Jay's jam.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 02, 2018, 06:43:53 PM
It would be nice if they at least mentioned the boards once in awhile. I know they probably would pull questions from subscribers, but it would be nice to have a bit of a back and forth. I know the show is a big time drag on the hosts. Maybe there is just not enough time to interact.

Meh.  I know things change and that they were never exactly active here in the first place.  I don't need their affections or support, I just don't like the idea of them appearing to deny their own history and pretending like we don't exist.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ron Obvious on August 02, 2018, 07:11:30 PM
It's got nothing to do with the show that one of the people on it is alleged to be a bit of a sexual predator at conventions, no.

Ron "a bit of a sexual predator" Obvious

That was the phrase used by the person (gmalivuk) I was responding to, yeah, and you might want to be more careful throwing casual accusations around too. Not everybody has my sense of humour.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ron Obvious on August 02, 2018, 07:20:30 PM
A skeptic would at least withhold judgement.

Which is of course exactly what I'm doing. I thought that was obvious by the fact that I used the "alleged" qualifier for the accusations, and not, say, "baseless" or "proven".
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 02, 2018, 07:30:18 PM
A skeptic would at least withhold judgement.

Which is of course exactly what I'm doing. I thought that was obvious by the fact that I used the "alleged" qualifier for the accusations, and not, say, "baseless" or "proven".

Did you read the rest of my post?  I said either an allegation should be of concern to the show, or you are completely dismissing the allegations.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ron Obvious on August 02, 2018, 07:32:37 PM
A skeptic would at least withhold judgement.

Which is of course exactly what I'm doing. I thought that was obvious by the fact that I used the "alleged" qualifier for the accusations, and not, say, "baseless" or "proven".

Did you read the rest of my post?  I said either an allegation should be of concern to the show, or you are completely dismissing the allegations.

That's a false dichotomy. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 02, 2018, 07:33:28 PM
Who's alleged to be a sexual predator at conventions?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 02, 2018, 08:50:42 PM
A skeptic would at least withhold judgement.

Which is of course exactly what I'm doing. I thought that was obvious by the fact that I used the "alleged" qualifier for the accusations, and not, say, "baseless" or "proven".

Did you read the rest of my post?  I said either an allegation should be of concern to the show, or you are completely dismissing the allegations.

That's a false dichotomy.

I'm open for an alternative view if you'd care to provide one.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on August 02, 2018, 10:41:09 PM
It's got nothing to do with the show that one of the people on it is alleged to be a bit of a sexual predator at conventions, no.

Ron "a bit of a sexual predator" Obvious

That was the phrase used by the person (gmalivuk) I was responding to, yeah, and you might want to be more careful throwing casual accusations around too. Not everybody has my sense of humour.

Stop censoring me.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on August 06, 2018, 05:02:03 PM
I think I’m going to write to them.  I’m undecided about whether I should write to all of them as a group, or to Steve only.  Suggestions?

I'm guessing no, but did anything come of this?

I would also like to know, now that NECSS is past quite a bit.

For me, the SGU has been a very positive influence on my life. The knowledge gained from the show over the years is not insignificant. And it has been a window into "There are others who think like I do". And I truly wish that I had come across the show at an earlier point in my life. To me the SGU is what The Demon-Haunted World is to many (older?) skeptics.

I don't want to stop listening. But I don't want to be indifferent to the very serious allegations either.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: God Bomb on August 06, 2018, 08:33:26 PM
I cant find anything about these allegations, can someone please aware me?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PatrickG on August 06, 2018, 09:33:20 PM
I’ve been listening faithfully to the SGU since 2006, never missing an episode. The SGU is consistent, it’s produced just right: not over-produced with radiolab-style sound effects, not underproduced with poor audio. The rogues have integrity, are interesting and talk about stuff that matter.

The slow move towards commercialism of the SGU, however, worries me. The relatable amateur status of a few people doing this as a hobby cheerfully colors the show. As a commercial show it loses its charm.

First there are the cringeworthy ads read by the team. A core value of skepticism is brutal honesty, while the spin of ads is a fundamentally dishonest rosy picture. It would be much better to use a commercially produced audio-ad. Ok, I can live with the ads given that they indeed managed to minimize the damage somewhat.

The recent monetization move with Patreon is more worrisome. Steve mentioned that they want to hire Jay full time. Is that a good thing? Not in my book. If the salary of a member depends on the money flowing in from the SGU business we can expect more sales pitches for membership, endless plugs for their book, more books, interviews that are actually book plugs, plugs for live performances with exclusive entrance fees, etc. etc.

This week’s SGU episode contained much of the above, and it makes me hit the skip button much more often than before.

The SGU is slowly losing me. Part of it is the competition from many other good podcasts, part is the over-familiarity. But the biggest drop in the bucket is the decline of the amateur charm.

Why not stick to the podcast, where an old PC with a microphone is all that is needed?

Most previous escapades beyond podcasting were no success. Remember http://www.skeptologists.com , https://www.theskepticsguide.org/occ
the skeptical caveman?  I attended to the first live ‘skeptical extravaganzas’, and came out rather disappointed.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 06, 2018, 10:35:45 PM
The commercialization is a big disappointment. It really makes me cringe whenever Dr. Novella announces the switch away from serious skepticism advocacy, and then the rest of the "Rogues" put on the phony enthusiasm and gush about frozen steaks or polyfoam mattresses. I agree, even pre-recorded commercials would be preferable to that.

Soliciting memberships for hiring a member of the cast as a full-time employee seems to be a growing trend in podcasting. I know of at least three podcasts that are using that as a marketing pitch for Patreon memberships. What's the audience appeal of this pitch? Are we supposed consider this like helping an old friend get a leg up in the industry?

On one hand, I get that audio production can be a tremendous amount of work, and producing just a couple hours of content per week can balloon into a full-time job. Juggling a regular work career plus a 40-hour-a-week "hobby" may be too much to ask for many podcasters, especially if they're trying to support a family. So it becomes a question of viability. Of course the other cast members might be cajoled into sharing editing duties, but everyone's not cut out for audio engineering work and too many fingers on the sliders can lead to mistakes and stylistic inconsistencies in production.

But what kind of salary is the cast member expecting to make as a podcast editor? Working in IT or software development can be tedious and nerve-wracking, but it tends to pay extremely well compared to creative work. Junior audio engineers (in music, radio, and commercials) typically make about half of what an experienced IT professional earns. So are the SGU looking to pay one of their cast an IT-pro's salary for doing audio editing work? If they can swing it, more power to them. Otherwise it would seem more economical to just hire a pro sound engineer.

I'm not pretending to know anything about the SGU's financials, and it doesn't make me want to stop listening or anything. Since PatrickG brought it up, I'm just taking the opportunity to spitball about this trend of podcasters soliciting donations so they can hire a cast member as a full-time employee.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on August 06, 2018, 10:45:35 PM
A number of podcasts have dropped their RSS feed and once that happens I generally stop listening.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 07, 2018, 12:10:54 AM
I was under the impression that Steve has always been the one editing the podcasts and still is.  What would Jay be doing?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: arthwollipot on August 07, 2018, 12:24:03 AM
I was under the impression that Steve has always been the one editing the podcasts and still is.  What would Jay be doing?

Handling most of the technology and equipment, as far as I know.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on August 07, 2018, 12:44:23 AM
I was under the impression that Steve has always been the one editing the podcasts and still is.  What would Jay be doing?

Handling most of the technology and equipment, as far as I know.

That's a full time job?  I mean, most people who quit their jobs to do podcasts that I'm aware of, tend to be the ones already doing most of the work.  When they are free to focus on the podcast to the exclusion of an outside job, they are able to put more content out, interact more with listeners, and come up with new ideas and projects that would otherwise be too time-consuming.  Why would I care that Jay can now focus on maintaining some servers and a few websites full time?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: arthwollipot on August 07, 2018, 01:07:50 AM
That's a full time job?

It certainly can be, yes, espeically since they have not only static and mobile audio recording equipment but video equipment as well. I would expect that it will also roll in social media management and from what was said on this week's episode, event organisation as well.

Furthermore, having someone employed in a full-time capacity means that they will be able to branch out into new projects that they didn't have time for before.

But regardless, the job is for as many hours per week and for as much remuneration per week as Jay and Steve decide it's going to be. It's not like there's an award wage.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on August 07, 2018, 03:00:42 AM
My impression is that Jay is already doing most of the grunt work besides the weekly recording and editing.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 07, 2018, 03:34:43 AM
Why not stick to the podcast, where an old PC with a microphone is all that is needed?

Good Sound quality on a podcast is a key requirement for me. Next to content it is the most important.

There's nothing worse (in podcasts) than listening to a podcast recorded on shitty mikes. Most computers have shitty inbuilt mikes.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: kvuo75 on August 07, 2018, 06:01:54 AM
The commercialization is a big disappointment.

same here.

the podcast is the same thing they've always done. I don't see a difference in quality. why does it need commercials and full time employees all of a sudden?

everything was all good for 10 years, hey, lets just do it out of our pocket, maybe take donations? hey a service to the community...  for the love of science and truth..

now: lets run lame commericals and hire full time employees and not even improve the final product..



something else that's been bugging me.. the skeptical content seems to be lacking.. the show seems to have become pretty much 90% general science/technology news. can't remember the last time I heard a dumb email/name that logical fallacy, pseudosciences? conspiracy theories? multi level marketing?, etc???  plenty of segments on space exploration, materials science and solar energy though.. which are cool. but "skeptic" topics? in other words.. i would prefer more about how to be a skeptic and less science headlines.



Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on August 07, 2018, 06:52:56 AM
All good podcasts seem to start out as hobbies, or indirectly funded or promotional side projects, and then the ads start piling up. Or maybe podcasts just didn't use to be that popular before, and no one wanted to advertise on them.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 07, 2018, 07:25:47 AM
All good podcasts seem to start out as hobbies, or indirectly funded or promotional side projects, and then the ads start piling up. Or maybe podcasts just didn't use to be that popular before, and no one wanted to advertise on them.
I would say both. Advertiser's are just coming around to podcast as an advertising vehicle. I think they were waiting to see if it got any traction. Also the ability to fast forward through the commercials is an issue.
Yes podcasts start out as hobbies. Then they get more popular and cost start to go up of time and money. I can see why they would want to recoup their cost.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on August 07, 2018, 07:41:55 AM
Maybe going off-topic, but is the ability to skip ads really that much of a disadvantage? I find that the more spread out and unpredictable ads are, the more annoying they are. A little "sponsored by" at the start or end with a disinterested description works a lot better for me. I know they help pay for the content, I know they exist and can look them up, but they're not constantly interrupting the content episode after episode.

In newspapers ads used to be confined to their own pages, and you could spend as much time as you wanted on them. Or separate magazines, although that's what I'd call going way overboard with the ads, when it creates more trash than the primary content.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: seamas on August 07, 2018, 01:14:17 PM
I generally don't have any issues with their ad placements. Keeping the show running and helping to pay expenses never bothered me.
I wouldn't call it "commercialization" until they went full for-profit and as far as I can tell they aren't anywhere close to doing that.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: God Bomb on August 07, 2018, 01:35:04 PM
To anyone complaining about commercialization without noticeable improvements, lets not forget the huge cost of the lawsuit Steve went through, and the risks of further lawsuits for bringing everyone his free blog and podcast. 

I do think they should just do away with ads and rely solely on donations though.  I do not think there is a legitimate case to complain about having a patreon page IF there were no ads on the show.  Accepting donations is perfectly fine, whereas ads will always compromise credibility.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Skepmic on August 07, 2018, 01:37:22 PM
The commercialization is a big disappointment. It really makes me cringe whenever Dr. Novella announces the switch away from serious skepticism advocacy, and then the rest of the "Rogues" put on the phony enthusiasm and gush about frozen steaks or polyfoam mattresses. I agree, even pre-recorded commercials would be preferable to that.

Ads using the host(s) are insidious. They directly dent the credibility of the person talking. And not for a whole lot of cash either. Especially on a show that prides itself on skepticism this is a big problem. Pre-recorded ads by a third-party are much less problematic because the distinction is immediately clear. That's why Sam Harris relies fully on contributions from listeners for his podcast IIRC. The SGU adopting the same model would be great. Of course you then get the problem that people paying have an outsize influence on how or what is being talked about.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on August 07, 2018, 01:43:53 PM
Of course you then get the problem that people paying have an outsize influence on how or what is being talked about.

That's how it works by design now, since you get chat access and voting privileges depending on how much you pay.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Harry Black on August 07, 2018, 04:33:06 PM
I hate capitalism.
But while its a reality, I wont criticise any content creators for trying exist in it and make a living from the thing they are most passionate about.

I will criticise them for lots of other shit though.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Skepmic on August 08, 2018, 08:30:31 AM
Of course you then get the problem that people paying have an outsize influence on how or what is being talked about.

That's how it works by design now, since you get chat access and voting privileges depending on how much you pay.

Oh my, I didn't know that. Time to read the Patreon page I guess.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 09, 2018, 01:49:19 PM
Of course you then get the problem that people paying have an outsize influence on how or what is being talked about.

That's how it works by design now, since you get chat access and voting privileges depending on how much you pay.

Oh my, I didn't know that. Time to read the Patreon page I guess.

Maybe if they got enough Patreon subscribers they could dump the cast-recited ads.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on August 09, 2018, 06:01:03 PM
Maybe if they got enough Patreon subscribers they could dump the cast-recited ads.

Steve said this about the old membership:

All,

Regarding the ads - We carefully vet every advertiser. We reject most offers. We actually drive our ad agency nuts with our high standards and have almost lost them a couple of times because we are so high maintenance.
Jay really does use Dollar Shave Club. We really do listen to Great Courses, hell, I produced two courses myself. Jay and Cara have used Squarespace.  You will never hear a Lumocity ad on the SGU.

We also have a standing offer to our listeners, if we ever reach 4% premium membership (this is averaged, so higher memberships count for more) we will drop the ads. We are at about 2% now.4% seems reasonable to us.
Premium members get access to an ad-free version of the show.

None of us are getting rich off the SGU. The income is a resource for our skeptical work. (and thank goodness with the lawsuit or we would have been dead)

https://sguforums.com/index.php?topic=47838.75
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Harry Black on August 09, 2018, 08:26:32 PM
^ this was my impression of all the ads.
They seem awkward but in fairness, the rogues have mentioned some of them independantly.
Thats how i found audible
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: stretcher on August 10, 2018, 09:43:11 PM
If there was a knock at my door, and upon answering I am greeted by Steven in boxers stance, dukes up. He screams "Doctor N in this piece!" and hits me with a two-piece combo that sends me sprawling to the mat, where I remain unconscious for a moment. Once I awoke I would no longer listen to or support the SGU.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on August 10, 2018, 10:21:59 PM
If there was a knock at my door, and upon answering I am greeted by Steven in boxers stance, dukes up. He screams "Doctor N in this piece!" and hits me with a two-piece combo that sends me sprawling to the mat, where I remain unconscious for a moment. Once I awoke I would no longer listen to or support the SGU.
You're the joker who flooded his house, I don't blame him one bit.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: haudace on August 11, 2018, 09:58:36 PM
I would unsubscribe If their podcast is no longer pushing skepticism and critical thinking... At the slightest hint of pseudo science - bye bye, sayonara, so long!! That's fair.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on August 11, 2018, 10:07:22 PM
I don't think the commercialization necessarily undermines the credibility of the SGU.

Does the fact that (at least some of) the writers make a living of working for the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, producing the Skeptical Inquirer magazine, undermine the credibility of that magazine? Does the fact that Scientific American is a commercial enterprise undermine the credibility of that magazine? I think that in both cases, the answer is no.

Granted, I think that it is potentially problematic that the SGU rogues themselves speak in the message of the ads could be problematic, but not to the extent that it undermines the entire podcast.

If the SGU, or at least Steve, wanted to make a lot of money, he could leave academia and go into industry. The podcast probably has a lousy return of investment from a monetary perspective. The SGU originally was really just a replacement of the snail mail newsletter of the NESS.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on August 11, 2018, 10:29:04 PM
Granted, I think that it is potentially problematic that the SGU rogues themselves speak in the message of the ads could be problematic, but not to the extent that it undermines the entire podcast.
Wish they had the clout to require the advertisers to read their own copy. As mentioned previously the ads were to be dropped once a certain level of support was attained. Maybe the income is too important to drop them now. The ad free edition is available for those that can't bear hearing ads and for not much money.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: mindme on August 29, 2018, 02:24:13 PM
Granted, I think that it is potentially problematic that the SGU rogues themselves speak in the message of the ads could be problematic, but not to the extent that it undermines the entire podcast.
Wish they had the clout to require the advertisers to read their own copy. As mentioned previously the ads were to be dropped once a certain level of support was attained. Maybe the income is too important to drop them now. The ad free edition is available for those that can't bear hearing ads and for not much money.

I seem to recall they were hoping to get 5,000 patrons. At a low end, assume each pledges a $1 an ep. That's $20K a month. That's $240K a year. I can see why maybe Jay was quitting his job and working full time on SGU.

Anyway, more power to the cast if they can get paid for something I've enjoyed for years. I suppose I'm not a full freeloader as I've given money several times to their legal defense fund.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 29, 2018, 04:34:49 PM
I logged on to the Discord server once or twice, trying to figure out what it is. Apparently it's a chat room. Not a chat board. You interact in real time. That doesn't work well for me. I like the in-depth discussion that can happen on a chat board, where you can post a word or several paragraphs, or even pages, and read other's posts at your leisure and respond after pondering. And a discussion can continue over time. And if I get tired of it I can drop out. A chat room is too much like a bus stop where people come and go and the conversation just rambles. Though Steve did say he'd answer questions if he happens to be at the computer.

I don't get the ads. But I've heard them because once or twice there was a glitch and the ad version was posted before the ad-free episode. I agree that ads are annoying and undermine their credibility, but it is the accepted way to pay for content. If only 2% of listeners pay, then ads are the way to pay the bills. I think it's a fair choice: Pay for the content, or you have to use the skip-forward button or listen to the ads.

I get other podcasts that give you ads even if you donate. They are usually annoying as hell. With one glowing exception. Ross & Carrie manage to do ads that are actually fun to listen to. Maybe that's because of Carrie's personality. But another of my favorite podcasts, Sawbones, makes their ads so annoying I have to jump for the skip-forward button every time they come on. Even if they're advertising the same stuff. If you could bottle Carrie Poppy you could make a million dollars. I wish I could invent a religion and get enough acolytes that she and Ross would come investigate, so I could meet them.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on August 29, 2018, 05:07:33 PM
Granted, I think that it is potentially problematic that the SGU rogues themselves speak in the message of the ads could be problematic, but not to the extent that it undermines the entire podcast.
Wish they had the clout to require the advertisers to read their own copy. As mentioned previously the ads were to be dropped once a certain level of support was attained. Maybe the income is too important to drop them now. The ad free edition is available for those that can't bear hearing ads and for not much money.

I seem to recall they were hoping to get 5,000 patrons. At a low end, assume each pledges a $1 an ep. That's $20K a month. That's $240K a year. I can see why maybe Jay was quitting his job and working full time on SGU.

Anyway, more power to the cast if they can get paid for something I've enjoyed for years. I suppose I'm not a full freeloader as I've given money several times to their legal defense fund.

I wonder if they take into account that right now we are living through an economic boom. When things go less well, people will need to cut costs, and I imagine being an SGU patron is uie up there among non-necessary expenses. So when that happens they might lose a significant number of patrons.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 29, 2018, 05:20:00 PM
I sent an email to ask about what the difference was between being a member through their web site and being a patrion. I'll let you know what they say. It's $5 a show on patrion.

Update: From the Patrion site
Quote
What if I am already an SGU Member?

    If you have joined our previous SGU Membership that is found on our website you can still maintain that membership with us. However, Patreon allows us to offer more rewards and content, so if you want in on the action you can move your membership here. Feel free to email us at membership@TheSkepticsGuide.org if you have any questions. 
I should have read this but never went on the Patreon web site
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 29, 2018, 06:52:35 PM
I switched over to Patreon. I was giving them $12/month under the old system because the level below that was "Dirty Rotten Ape" and I didn't want to be called a Dirty Rotten Ape. The $12 level was some sci-fi thing that I didn't know the meaning of. But there's no $12 level on Patreon. So now I'm giving them $8/month. Maybe they figured that if they eliminated the $12 level more people would move up than down. But that sort of manipulation rubs me the wrong way. If I knew more about the allegations against Evan and whether he's made any amends or whether the rest of the rogues have taken any action about it, I could make a decision regarding my future support. At this point I lack sufficient information.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: arthwollipot on August 29, 2018, 07:42:04 PM
I've largely stopped accessing the Discord because there was rarely anyone there at the times I was able to log on. I enjoy real-time chat, but only when there's someone available to chat with.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: wastrel on August 30, 2018, 12:59:06 AM
I was giving them $12/month under the old system because the level below that was "Dirty Rotten Ape" and I didn't want to be called a Dirty Rotten Ape.

Really?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 30, 2018, 08:06:44 AM
I was giving them $12/month under the old system because the level below that was "Dirty Rotten Ape" and I didn't want to be called a Dirty Rotten Ape.

Really?

Well, that, and I wanted to help out with the costs of the lawsuit. But, yeah, I really felt insulted by the "Dirty Rotten Ape" thing. It actually would have prevented me from giving them money at all if it wasn't my favorite podcast. Why the need to insult people? I get it that it's something to do with their fascination with sci-fi and fantasy, but I enjoyed the show because it's science and skepticism, not because of a shared interest in fantasy. They should not assume that people who share one of their interests will share a different and completely unrelated one.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 30, 2018, 06:24:15 PM
It's just a misquote from Planet of the Apes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cdmqn9JIuzc
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on August 30, 2018, 06:35:11 PM
It's just a misquote from Planet of the Apes.
No, they had it correct,

https://web.archive.org/web/20150303211650/http://www.theskepticsguide.org/member-subscription (https://web.archive.org/web/20150303211650/http://www.theskepticsguide.org/member-subscription)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 30, 2018, 08:45:40 PM
No, they had it correct

Well that's a relief. For a moment there, I thought they might have been slipping.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 31, 2018, 10:07:07 AM
No, they had it correct

Well that's a relief. For a moment there, I thought they might have been slipping.

Okay. Damn Dirty Ape is even worse. And my point stands. I generally won't give money to people who insult me. That the insult was an inside joke drawn from their fascination with a movie genre that does not interest me, is not an excuse. I once knew a guy whose mode of casual communication was gratuitous insults intended as jests. I found it impossible to be his friend. The SGU got away with it in my case because I enjoyed the podcast so much, and then during the lawsuit decided to up my donation, partly to support Steve's cause, and partly to leave the insult behind. Maybe the next level was also an insult, but since I didn't know the reference it didn't bother me. I've since moved to Patreon, at a lower level, since they don't have the same levels there.

I don't mind insults from people who hate me. And I appreciate constructive criticism from my friends. I cannot deal with gratuitous insults from people who are supposed to be my friends.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on August 31, 2018, 01:17:11 PM
Yeah it's definitely an insult and to some extent intended as such. It's an insult that they (probably accurately) assumed wouldn't bother most fans, but there's still a reason the lowest tier was the most negative label.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on August 31, 2018, 01:47:15 PM
I agree, it's a tad obnoxious to put negative-sounding labels on any level of pledge.

Their patrons can do anything they want with their their hard-earned money, and they've made the choice to support this organization. They SGU ought to praise them instead of trying to shame them into giving at a higher level.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 31, 2018, 02:03:36 PM
I don't see the insults as intentional or an attempt at shaming. I see them as unintentional but thoughtless, and based on the assumption that listeners to the SGU would share their enthusiasm for those movies and find the references amusing.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on August 31, 2018, 03:11:13 PM
Wow.  Just...wow.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on August 31, 2018, 03:40:02 PM
I don't have an issue with it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 31, 2018, 04:55:37 PM
Okay. Damn Dirty Ape is even worse. And my point stands. I generally won't give money to people who insult me. That the insult was an inside joke drawn from their fascination with a movie genre that does not interest me

How can a popularly known line from a famous 50 year old movie be considered an inside joke?  ???
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 31, 2018, 05:23:13 PM
Okay. Damn Dirty Ape is even worse. And my point stands. I generally won't give money to people who insult me. That the insult was an inside joke drawn from their fascination with a movie genre that does not interest me

How can a popularly known line from a famous 50 year old movie be considered an inside joke?  ???


I never saw the movie or any of its sequels. I have no interest in the movie. If it showed up for free on Amazon Prime I would not spend the time to watch it. Not everybody is interested in that sort of stuff.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: amysrevenge on August 31, 2018, 05:36:25 PM
It's not about interest in watching dumb old movies.  The Venn diagram of people who would a) be interested in SGU and b) fail to immediately recognize that line from that movie as a piece of harmless fun regardless of whether they had ever seen the movie would overlap, essentially, on just you.  :)  It's a thing that we all collectively know.

(I remember more actual detail from the Simpsons musical Planet of the Apes than from the real movie, which I only ever saw once about 25 years ago and didn't particularly care for.)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: heyalison on August 31, 2018, 05:48:38 PM
(I remember more actual detail from the Simpsons musical Planet of the Apes than from the real movie, which I only ever saw once about 25 years ago and didn't particularly care for.)

Now you've got the Dr. Zaius song is playing in my head!
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 31, 2018, 06:32:07 PM
Okay. Damn Dirty Ape is even worse. And my point stands. I generally won't give money to people who insult me. That the insult was an inside joke drawn from their fascination with a movie genre that does not interest me

How can a popularly known line from a famous 50 year old movie be considered an inside joke?  ???


I never saw the movie or any of its sequels. I have no interest in the movie. If it showed up for free on Amazon Prime I would not spend the time to watch it. Not everybody is interested in that sort of stuff.

You would be the outlier in this group not to get that reference. It, like a lot of movie quotes, has been referenced in so much other source material, that seeing the movie is not required to get it.
All of the Level names would be known to the majority of people who listen to SGU. Even if they haven't seen the movie/TV show it references.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on August 31, 2018, 07:34:16 PM
I never claimed to be normal.

And even though I assumed the reference was from one of those old grade-B sci-fi movies, I still found it demeaning to be called that for giving them money. Maybe I'm just too old, but I don't find insults amusing. Maybe it's my Asperger's. I don't read body language so words are important. There are probably old sci-fi movie references that would be complimentary rather than insulting.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on August 31, 2018, 07:41:03 PM
(I remember more actual detail from the Simpsons musical Planet of the Apes than from the real movie, which I only ever saw once about 25 years ago and didn't particularly care for.)

Now you've got the Dr. Zaius song is playing in my head!
I hate every chimp I see from Chimpan- a to chimpanzee.  Oh yes you finally made a monkey out of me.

God how I love that episode.  Now I will be quoting lines from it all evening.

Try my new scent, "smellin' of Troy."
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Tassie Dave on August 31, 2018, 10:56:19 PM
I never claimed to be normal.

And even though I assumed the reference was from one of those old grade-B sci-fi movies, I still found it demeaning to be called that for giving them money. Maybe I'm just too old, but I don't find insults amusing. Maybe it's my Asperger's. I don't read body language so words are important. There are probably old sci-fi movie references that would be complimentary rather than insulting.

Not being normal is a good thing  ;) I'm from a family of misfits. With a few Aspies included. I've never been diagnosed, but I wouldn't be surprised to be somewhere on the lower end of the autism spectrum myself.

I understand finding the level names insulting and not wanting to be referred as such.

For me they aren't because as a Science Fiction/Fantasy fan of a similar age to the boys (I'm 56), I get the joke and the tongue in cheek manner in which they were used.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: brilligtove on August 31, 2018, 11:15:10 PM
I never claimed to be normal.

And even though I assumed the reference was from one of those old grade-B sci-fi movies, I still found it demeaning to be called that for giving them money. Maybe I'm just too old, but I don't find insults amusing. Maybe it's my Asperger's. I don't read body language so words are important. There are probably old sci-fi movie references that would be complimentary rather than insulting.

Not being normal is a good thing  ;) I'm from a family of misfits. With a few Aspies included. I've never been diagnosed, but I wouldn't be surprised to be somewhere on the lower end of the autism spectrum myself.

I understand finding the level names insulting and not wanting to be referred as such.

For me they aren't because as a Science Fiction/Fantasy fan of a similar age to the boys (I'm 56), I get the joke and the tongue in cheek manner in which they were used.

A common element of the cultures I'm part of1 is increasing hostility and taking-the-piss-of as you become closer. Bluntly, my friend is that asshole fuckpost over there. My enemy is the party of the other opinion. The level of insult you can handle is a measure of the strength of the relationship. This is not a universal cultural approach to intimacy.

Daniel, when you input insults into the equation a parameter to consider is the intent of the insult. Was it meant to be hurtful? Or was it meant to demonstrate the strength of the relationship? I have had friends who might greet me with a huge grin and the words "You radioactive biohazard! How are you!" This is followed with a big hug and drinks and fun.

I am quite sure that 'Damn Dirty Ape' was meant to demonstrate a familiarity and trust, not to tell supporters to "Fuck the hell off you scabby vomit pools."

----
1Canadian (all Provinces but not neccessarily all territories), Trinidadian, UKian, Indian, and Afghan. I haven't encountered a culture that is polite to friends and rude to enemies. So far the opposite is true.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on September 01, 2018, 04:48:09 AM
I haven't thought about those membership names for a long time, and now they're obsolete. But I can recall having a similar reaction. Being a "Damned Dirty Ape" or several of the others wasn't a draw for me. I see the names as mainly a display of the SGU crew's interests, rather than something I'd want to be classified as.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on September 01, 2018, 05:48:23 AM
I haven't thought about those membership names for a long time, and now they're obsolete. But I can recall having a similar reaction. Being a "Damned Dirty Ape" or several of the others wasn't a draw for me. I see the names as mainly a display of the SGU crew's interests, rather than something I'd want to be classified as.

I don't know the reference, but I'd guess that it is a sci-fi reference, as the other membership levels also were sci-fi-based.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on September 01, 2018, 07:22:17 AM
Wow.  Just...wow.
IT DOESN'T TAKE MUCH TO MAKE SKEPTICS PEEVISH. IF I TYPE IN THIS MANNER I'M SHOUTING OR UNSTABLE AS DETERMINED BY OTHERS WHO SAY KNOCK IT OFF.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on September 01, 2018, 10:53:46 AM
... Daniel, when you input insults into the equation a parameter to consider is the intent of the insult. Was it meant to be hurtful? Or was it meant to demonstrate the strength of the relationship? I have had friends who might greet me with a huge grin and the words "You radioactive biohazard! How are you!" This is followed with a big hug and drinks and fun.

I am quite sure that 'Damn Dirty Ape' was meant to demonstrate a familiarity and trust, not to tell supporters to "Fuck the hell off you scabby vomit pools."

You are right and I know that and even knew it then. I still find it hurtful. There's also this: You and your friends know each other. In addition to you knowing the insult was intended to be friendly, your friend knows that you will understand this. Your friend might say to you "You radioactive biohazard! How are you!" but would your friend say this to a stranger who he'd just sat down next to at a movie theater or ball game?

Friends might have a tacit understanding that insults spoken in a friendly tone are acceptable. The rogues don't know us. Some of us will certainly find this amusing. Others won't care. And some will feel hurt. My initial impulse when someone calls me a damn dirty ape is to think, "Well fuck you too." I know they intended it as a joke, which is why I've supported them with money all these years. But I'd respect them more as human beings if they'd shown me the respect to avoid the hurtful jokes.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Captain Video on September 02, 2018, 01:02:50 PM
wow, how did this go from possible sexually inappropriate touching/assult to "they made me feel bad by calling me an old movie reference." ?

"Damn dirty ape" is a metaphor for being human, we are all damn dirty apes. The film is filled with metaphors like that. I can understand how not knowing could make it upsetting but now you know. (BTW I named my dog Dr Zira after one of the lead characters)

Did anyone ever get a response on the sexually inappropriate behavior/assault?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: DevoutCatalyst on September 02, 2018, 01:11:50 PM
Did anyone ever get a response on the sexually inappropriate behavior/assault?
The Catholic church is looking into it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: haudace on September 03, 2018, 10:15:05 AM
wow, how did this go from possible sexually inappropriate touching/assult to "they made me feel bad by calling me an old movie reference." ?

"Damn dirty ape" is a metaphor for being human, we are all damn dirty apes. The film is filled with metaphors like that. I can understand how not knowing could make it upsetting but now you know. (BTW I named my dog Dr Zira after one of the lead characters)

Did anyone ever get a response on the sexually inappropriate behavior/assault?

I watched planet of the apes and I still didn't get the reference. Albeit I am probably not as fascinated with the franchise as the rest of you. I only saw most of the movies once and forgot about them.

I found the levels a little odd, but not really offensive. But I can empathize with whoever may react differently and be hurt by them. At the end of the day they are just words. We live in a time where people are outraged by everything. I can't stand by that.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on September 03, 2018, 10:18:54 AM
https://youtu.be/Cdmqn9JIuzc
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: heyalison on September 03, 2018, 10:57:20 AM
wow, how did this go from possible sexually inappropriate touching/assult to "they made me feel bad by calling me an old movie reference." ?

"Damn dirty ape" is a metaphor for being human, we are all damn dirty apes. The film is filled with metaphors like that. I can understand how not knowing could make it upsetting but now you know. (BTW I named my dog Dr Zira after one of the lead characters)

Did anyone ever get a response on the sexually inappropriate behavior/assault?

I watched planet of the apes and I still didn't get the reference. Albeit I am probably not as fascinated with the franchise as the rest of you. I only saw most of the movies once and forgot about them.

I found the levels a little odd, but not really offensive. But I can empathize with whoever may react differently and be hurt by them. At the end of the day they are just words. We live in a time where people are outraged by everything. I can't stand by that.

Come on, now, don't conflate someone not getting a joke with claims for "outrage culture." I'm sure it's not your intent, but that sounds like the kind of forced anti-SJW/buncha-snowflakes rhetoric that's designed to undermine the voices of people experiencing actual oppression. Let's not make this into the comment section for angry uncles who watch Fox News, especially when this is a sidebar discussion of Planet of The Apes quotes.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: God Bomb on December 26, 2018, 11:03:16 AM
but its so hurtful
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: haudace on December 26, 2018, 08:19:54 PM
wow, how did this go from possible sexually inappropriate touching/assult to "they made me feel bad by calling me an old movie reference." ?

"Damn dirty ape" is a metaphor for being human, we are all damn dirty apes. The film is filled with metaphors like that. I can understand how not knowing could make it upsetting but now you know. (BTW I named my dog Dr Zira after one of the lead characters)

Did anyone ever get a response on the sexually inappropriate behavior/assault?

I watched planet of the apes and I still didn't get the reference. Albeit I am probably not as fascinated with the franchise as the rest of you. I only saw most of the movies once and forgot about them.

I found the levels a little odd, but not really offensive. But I can empathize with whoever may react differently and be hurt by them. At the end of the day they are just words. We live in a time where people are outraged by everything. I can't stand by that.

Come on, now, don't conflate someone not getting a joke with claims for "outrage culture." I'm sure it's not your intent, but that sounds like the kind of forced anti-SJW/buncha-snowflakes rhetoric that's designed to undermine the voices of people experiencing actual oppression. Let's not make this into the comment section for angry uncles who watch Fox News, especially when this is a sidebar discussion of Planet of The Apes quotes.

Not at all. Sometimes, some of the outrage comes across manufactured or unwarranted, like the boy that cried wolf too many times. I am genuinely concerned that exaggerated and continuous outrage over every little thing will actually help undermine the voices of people experiencing actual oppression. Being called a movie reference 'damn dirty ape', which is particular to geek culture, is not the same as being called a racial slur or being emotionally abused.

I hate to re-use your words, but that's genuinely how I feel.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on January 05, 2019, 03:19:40 PM
I am genuinely concerned that exaggerated and continuous outrage over every little thing will actually help undermine the voices of people experiencing actual oppression.

I worry about this same thing. When it comes to politics, we've become a one-note cantor.

Just because the "anti-SJW" crowd throw that accusation around, that doesn't mean it's not a legitimate point. But as usual, the the alt-right are total hypocrites about it. They accuse the "libs" of being too easily triggered, and in the next breath they'll make some vicious joke about rape or the Holocaust and expect everybody to snicker along at the victims' expense.

Of course the left does not have a monopoly on outrage culture, either. The difference is that conservatives get outraged over subjects like egalitarianism and human rights.

But it should be obvious that this divisiveness is a real problem. While everybody's seething with anticipation for the next opportunity to get pissed off, Donald Trump is already prepared with a fresh tweet to stoke the flames.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: haudace on January 10, 2019, 05:51:39 PM
I am genuinely concerned that exaggerated and continuous outrage over every little thing will actually help undermine the voices of people experiencing actual oppression.

I worry about this same thing. When it comes to politics, we've become a one-note cantor.

Just because the "anti-SJW" crowd throw that accusation around, that doesn't mean it's not a legitimate point. But as usual, the the alt-right are total hypocrites about it. They accuse the "libs" of being too easily triggered, and in the next breath they'll make some vicious joke about rape or the Holocaust and expect everybody to snicker along at the victims' expense.

Of course the left does not have a monopoly on outrage culture, either. The difference is that conservatives get outraged over subjects like egalitarianism and human rights.

But it should be obvious that this divisiveness is a real problem. While everybody's seething with anticipation for the next opportunity to get pissed off, Donald Trump is already prepared with a fresh tweet to stoke the flames.

I hear ya, both sides seem to suffer these bursts of unfounded outrage.

Anyways the latest one is pretty funny. Hehe

https://youtu.be/E8yWHqziyco

https://youtu.be/De1dQHOUcZs

Someone doesn't like free speech.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 12, 2019, 11:53:36 PM
All - I am sorry for the hurt feelings being expressed on this thread. We care deeply about this community (our longest running legacy) and all our listeners and appreciate the feedback. Some of the topics raised are complex and I can get to them separately, but first I need to respond to the accusations against Evan.

I have directly confronted Evan with them. He completely denies them, or any behavior that he can remember that could have crossed any lines. However, I also have no reason to doubt the accuser's sincerity. We of course take these issues extremely seriously. Evan, and all the rogues, understand that any such behavior is completely unacceptable.

I have already apologized to the accuser, and I apologize again (I am respecting their anonymity as they have apparently not revealed themselves). Given that I have no ability to resolve the difference in accounts, we will have to all think about this more deeply and discuss what other response is appropriate here, would best serve fairness all around and the seriousness of the accusations.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 13, 2019, 12:16:32 AM
So this woman misinterpreted Evan groping her on three separate occasions, I guess.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on January 13, 2019, 12:43:28 AM
Thank you for addressing this issue, Dr. Novella. It is extremely reassuring to know that you and the rogues are taking this so seriously. I really appreciate you communicating this on the SGU forum.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 13, 2019, 03:45:30 AM
All - I am sorry for the hurt feelings being expressed on this thread. We care deeply about this community (our longest running legacy) and all our listeners and appreciate the feedback. Some of the topics raised are complex and I can get to them separately, but first I need to respond to the accusations against Evan.

I have directly confronted Evan with them. He completely denies them, or any behavior that he can remember that could have crossed any lines. However, I also have no reason to doubt the accuser's sincerity. We of course take these issues extremely seriously. Evan, and all the rogues, understand that any such behavior is completely unacceptable.

I have already apologized to the accuser, and I apologize again (I am respecting their anonymity as they have apparently not revealed themselves). Given that I have no ability to resolve the difference in accounts, we will have to all think about this more deeply and discuss what other response is appropriate here, would best serve fairness all around and the seriousness of the accusations.

Hi Steve, first I wanted to thank you sincerely for coming here to talk about all this.  As I'm sure you've gathered from this thread, there are a lot of things I'm anxious to hear your perspective and opinions on but most important of all is that thing I honestly (though naively, I admit) didn't intend to discuss here and respectfully, I'd like to clear it up before addressing any of those other items.  I guess before anything else, could you tell us what you apologized to her for?  Was it just a general apology for what she's been through or was it for not acting on it before now as she's said you've known for a while, or something else?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 13, 2019, 05:30:38 AM
All - I am sorry for the hurt feelings being expressed on this thread. We care deeply about this community (our longest running legacy) and all our listeners and appreciate the feedback. Some of the topics raised are complex and I can get to them separately, but first I need to respond to the accusations against Evan.

I have directly confronted Evan with them. He completely denies them, or any behavior that he can remember that could have crossed any lines. However, I also have no reason to doubt the accuser's sincerity. We of course take these issues extremely seriously. Evan, and all the rogues, understand that any such behavior is completely unacceptable.

I have already apologized to the accuser, and I apologize again (I am respecting their anonymity as they have apparently not revealed themselves). Given that I have no ability to resolve the difference in accounts, we will have to all think about this more deeply and discuss what other response is appropriate here, would best serve fairness all around and the seriousness of the accusations.

 In any other scenario similar to this one, posters would not be literally thanking the show host for finally acknowledging that his co-host "probably" didn't do what [anonymous] says he did.

 The mentality on these forums is pretty clear in other cases involving such misconduct. I've made similar posts to Steve's and they were always shot down, because they should have been. Is it that Evan gets a pass because he "completely denies" what he's accused of? That's like Trump logic right there. And to be clear, you believe that Evan never did anything he has been alleged to have done regarding groping a fan, right? On three different occasions as well, I think she said.

 And what do you mean you don't doubt the accuser's sincerity? You don't doubt she's genuine, then why don't you believe her? And if you don't believe her, can you provide an explanation as to why she's making these accusations? All in her head? What?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 13, 2019, 07:33:54 AM
These are obviously very complex situations. I apologized to the accuser for what she has been through, told her such behavior is unacceptable, and said I would address it with Evan, which I have done. I believe she is sincere, but that does not mean there isn't room for interpretation of what happened. Evan completely denies anything, and I believe he is sincere also (knowing him as long as I have). In these situations where there is no material way to resolve what actually happened, pattern of behavior is what is important. The accuser said she posted this to see if anyone else would come forward, and no one has. Obviously if there were multiple accusers, that would be a completely different situation.

So  - no one gets a pass. We are handling this like any University, for example, would - preponderance of evidence, pattern of behavior, plausibility of the denial, room for interpretation, etc. Accusation does not equal guilt, but any accusation is taken seriously, never dismissed out of hand, and dealt with. Given the specifics of this situation I thought I dealt with it sufficiently. If the accuser is not satisfied then we will discuss it again, and think carefully about what else we can do, again trying to be fair to everyone. I am also happy to follow up with the accuser to see why they were disappointed and what remedy they think is appropriate.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 13, 2019, 07:37:11 AM
These are obviously very complex situations. I apologized to the accuser for what she has been through, told her such behavior is unacceptable, and said I would address it with Evan, which I have done. I believe she is sincere, but that does not mean there isn't room for interpretation of what happened. Evan completely denies anything, and I believe he is sincere also (knowing him as long as I have). In these situations where there is no material way to resolve what actually happened, pattern of behavior is what is important. The accuser said she posted this to see if anyone else would come forward, and no one has. Obviously if there were multiple accusers, that would be a completely different situation.

So  - no one gets a pass. We are handling this like any University, for example, would - preponderance of evidence, pattern of behavior, plausibility of the denial, room for interpretation, etc. Accusation does not equal guilt, but any accusation is taken seriously, never dismissed out of hand, and dealt with. Given the specifics of this situation I thought I dealt with it sufficiently. If the accuser is not satisfied then we will discuss it again, and think carefully about what else we can do, again trying to be fair to everyone. I am also happy to follow up with the accuser to see why they were disappointed and what remedy they think is appropriate.

I know you're right. I sincerely apologize for being so assuming and aggressive. This topic just really gets under my skin, clouding my thinking alas. And as someone else said, I do appreciate your responding. Thank you.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 13, 2019, 10:05:16 AM
These are obviously very complex situations. I apologized to the accuser for what she has been through, told her such behavior is unacceptable, and said I would address it with Evan, which I have done. I believe she is sincere, but that does not mean there isn't room for interpretation of what happened. Evan completely denies anything, and I believe he is sincere also (knowing him as long as I have). In these situations where there is no material way to resolve what actually happened, pattern of behavior is what is important. The accuser said she posted this to see if anyone else would come forward, and no one has. Obviously if there were multiple accusers, that would be a completely different situation.

So  - no one gets a pass. We are handling this like any University, for example, would - preponderance of evidence, pattern of behavior, plausibility of the denial, room for interpretation, etc. Accusation does not equal guilt, but any accusation is taken seriously, never dismissed out of hand, and dealt with. Given the specifics of this situation I thought I dealt with it sufficiently. If the accuser is not satisfied then we will discuss it again, and think carefully about what else we can do, again trying to be fair to everyone. I am also happy to follow up with the accuser to see why they were disappointed and what remedy they think is appropriate.

The impression I got was that she had come to you a while ago with these complaints and that after she made them, you had not followed up with her. She never directly said that from what I recall and as I was not in a position to gather additional facts I never pressured her for more details than she was comfortable giving of her own accord; was that inference correct? Did you fail to follow up with her until you saw this thread?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on January 13, 2019, 12:49:39 PM
I can't say I have been following this very closely, but I really appreciate that Steve takes the time from his busy schedule to respond to this thread. :)

Hey Steve if you are reading this, just wanted to say that reading your blogs, the posts coming online around 2 pm my local time, are among of the highlights of my weekdays, and have been for years. Thank you for that, and please keep up the good work. :)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 13, 2019, 01:35:30 PM
All - I am sorry for the hurt feelings being expressed on this thread. We care deeply about this community (our longest running legacy) and all our listeners and appreciate the feedback. Some of the topics raised are complex and I can get to them separately, but first I need to respond to the accusations against Evan.

I have directly confronted Evan with them. He completely denies them, or any behavior that he can remember that could have crossed any lines. However, I also have no reason to doubt the accuser's sincerity. We of course take these issues extremely seriously. Evan, and all the rogues, understand that any such behavior is completely unacceptable.

I have already apologized to the accuser, and I apologize again (I am respecting their anonymity as they have apparently not revealed themselves). Given that I have no ability to resolve the difference in accounts, we will have to all think about this more deeply and discuss what other response is appropriate here, would best serve fairness all around and the seriousness of the accusations.

 In any other scenario similar to this one, posters would not be literally thanking the show host for finally acknowledging that his co-host "probably" didn't do what [anonymous] says he did.

I can only speak for myself, but while I think Steve absolutely has a responsibility to address this complaint somewhere he's under no obligation to answer people on this forum specifically.  He owes me as an individual nothing, so to have the chance to personally engage with him when he has so much other stuff going on in his life is indeed something I'm thankful for.  I would feel the same way if someone I can't stand and don't respect at all decided to enter a forum where I can personally and directly ask him questions he will answer.  Hell, if Trump came to the President Trump thread, I'd thank him for it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 13, 2019, 01:50:00 PM
It isn't really just a simple complaint.

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 13, 2019, 02:10:14 PM
It isn't really just a simple complaint.

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

Did I say it was?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 13, 2019, 02:57:49 PM
No, you only said it was a complaint, I added the "simple", sorry.

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Beef Wellington on January 14, 2019, 04:08:01 PM
I'm very glad Steve has addressed this. I haven't listened to the show (besides the newly-restored 5x5 eps) since reading the allegations a while back, but maybe now I can start up again.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 14, 2019, 06:26:26 PM
I'm very glad Steve has addressed this. I haven't listened to the show (besides the newly-restored 5x5 eps) since reading the allegations a while back, but maybe now I can start up again.
How does Steve responding on the forums (after I emailed him) make a difference? His post more or less says Evan fervently denies the allegation, and Steve believes he's sincere. That changes nothing.

 Also, honestly, what sort of official response were you expecting? Anything wildly different than his post? His post is what I imagined, except he made it here and not via email.   

 I cannot image how reading that response from Steve must feel as someone who finally mustered the courage to make public his or her very troubling experience.

 I do realize, however, there is no evidence in either direction and that therefore no meaningful action can norr should be taken (at this time).

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Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Beef Wellington on January 14, 2019, 06:50:57 PM
I'm very glad Steve has addressed this. I haven't listened to the show (besides the newly-restored 5x5 eps) since reading the allegations a while back, but maybe now I can start up again.
How does Steve responding on the forums (after I emailed him) make a difference? His post more or less says Evan fervently denies the allegation, and Steve believes he's sincere. That changes nothing.

 Also, honestly, what sort of official response were you expecting?

Anything. And now there's something- the fact that he's acknowledged the situation. That's a good thing, isn't it? If you were the push to get that response from him, then I thank you. Before today, I could only assume he didn't care enough to bring it up. Now I know that he does care, so I'm no longer left wondering whether or not he's a good person every time I hear the show's intro. The topic asks what it would take for you to stop listening, and I answered that question. I'm not sure how expanding on that by posting my relief at this update is a bad thing.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on January 14, 2019, 07:16:07 PM
I'm very glad Steve has addressed this. I haven't listened to the show (besides the newly-restored 5x5 eps) since reading the allegations a while back, but maybe now I can start up again.
How does Steve responding on the forums (after I emailed him) make a difference? His post more or less says Evan fervently denies the allegation, and Steve believes he's sincere. That changes nothing.

 Also, honestly, what sort of official response were you expecting? Anything wildly different than his post? His post is what I imagined, except he made it here and not via email.   

 I cannot image how reading that response from Steve must feel as someone who finally mustered the courage to make public his or her very troubling experience.

 I do realize, however, there is no evidence in either direction and that therefore no meaningful action can norr should be taken (at this time).

Emphasis mine.

Steve said a good deal more than that. Read his post.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 14, 2019, 07:45:46 PM
I want to give Steve a chance to respond so I'm not going to get deep into it right now, but I'm dividing this matter into two, highly concerning parts.  First, there is the accusation itself and what should be done about it.  I think Steve's comment here has addressed that in a broad and non-specific manner.  I have a thought about something else I'd like to see from him and the show on it, but that can wait until he responds further and depends on something else as well.

The other thing that I'm highly concerned about is that it may have been the case that Steve (and maybe others in the SGU) knew about this over a year ago and not only didn't address it, but didn't respond to 6EQUJ5 until now.  I'm not 100% sure that's the case, and as usual there may be some misunderstanding or misconception somewhere so I want to hear what Steve says about it before reacting.  I will say though, that given the similar apparent pattern with Joshie Berger, if it is indeed the case it will be no small matter for me. 

Respectfully, to everyone else's thoughts and opinions on the matter though, Steve has dropped by and has given the impression that he will engage further here, at least a little and I think that we should all just take a step back and allow him a chance to do so before tangenting into our own disagreements and feelings.  He's a primary person involved, he's made himself available, and he should have a chance to present his side of things before any side discussions about what we think should be done about it.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on January 14, 2019, 08:49:09 PM
All - I am sorry for the hurt feelings being expressed on this thread. We care deeply about this community (our longest running legacy) and all our listeners and appreciate the feedback. Some of the topics raised are complex and I can get to them separately, but first I need to respond to the accusations against Evan.

I have directly confronted Evan with them. He completely denies them, or any behavior that he can remember that could have crossed any lines. However, I also have no reason to doubt the accuser's sincerity. We of course take these issues extremely seriously. Evan, and all the rogues, understand that any such behavior is completely unacceptable.

I have already apologized to the accuser, and I apologize again (I am respecting their anonymity as they have apparently not revealed themselves). Given that I have no ability to resolve the difference in accounts, we will have to all think about this more deeply and discuss what other response is appropriate here, would best serve fairness all around and the seriousness of the accusations.

Thank you for responding to this, Steve, and I look forward to hearing more about this.  I trust that you know that in this day and age it is no longer acceptable (not that it ever really was) merely to hope that such accusations will go away. As the SGU’s profile grows, it will only become more important that you make meaningful efforts to address this issue.  Frankly, I find it hard not to worry that this is part of a pattern of failure adequately to address such issues, especially in light of assertions that members of the SGU were aware of the allegations against Joshie Berger while he continued to be a guest on the show and the SGU’s notable silence on issues of misogyny and sexual harassment in skepticism and at skeptical events. I think you can and must do better.

The impression I got was that she had come to you a while ago with these complaints and that after she made them, you had not followed up with her. She never directly said that from what I recall and as I was not in a position to gather additional facts I never pressured her for more details than she was comfortable giving of her own accord; was that inference correct? Did you fail to follow up with her until you saw this thread?

I have corresponded with the accuser about the issue and, while I cannot reveal anything she shared with me without her permission, that is my understanding as well.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 14, 2019, 11:11:18 PM
It's time to hire a private detective. I'm kidding, but what should be the next course of action?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 14, 2019, 11:21:10 PM
It's time to hire a private detective. I'm kidding, but what should be the next course of action?

Wait for Steve to come back and address the concern he may have sat on this for over a year.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 15, 2019, 08:01:25 AM
The accuser did contact me about a year ago, and I did respond immediately to them. My failing was is not following up adequately with them. I thought I had given them proper assurances. The reason I had not addressed it since is because I was simply not aware of this thread. I usually monitor the show threads, but not other threads here unless they are brought to my attention. As soon as this one was brought to my attention, I responded.
I have now also e-mailed the accuser, apologized for not following up adequately before, and gave them an update. I also opened a dialogue with them to explore what else can and should be done given the situation. I am open to suggestions here as well.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 15, 2019, 08:09:01 AM
I'm curious what you said to the accuser. Did you tell her that truthfully you don't believe her?

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 15, 2019, 08:19:23 AM
I am starting a separate reply for the Joshie Berger question.

This is more complicated than many here may realize. What Joshie did was wrong, and we unequivocally condemn it. We did not know about it before Joshie appeared on the show. That is simply untrue, and we have already clarified that. As soon as these allegations were made we made a statement here on the forums that Joshie will no longer be appearing on the SGU.

The nuance here is that Joshie is also a victim of an extreme cult, and people in his situation have a massive risk of alcoholism. Joshie is an alcoholic, something which is absolutely not an excuse but is a factor in his behavior. Our approach to Joshie has been - you need to admit what you have done, make whatever ammends you can, admit your problem with alcohol, and seek appropriate help. We will support Joshie, as friends and colleagues, on this path. We believe firmly in redemption and giving people an opportunity to make things right. It's easy to simply condemn people without trying to understand the nuances of their situation or thinking carefully about what response serves all ethical considerations the best.

Joshie has not really done this, and instead has taken some time away to reflect. Meanwhile, we have severed our professional relationship with him.

The situation is similar with Brian Dunning. He is a friend and a colleague, but he was convicted of a crime. My approach to him has always been - we are happy to support you on the road to redemption, but you have to come clean, admit your mistakes and own them. We would not minimize or ignore the situation. After Brian paid his debt to society, which was substantial, he has tried to simply do good skeptical work and forge ahead. He has admitted what he has done, although the situation is admittedly complex (and to this day I don't fully understand the legal nuances).

Part of my calculus in trying to decide how to respond to these situations is based on whether or not I think the person involved is generally a good person or not. When a good person does something bad or makes a mistake, I don't immediately cast them into the outer darkness. Yes, there are consequences, we have to support and prioritize any victims, admit fault, and pay whatever price is appropriate. Professionally we will distance ourselves from anyone who has done something wrong on that level. But we don't permanently condemn them. They always have the opportunity to show that they are a basically good person who did something wrong, make amends, and redeem themselves.

You may disagree with this, but this is my approach.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 15, 2019, 08:23:20 AM
I admire your approach. I think people were upset because, considering what charges Brian was convicted of, it wasn't a good idea not to allow him to seek money (or was he selling something?) on the show.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 15, 2019, 08:25:16 AM
I did not say I don't believe the accuser. I believe she is sincere. I also believe Evan is sincere. It is possible for two people to honestly disagree about how to interpret a situation.
As I stated - I have no way to materially resolve this difference. So - I am taking the standard approach that institutions take, basing decisions on patterns of behavior, etc.
Evan is aware of the accusations, and is on notice that his behavior going forward must be absolutely pristine, no room for even misinterpretation.
If any further information comes to light, I will respond appropriately.
The matter is still open, as far as I am concerned, and as I said I have tried to open another dialogue with the accuser.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 15, 2019, 08:28:16 AM
Bill - we vetted the project he was promoting. There was no chance of fraud there.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 15, 2019, 08:29:53 AM
I'm sure you did. I am just saying, I've read some distrustful reactions to his appearance on the show based mostly on what I said earlier. I think that's why folks were concerned or angry.

I agree with how you're handling this. I apologise for being rude. I think the many other similar situations to this this concerning people in the skeptical movement is getting under my skin, is all. I understand there is not much more you can do right now with there being really no evidence to prove either way what did or didn't happen or separate interpretations, as you say.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on January 15, 2019, 11:36:58 AM
Steve, I understand that there may be no way of determining the facts in this particular case, but it is clear that the report of sexual harassment was not handled adequately. What I would definitely like to see from the SGU going forward is the establishment of clear policies on sexual harassment; the establishment of a reporting procedure for sexual harassment by employees, guests and volunteers; and a commitment to third-party investigation of future incidents. I don't think that you, Steve, can be responsible for investigating potential allegations against your own brothers or long-time friends, and I feel that requiring potential victims to report misconduct to you might have a stifling affect on reporting.  I would also like to see you institute a sexual harassment policy and reporting procedure for NECSS. To me, these are the kinds of responses that we can reasonably expect and which could help you to become leaders on this issue in the skeptical community.  And leadership is what I want and believe we should expect from the SGU.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 15, 2019, 11:40:30 AM
The accuser did contact me about a year ago, and I did respond immediately to them. My failing was is not following up adequately with them. I thought I had given them proper assurances. The reason I had not addressed it since is because I was simply not aware of this thread. I usually monitor the show threads, but not other threads here unless they are brought to my attention. As soon as this one was brought to my attention, I responded.
I have now also e-mailed the accuser, apologized for not following up adequately before, and gave them an update. I also opened a dialogue with them to explore what else can and should be done given the situation. I am open to suggestions here as well.

Sorry if I was unclear, I in no way expected you would have ever been aware of this thread.  It wasn't made as an open letter to you or anything and I've been around here long enough to know that your presence outside of the episode threads is rare and usually brief so I had no expectations that you'd respond to anything said here.  My sole concern was with your response to 6EQUJ5.  This situation is awkward for me because I'm not directly involved and as such have no direct and specific knowledge of any of this.  It's further complicated because it seems 6EQUJ5 is willing to let it be.  Since I want to respect her presumed wishes I will not be asking for any details of the assaults or Evan's denials of them and I will consider the matter now closed to her satisfaction unless otherwise specified by her.  If she's good to move on, then what right have I not to be?  I will say this though about misunderstandings and two people having to different perceptions of an event while neither is lying: if I were ever told by a friend of mine that I'd done anything akin to groping them on multiple occasions and that they, in none of those occasions wanted it and I had no reason to believe they were insincere, I would be apologizing profusely, no matter the situation or how confused I might be that they perceived something that way.  It may not have ever been my intention to take advantage, but that doesn't change that a wrong was committed that I would need to apologize for. 

With regards to the delay in response however, I feel I really need a clearer idea of what was communicated (in general terms) by you.  You say you responded immediately; was that a simple "I'll look into it," and then silence, was it a response where you talked to Evan and told her what he said and what your position was, or was it something in between? 

On the topic of suggestions for what you should do, I would not want you to do anything on this specific accusation without 6EQUJ5's consent, but I'm left unsettled by the fact that most listeners and admirers of your's and Evan's will never even be aware of this.  If she is OK with it, I'd suggest making a public statement akin to what you've said here; that a person you know but wishes to remain anonymous made an accusation that Evan groped her multiple times, that Evan has categorically denied doing anything wrong, and that the accuser is not seeking any further action.  I get that it has the potential to be unfair to Evan given the complexity of the situation, but in the interest of transparency and to give others an opportunity to come forward and show a pattern of behavior you might not be aware of, I think it would be appropriate.  You mentioned good and bad people and mistakes versus patterns of behavior and in large part I very much agree.  I have a few friends with whom, were I in your position I would have to distance myself professionally, but will not abandon them personally.  Long-term friendships are not things to be easily discarded and I get that so whatever you decide to do publicly, I'll respect whatever you chose to do personally.  That said, long-term friendships also are prone to a positive bias and an incomplete selection of knowledge about a person.  As much as you may know a person well, you can never truly know what's going on in their heads and what they do when you are not around.  For instance, I had no idea that one of my closest friends was a sex addict who had been sleeping with prostitutes for years until his girlfriend found out and he confessed everything to me.  Also, my parents didn't tell me until I was in my 20s that my mother was married before she was with my father; no big secret, just never told me.  People are surprisingly good at keeping the things they are ashamed of a secret from even their closest friends.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 15, 2019, 12:24:16 PM
I am starting a separate reply for the Joshie Berger question.

This is more complicated than many here may realize. What Joshie did was wrong, and we unequivocally condemn it. We did not know about it before Joshie appeared on the show. That is simply untrue, and we have already clarified that. As soon as these allegations were made we made a statement here on the forums that Joshie will no longer be appearing on the SGU.

The nuance here is that Joshie is also a victim of an extreme cult, and people in his situation have a massive risk of alcoholism. Joshie is an alcoholic, something which is absolutely not an excuse but is a factor in his behavior. Our approach to Joshie has been - you need to admit what you have done, make whatever ammends you can, admit your problem with alcohol, and seek appropriate help. We will support Joshie, as friends and colleagues, on this path. We believe firmly in redemption and giving people an opportunity to make things right. It's easy to simply condemn people without trying to understand the nuances of their situation or thinking carefully about what response serves all ethical considerations the best.

Joshie has not really done this, and instead has taken some time away to reflect. Meanwhile, we have severed our professional relationship with him.

With regards to Joshie, I'm not in a position to evaluate who is correct here about who knew what when.  I believe the person's complaint didn't mention you and was only about one or both of your brothers and maybe their wives knowing about it before having him back on.  It may be that you, personally didn't know about it until it was made public.  It may also be that there is some misunderstanding or confusion on their part, thinking something was made clear when it was not.  I don't know them, I don't know you and your brothers, and I don't have any inside information on who was told what when so in light of two competing claims, I don't really see a way of sorting it out unless there is some sort of email trail showing someone was told.  Again though, I was left concerned after you dropped in the thread to say that you were shocked and were not going to have him back on the show, but failed to address or even acknowledge the concern that it appeared to be the case your brother(s) sat on this until it could no longer be ignored and knowingly invited him back on the show.  I still acknowledge that you have no obligation to read the entire thread or have an in depth conversation here because we want it, but it left me in a very uncomfortable place having it seem like you side-stepped a very serious allegation. 

The situation is similar with Brian Dunning. He is a friend and a colleague, but he was convicted of a crime. My approach to him has always been - we are happy to support you on the road to redemption, but you have to come clean, admit your mistakes and own them. We would not minimize or ignore the situation. After Brian paid his debt to society, which was substantial, he has tried to simply do good skeptical work and forge ahead. He has admitted what he has done, although the situation is admittedly complex (and to this day I don't fully understand the legal nuances).

Honestly, of the three situations we're discussing here, this one seems the clearest to me.  He's a long-time friend and colleague, the fraud charges weren't anything like stealing or misusing money from donations, but more of a grey technical area where it seemed fairly easy to fool yourself into thinking you were doing no harm, he's been punished by the courts, and is now trying to get back into the community you are so prominent in.  I get it, you wanted to help a friend out.  One major problem I have though is that even here you say you still don't fully understand the legal nuances.  Don't you owe it to your listeners and members to do your due diligence on the matter before literally asking them to give him money?  Beyond that though is the frustrating fact that on the episode you said very clearly that you and Brian would be on hand on Facebook to address any listeners concerns over the fraud charges (or something to that effect, I don't remember the exact wording) and afterwards you were completely absent and Brian did little more than berate and dismiss off-hand anyone expressing concerns. 

I feel I need to say this so you can get a fuller picture of where I am coming from, but while I've never been one to hero worship anyone, you have been the public person I've admired most in my life for the way you methodically and dispassionately approach topics yes, but mainly for the way you've seemed so good at controlling for your biases, especially on topics where you might be naturally inclined to do what most people do and generalize, dismiss, and ignore.  It's not lightly that I say you have been the closest thing to a hero I've ever had and were it not for that fact, and the impact your show has had on my life, I would not be here and would not feel the way I do.  I would probably just walk away and be silent.  The reason I started this thread was that I was starting to notice what appeared to be a pattern of behavior from you of avoiding anything that someone you know well has done something bad.  I couldn't say for sure that it was you trying to sweep these things under the rug and hoping we don't notice or forget about them, but the fact I couldn't rule it out really hit me hard. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on January 15, 2019, 01:34:29 PM
The nuance here is that Joshie is also a victim of an extreme cult, and people in his situation have a massive risk of alcoholism. Joshie is an alcoholic, something which is absolutely not an excuse but is a factor in his behavior. Our approach to Joshie has been - you need to admit what you have done, make whatever ammends you can, admit your problem with alcohol, and seek appropriate help. We will support Joshie, as friends and colleagues, on this path. We believe firmly in redemption and giving people an opportunity to make things right. It's easy to simply condemn people without trying to understand the nuances of their situation or thinking carefully about what response serves all ethical considerations the best.

Joshie has not really done this, and instead has taken some time away to reflect. Meanwhile, we have severed our professional relationship with him.

Perhaps I am bad at comprehension, but what does this mean? Has Joshie not sought appropriate help, but the SGU supports his path to better himself, but Joshie has not really done what you supported him doing to go forward? ???

Please, someone, help me understand this.

I will keep following this thread with interest. And I think the SGU approach in dealing with ethical concerns makes a lot of sense.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on January 15, 2019, 03:11:35 PM
Perhaps I am bad at comprehension, but what does this mean? Has Joshie not sought appropriate help, but the SGU supports his path to better himself, but Joshie has not really done what you supported him doing to go forward? ???

Please, someone, help me understand this.

I will keep following this thread with interest. And I think the SGU approach in dealing with ethical concerns makes a lot of sense.

It's not really clear what exactly Steve is saying Joshie hasn't done.  We know that he has not taken accountability for his actions but has instead withdrawn entirely from public life.  I have not heard that he has made any attempt to make amends, either, though I'm not sure that there's anything he can really do at this point. What is unclear is whether Steve is implying that Joshie hasn't sought help for his alcohol addiction or not.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on January 15, 2019, 03:52:58 PM
My reading is Joshie has not sought help nor sought to make amends but has withdrawn from at least public life but that Steve et al, support whatever attempt Joshie makes at improving, though they seem to have reservations regarding his current path.

To be fair, its possible that Steve does not feel he as the right to be more explicit regarding what ever Joshie has chosen to do. 

I am fairly satisfied with the Steve's statments in this thread though.  I would still appreciate a similar statement on the podcast though.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 15, 2019, 05:40:37 PM
Regarding Joshie - to clarify, we gave Joshie our advice, and we told him what we would need to publicly support him. He chose not to do that, and instead withdrew. I understand the need to get away from such a toxic situation, and we are here for him if he ever wants to return to our community, with the same criteria.
And to be clear, no one on the SGU knew of these allegations prior to Joshie being on the show. Mars told Jay's wife, who then assumed that Jay must already know and never spoke of it. Jay and Bob only knew that Joshie and Mars fought, but had no knowledge of physical abuse. I knew nothing.

Regarding Evan's accuser, I am waiting for them to respond to may latest attempt to contact them to see where we are. Again, I am open to further remedy if they feel it is necessary.

NECSS already has a harassment policy and procedure (which I, incidentally, wrote)
The SGU has 1 employee. Everyone else is an independent contractor. We do have a harassment policy, which is don't fucking do it or I will kick you in the ass. To be serious - everyone knows what is expected, what is acceptable, and what isn't, and we have had many long conversations about it. The spirit and details are essentially the NECSS policy. This applies at any time any of the rogues are on SGU time - at conferences, etc. Anything outside that, frankly, is personal. I don't control what they do in their personal life.

That does not mean they are not responsible for what they do, and the SGU basically has a ethical policy, that everyone who is professionally associated with the SGU needs to act legally and ethically or we will respond appropriately on a case-by-base basis. I don't see how a role for an independent third party would even work. The alleged events took place completely outside anything to do with the SGU. The SGU has no legal standing at all. This was not at an event or anything where I have any authority. The accuser came to me simply for my information.

It's not like a university where alleged events happen on campus, or a company where harassment happens in the work place.

So there is no way around that I will have to decide for the SGU how the rogue's behavior affects their standing with the SGU. That is the only scope here.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on January 15, 2019, 07:09:59 PM
Steve: Your response regarding the issue with Evan and his accuser leaves me very confused concerning Evan’s denial. The term “groping” can encompass a wide variety of actions. I can’t help but wonder if Evan is denying that a specific action took place, or if he is denying that a specific action constituted groping. I do not want to know what specific action is alleged, since the accuser seems not to have specified, and it’s none of my business. But it seems material to the issue as far as we’re discussing it here whether specific actions are being denied, or merely whether admitted actions constitute groping.

Regarding Joshie Berger, it seems clear he is guilty of assault. That is inexcusable. If I learned that a friend of mine had done what he did, I do not think I could remain friends with him. Maybe if they paid the penalties for their actions, and truly changed their life, and the victim was satisfied, but even then probably not.

Brian Dunning stole money. Period. He stole it from the people who should have gotten credit for the advertising clicks, and the revenue. IMO this is a far lesser crime than assault. He served time and had to give back the money. He does his own reputation no good by trying to couch the issue as other people’s fault. He says “I broke the law and I accept responsibility,” and in the same breath he says it wasn’t really his fault. But this just doesn’t anger me the way assault does, or even unwelcome groping. I’m not going to trust him, but I can’t really get angry at him.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 15, 2019, 07:35:42 PM
The alleged groping was ambiguous but that is how they interpreted it.
Evan denies any memory of anything at all, no unwanted touching.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 15, 2019, 08:55:19 PM
Thanks for the explanation regarding Joshie, that makes sense and seems very plausible given what Marz had said.  I'm satisfied on the matter.

I still want to know about Evan's complaint; did you originally respond to her in a "I'll look into it" sort of way and then not do anything for months or even a year, or did you actually look into it when she first complained, got back to her and thought it was resolved, but did not realize she was left unsatisfied?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: brilligtove on January 15, 2019, 11:57:23 PM
Steve, community - as a part of this fractious, contentious, combative, demanding group, I appreciate that you are all having a fairly reasonable discussion about a fundamentally unreasonable topic.

As an aside, having a policy of "don't fucking do it" is completely reasonable to me. When I ran a social media group for a not-for-profit our entire policy was, "Don't be an asshole." It worked quite well for years.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on January 16, 2019, 09:19:15 AM
The alleged groping was ambiguous but that is how they interpreted it.
Evan denies any memory of anything at all, no unwanted touching.

Thanks for the clarification.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: xenu on January 16, 2019, 10:13:14 AM
Thanks for joining this thread Steve. Your input is good for this discussion.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 16, 2019, 12:30:47 PM
Hypothetically, how many accusers coming forward would it take to believe Evan committed inappropriate sexual behavior? Also, would you it affect your conclusion if this particular accuser, alone, came forward with explicit details, as opposed to the rather vague understanding of events we currently have? I'm only curious in a serious way.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Steven Novella on January 17, 2019, 07:03:29 AM
Two independent credible accusers would establish a pattern of behavior.
I was given details, they are plausible but ambiguous. (to clarify, the information I was given was not ambiguous, the behavior itself was)
Also, keep in mind, I know Evan very well. This is completely out of character for him, there is nothing to indicate he would do something like this. That doesn't make it impossible, but it goes to whether or not there is a pattern of behavior.
I also have no reason to doubt the sincerity of the accuser. That's why these situations are so difficult.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: heyalison on January 17, 2019, 09:01:14 AM
To be honest this conversation does not fill me with much hope. First, I don't know any other situation where "He's my buddy! I know him, he'd never do anything untoward," would be accepted as an excuse. If anything, #metoo has shown us again and again that men are often (either legitimately or conveniently) clueless about the behaviors their male friends engage in.  And second, there is the issue that this conversation is happening on a messageboard that has a history and reputation for driving women away with sexism and harassment. There are, so far as I can tell, no women involved in the discussion at this point. I'm not sure about other women, but that does not give me any confidence that skeptical or SGU-related spaces are safe for me.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 17, 2019, 10:55:55 AM
To be honest this conversation does not fill me with much hope. First, I don't know any other situation where "He's my buddy! I know him, he'd never do anything untoward," would be accepted as an excuse. If anything, #metoo has shown us again and again that men are often (either legitimately or conveniently) clueless about the behaviors their male friends engage in.  And second, there is the issue that this conversation is happening on a messageboard that has a history and reputation for driving women away with sexism and harassment. There are, so far as I can tell, no women involved in the discussion at this point. I'm not sure about other women, but that does not give me any confidence that skeptical or SGU-related spaces are safe for me.

 I absolutely agree with the point that knowing someone is never an excuse nor evidence of anything, really, aside from fooling oneself. Men and women both often entirely misjudge their friends and peers. As for sexism here, I don't use this forum enough to attest to any, but I wouldn't be totally surprised. It's everywhere. I'm unsure sexism, however, on the part of "skeptics," is necessarily the reason for the lack of female participants on this forum in particular, and in the "skeptic" community in general. If it is, I think it's not so much sexism within this community, but rather a more innate sexism, subtle or not, in our society and its culture.

 I'm curious, how do you feel this should be handled to your satisfaction? What would you like to see?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on January 20, 2019, 07:21:31 PM
Knowing somebody is never evidence, aside from fooling oneself? That seems rather presumptuous.

Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on January 20, 2019, 08:20:23 PM
With respect, ‘don’t fucking do it or I’ll kick your ass’ is not a policy, and did not prevent the accuser in this case feeling that her complaint fell on deaf ears.  You dismissal of the possibility of the need for a real written policy, for independent investigation of complaints, and for a way of submitting complaints that does not rely on accusers feeling comfortable coming to you with complaints about your brothers and decades-old friend is very troubling. And what, Steve, if someone has a complaint against you? Are they to bring it to you so you can kick your own ass?

To be clear, I’m sure that you are a perfect gentleman and I have no reason to suspect that you have ever or will ever engage in any inappropriate behavior; but I can say the same for my own employer and the non-profit organizations I belong to (some of which have no employees at all)—and they all have written sexual harassment policies and paths for complaining about harassment and inappropriate conduct by their members and leadership. And I do not believe that any of them would have heard such a complaint and failed to follow up with the accuser.

Maybe you feel such things are needless bureaucracy, but there’s a good reason they exist, and I believe that they can help keep people and organizations accountable. And, frankly, you appear to need that.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on January 20, 2019, 08:58:15 PM
This is a very good point. A written, legally-approved sexual harassment policy is probably a good idea for the SGU.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: mindme on January 21, 2019, 08:52:52 AM
I get sexual harassment policies at conventions but that's certainly new to podcasting. Are there any that have one? I don't oppose the idea. I can see a podcast gets so big and the members attain a certain level of "fame" that things can happen. SGU could certainly lead in that regard. I think Dr. N. made it known he won't tolerate fans harassing Rebecca and noted he was quite deaf to their threats of not listening if SGU didn't "fire" her. At the start of their broadcast they used to include marriage proposals to Rebecca in emails they read on air. I remember Dr. N. made it clear the joke was old and they were going to do that anymore. But it doesn't hurt to have a code of conduct if you wear the SGU golf shirt and khakis. The moment someone identifies themselves as a listener (be it at a convention, a coffee shop, a night club...) and engages with you, you're wearing the SGU golf shirt and khakis.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on January 21, 2019, 09:08:54 AM
This is a very good point. A written, legally-approved sexual harassment policy is probably a good idea for the SGU.
For a podcast by 4 old friends and 1 new friend?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 21, 2019, 09:21:38 AM
Isn't the SGU still technically a production of the New England Skeptical Society? I know they aren't part of JREF anymore. If they are associated in a professional way with a larger organization, then I think it'd make sense to just adopt their policy and utilize their procedures for reporting of this kind of thing.

I recognize that the SGU itself is fairly small, but even if it's 100% independent from any other organization, I do think there is a wide gulf of options between handling complaints like this against a Rogue by a familiy member/long time friend and hiring an HR firm to act as a 3rd party. Hell, you could literally just pick someone that both the accusor and accused agree could be impartial and have them handle it free of charge.

I also think listener transparency is important, especially to give other potential victims a chance to come forward and show a pattern of behavior if it exists.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: mindme on January 21, 2019, 12:20:57 PM
This is a very good point. A written, legally-approved sexual harassment policy is probably a good idea for the SGU.
For a podcast by 4 old friends and 1 new friend?

No requirement but if they're making enough in donations that one of them can quit his full time job and work for SGU, the best way to dry up those donations is a raging sex scandal and an admission no one had plan or policy. I think it's a sensible suggestion.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: CarbShark on January 21, 2019, 01:58:47 PM
With respect, ‘don’t fucking do it or I’ll kick your ass’ is not a policy...

I think you're being a little unfair here. He followed that line with "But seriously..." and explained that they do have a policy that's basically the NECSS policy.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on January 21, 2019, 02:45:09 PM
This is a very good point. A written, legally-approved sexual harassment policy is probably a good idea for the SGU.

For a podcast by 4 old friends and 1 new friend?

Yes, if they're interacting with the community and staging productions involving guests and actors.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: arthwollipot on January 21, 2019, 08:35:12 PM
Isn't the SGU still technically a production of the New England Skeptical Society? I know they aren't part of JREF anymore.

They were never part of the JREF. Today, SGU Productions is a Limited Liability Company. Wikipedia still lists it as the official podcast of the NESS.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 21, 2019, 08:51:15 PM
Isn't the SGU still technically a production of the New England Skeptical Society? I know they aren't part of JREF anymore.

They were never part of the JREF. Today, SGU Productions is a Limited Liability Company. Wikipedia still lists it as the official podcast of the NESS.

There was definitely a short period of time where the had tagline of being associated with the JREF in some way and I'm pretty sure Steve sat on their board or something.  I clearly remember an announcement of some sort, though honestly I don't really care enough to dig deep and find it.  We'll just assume I'm correct for the sake of argument and move on :P
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on January 22, 2019, 01:08:57 PM
Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Yeah, I don't fault the way Steve is handling this because from his own social perspective, Evan and his accuser are in very different places.

My inclination from here on the outside is to trust the alleged victim, and that is also my inclination when I know both people, but if a stranger accuses my friend of something, I'm not going to immediately trust the person I've never met. Especially if my friends and me had already been anonymously accused numerous times of all manner of horrible things based on the work we do.

Yes, take the accusation seriously, but don't immediately throw your friend under the bus because a stranger says they did something bad. No, not even if the bad thing was sexual in nature.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 2397 on January 22, 2019, 01:21:59 PM
There was definitely a short period of time where the had tagline of being associated with the JREF in some way and I'm pretty sure Steve sat on their board or something.  I clearly remember an announcement of some sort, though honestly I don't really care enough to dig deep and find it.  We'll just assume I'm correct for the sake of argument and move on :P

I thought their association was basically Randi doing a segment on the podcast.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: random poet on January 22, 2019, 01:23:21 PM
Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Yeah, I don't fault the way Steve is handling this because from his own social perspective, Evan and his accuser are in very different places.

My inclination from here on the outside is to trust the alleged victim, and that is also my inclination when I know both people, but if a stranger accuses my friend of something, I'm not going to immediately trust the person I've never met. Especially if my friends and me had already been anonymously accused numerous times of all manner of horrible things based on the work we do.

Yes, take the accusation seriously, but don't immediately throw your friend under the bus because a stranger says they did something bad. No, not even if the bad thing was sexual in nature.
The level of disinformation and people talking out of their asses in this thread is just brutal.

This person is not a stranger on the internet. She is a long-time friend of all three brothers and Evan, to various degrees.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Quetzalcoatl on January 22, 2019, 01:30:52 PM
Isn't the SGU still technically a production of the New England Skeptical Society? I know they aren't part of JREF anymore.

They were never part of the JREF. Today, SGU Productions is a Limited Liability Company. Wikipedia still lists it as the official podcast of the NESS.

I think Steve said in some interview that originally the podcast was the production of the NESS, intending to replace their written newsletter. But eventually they made the podcast its own thing, independent from the NESS.

I might be wrong, but I don't think that the NESS does anything today other than co-hosting NECSS.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 22, 2019, 05:08:36 PM
Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Yeah, I don't fault the way Steve is handling this because from his own social perspective, Evan and his accuser are in very different places.

My inclination from here on the outside is to trust the alleged victim, and that is also my inclination when I know both people, but if a stranger accuses my friend of something, I'm not going to immediately trust the person I've never met. Especially if my friends and me had already been anonymously accused numerous times of all manner of horrible things based on the work we do.

Yes, take the accusation seriously, but don't immediately throw your friend under the bus because a stranger says they did something bad. No, not even if the bad thing was sexual in nature.
The level of disinformation and people talking out of their asses in this thread is just brutal.

This person is not a stranger on the internet. She is a long-time friend of all three brothers and Evan, to various degrees.

 Is a victim of sexual misconduct/abuse/what have you morally obligated to go public with their accusation? Like, to help prevent potential-future incidents like this from happening? To possibly encourage others with similar experiences to come forward as well? Part of why there's so much misinformation is because we have very little information, unfortunately.

 I also really don't appreciate people playing the "random person on the internet" card. This is an actual person, who apparently has friends here, is I assume an SGU listener (or was) and probably considers herself a skeptic, like everyone else here (for the most part). That's, albeit successful, a way to poison the well and discredit the accuser.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on January 22, 2019, 05:24:28 PM
Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Yeah, I don't fault the way Steve is handling this because from his own social perspective, Evan and his accuser are in very different places.

My inclination from here on the outside is to trust the alleged victim, and that is also my inclination when I know both people, but if a stranger accuses my friend of something, I'm not going to immediately trust the person I've never met. Especially if my friends and me had already been anonymously accused numerous times of all manner of horrible things based on the work we do.

Yes, take the accusation seriously, but don't immediately throw your friend under the bus because a stranger says they did something bad. No, not even if the bad thing was sexual in nature.
The level of disinformation and people talking out of their asses in this thread is just brutal.

This person is not a stranger on the internet. She is a long-time friend of all three brothers and Evan, to various degrees.
And any of us were supposed to know that how, exactly?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 22, 2019, 06:20:17 PM
And any of us were supposed to know that how, exactly?

Well, I don't know her and I knew that from this and other threads where she's participated.  I think the larger point is that when you don't know, you don't just assume and then base your argument off of that because it "feels right."

Is a victim of sexual misconduct/abuse/what have you morally obligated to go public with their accusation? Like, to help prevent potential-future incidents like this from happening? To possibly encourage others with similar experiences to come forward as well? Part of why there's so much misinformation is because we have very little information, unfortunately.

I look at it in a similar way to how I look at people who are persecuted in religious nations for openly talking about evolution; I think the world might be a slightly better place if they did choose to do that thing, but considering they are the only ones who'd have to face the negative (sometimes EXTREMELY negative) backlash, and considering the FAR MORE important part that they are already victims, I feel I have absolutely no place to demand that they do it.  Look at what every person who comes forward with accusations against a public figure has had to face and give up and I just don't see how we, as bystanders, have any right to insist that they have any obligation for them to do anything they don't want to.  Maybe if they were a close personal friend or they directly asked me for my opinion, I might deem to bring it up, but as some rando on the internet, no.  Just no.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Awatsjr on January 22, 2019, 09:19:17 PM
I think we want to give the accuser as much room as possible without just shooting the accused before we know for sure. It's a tough one.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 23, 2019, 12:39:10 AM
And any of us were supposed to know that how, exactly?

Well, I don't know her and I knew that from this and other threads where she's participated.  I think the larger point is that when you don't know, you don't just assume and then base your argument off of that because it "feels right."

Is a victim of sexual misconduct/abuse/what have you morally obligated to go public with their accusation? Like, to help prevent potential-future incidents like this from happening? To possibly encourage others with similar experiences to come forward as well? Part of why there's so much misinformation is because we have very little information, unfortunately.

I look at it in a similar way to how I look at people who are persecuted in religious nations for openly talking about evolution; I think the world might be a slightly better place if they did choose to do that thing, but considering they are the only ones who'd have to face the negative (sometimes EXTREMELY negative) backlash, and considering the FAR MORE important part that they are already victims, I feel I have absolutely no place to demand that they do it.  Look at what every person who comes forward with accusations against a public figure has had to face and give up and I just don't see how we, as bystanders, have any right to insist that they have any obligation for them to do anything they don't want to.  Maybe if they were a close personal friend or they directly asked me for my opinion, I might deem to bring it up, but as some rando on the internet, no.  Just no.

 I don't see the relevance of religious nations and their persecuting. I'm also unsure it's fair to say victims going public demands that they face the consequences alone. Rather, such people gain a Hell of a lot of support. Moreover, this is not a high profile case that's going to attract hundreds of thousands or even millions to hit social media. Most people in this community are somewhat rational. I don't see there being the type of backlash as you imply.

 I know it's a hard thing to talk about, but if one disclosing information that may prevent future incidents similar to the one at hand from happening, in my mind, might morally require disclosure. That's my thinking.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 23, 2019, 02:39:16 AM
My thinking is that it's easy to say that from our position so we should probably just not go there.  At least not in a manner that makes it clear we are referring to a specific instance and person as I think it's not worth it to risk piling on a victim by telling them they are not responding to being victimized correctly.  Again, it's a different matter if I know someone personally and they've confided in me the details of what happened, and even moreso if they've asked for my advice or perspective.  Being some guy on the internet though does not put me in that position though and I'm not going there. 

As for religious persecution, I was thinking of a case years ago where a man in a Muslim nation was forced to recant evolution or face violence against him and his family so he did.  Do we need fearless people in countries like that, not backing down from persecution?  Absolutely, if everyone backed down because it was dangerous to not do so, nothing would change.  I cannot bring myself to say that that person shouldn't have backed down though as I'm not in his situation and I'm not risking my family or myself to say it. 

In terms of the backlash in this case; no, it's not likely to rival what someone like Blassey-Ford faced and still faces in the least, but you've been living in a cage if you think that the risk isn't real of getting creeps and assholes coming out of the woodwork and finding her.  Maybe not from this forum, but if it were public and her name was on it, all it would take would be one post on a prominent atheist blog (Think PZ Meyers or something) and I would be shocked if she remained unscathed.  As for the support public accusers also get, I can't speak on their behalf, but I would imagine that no amount of support, no matter how good it makes you feel, would offset receiving even one death threat or the like. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 23, 2019, 04:25:02 AM
 I don't for a second believe this person wouldn't receive a highly negative, offensive and possibly threatening response after coming forward, hypothetically. I agree with you totally in that regard as well as it being easy for me to nonchalantly post on a forum that someone put their life, really, in the spotlight. However, I really don't like how this panned out. The few responses from Steve will be, likely, the only result we will find here in this situation. That really bothers me, because I am inclined to believe the accuser, and I love this podcast so very much, so it's obviously troubling me. I'd like to see some resolve. A few posts from the podcast host defending his friend who may or may not be a creep feels like sweeping this under the rug. I do understand there realistically isn't much to work with, due to a lack of any hard evidence nor specific witness testimony.

 At the very least, as several others are suggesting, there ought to be a sexual harassment policy. At the least. Lastly, I'd like to apologise for being a dick about this and disrespecting the person whose experience this has prompted. It wasn't my place to say much more than emailing Steve to alert him of this. Truly sorry.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 23, 2019, 05:57:09 AM
However Steve and the other Rogues respond to this or fail to respond to this is on them, and on them alone.  There's more than enough from Steve in this thread for you to form a reasonable opinion.  It's not the responsibility of a victim of sexual assault to start a campaign against them just so that we all can have more information to support or not support them. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on January 23, 2019, 07:57:14 AM
Coming out about sexual harassment or assault is a lot like coming out about sexuality or transgender or anything else: it's helpful to others and to society for more people to be open about these things, but it can come at great personal cost and outsiders are in no position to demand that people be any more out than they're comfortable with.

And in particular neither the victim nor any of the Rogues have any obligation to the rest of us in this thread to be more open here about any of the details than they already have been.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 23, 2019, 09:43:58 AM
 You're both correct. Forgive me for so derailing this thread. I truly feel like an ass. I wasn't thinking and considering properly. Again, sorry.

 Anyhoo...

 I'd stop listening to the SGU if they endorsed a blatantly pseudoscientific product or service, most likely via podcast ads.

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on January 23, 2019, 09:53:56 AM
Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Yeah, I don't fault the way Steve is handling this because from his own social perspective, Evan and his accuser are in very different places.

But that is exactly the problem in this and in so many other situations of sexual harassment and assault: people believing and trusting their friends over their accusers.  Which on a personal level is understandable, but is not acceptable.  That's why policies and procedures need to be in place, and why investigation by neutral third parties can be essential when there's a conflict of interest.  It may be understandable that the SGU failed on this one, but it can't be tolerated, and Steve's dismissal of the idea that he can't just wing it when evaluating allegations against his friends and family do not give me hope that that's going to change.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: brilligtove on January 23, 2019, 11:11:07 AM
Even when it's the difference between trusting somebody you've know very well for many years, versus an accusation on an Internet message board from an anonymous person whom you don't know at all?
Yeah, I don't fault the way Steve is handling this because from his own social perspective, Evan and his accuser are in very different places.

But that is exactly the problem in this and in so many other situations of sexual harassment and assault: people believing and trusting their friends over their accusers.  Which on a personal level is understandable, but is not acceptable.  That's why policies and procedures need to be in place, and why investigation by neutral third parties can be essential when there's a conflict of interest.  It may be understandable that the SGU failed on this one, but it can't be tolerated, and Steve's dismissal of the idea that he can't just wing it when evaluating allegations against his friends and family do not give me hope that that's going to change.

Part of the context here is that SGU Productions is a very small operation, not a medium or large corporation or government agency. In small orgs people must wear many hats, even when that means an apparent conflict of interest, because there are not enough humans for specialization. There is no neutral third party at hand in the HR dept because there is no HR Dept. I bet Steve would agree with you that this is not an ideal situation, because it is not an ideal situation. They don't have ideal money, time, or staff to do this 'correctly'.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Awatsjr on January 23, 2019, 11:33:10 AM
From this thread, I am starting to think this is the beginning of the end. Once this gets off the forum there is no way to manage the damage. It will get off the forum.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on January 23, 2019, 03:45:35 PM
This person is not a stranger on the internet. She is a long-time friend of all three brothers and Evan, to various degrees.

If that's true, then I was under a mistaken impression that the alleged events were said to have happened in a public place and the Rogues did not personally know her. I apologize for making a false assumption.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 24, 2019, 06:25:15 AM
Steve,

I presume since you haven't been in here for the last almost week that you're done talking about Evan.  While I can't say I'm thrilled about that and do believe there's more to discuss, I can't force you so I'll just move on.  Would you care to comment on the SGU using the same lawyer who's representing Alex Jones in defense of his creating probably the most disgusting conspiracy theory I've ever heard of?  Also, why you had him on your show for a completely friendly chat where it seemed like you all were very friendly?  To be clear, I'm not accusing you of anything, it just raised my eyebrow quite a bit when I learned about Randazza's career and not just who he's chosen to defend in court (I can accept defending horrible people to uphold a legal principle) but how he has defended them, going far beyond passionately making legal arguments and almost defending them on a personal basis.  It should be noted, that from the very beginning of this discussion on this forum, I've maintained that I know literally nothing about the process behind hiring a lawyer and acknowledge that there are likely an inordinate amount of reasons for why Randazza might have been the best choice for you; I just wanted it addressed.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on January 24, 2019, 09:18:28 AM
Steve,

I presume since you haven't been in here for the last almost week that you're done talking about Evan.  While I can't say I'm thrilled about that and do believe there's more to discuss, I can't force you so I'll just move on.  Would you care to comment on the SGU using the same lawyer who's representing Alex Jones in defense of his creating probably the most disgusting conspiracy theory I've ever heard of?  Also, why you had him on your show for a completely friendly chat where it seemed like you all were very friendly?  To be clear, I'm not accusing you of anything, it just raised my eyebrow quite a bit when I learned about Randazza's career and not just who he's chosen to defend in court (I can accept defending horrible people to uphold a legal principle) but how he has defended them, going far beyond passionately making legal arguments and almost defending them on a personal basis.  It should be noted, that from the very beginning of this discussion on this forum, I've maintained that I know literally nothing about the process behind hiring a lawyer and acknowledge that there are likely an inordinate amount of reasons for why Randazza might have been the best choice for you; I just wanted it addressed.

I have a very vague memory (possibly erroneous) that he commented that when you are taken to court, you want the lawyer best able to defend you, regardless of any other considerations.

My own view is that lawyers are so completely devoid of ethics or principles that finding an honest one is vanishingly unlikely. One looks for the most ruthless one who is competent to make the most effective case.

(My situation was different because I actually had committed the crime in question and I wanted to make a moral argument that my action was justified, not a legal argument that I was innocent.)

Maybe Steve chose Randazza because he regarded him as the most ruthless lawyer he could get. Maybe Steve recognized that honesty and integrity are actually defects when you are being defended in court.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: heyalison on January 24, 2019, 10:09:46 AM
Maybe Steve... Maybe Steve...

Maybe let Steve respond instead of jumping to defense with your hypotheticals? The questions weren't aimed at you.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on January 24, 2019, 10:40:02 PM
Maybe Steve... Maybe Steve...

Maybe let Steve respond instead of jumping to defense with your hypotheticals? The questions weren't aimed at you.

I was commenting on what I remember Steve saying about his hiring of Randazza to defend him in the lawsuit, in response to Eternally Learning’s post asking Steve to explain his choice. This being a public forum open to anyone, I was pointing out that Steve (IIRC) did indeed explain his reason.

If Eternally Learning is annoyed by my answering his or her question he or she can say so.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 24, 2019, 11:41:21 PM
I was commenting on what I remember Steve saying about his hiring of Randazza to defend him in the lawsuit, in response to Eternally Learning’s post asking Steve to explain his choice. This being a public forum open to anyone, I was pointing out that Steve (IIRC) did indeed explain his reason.

If Eternally Learning is annoyed by my answering his or her question he or she can say so.

Well, I wasn't trying to pile on as I don't think it's a huge deal, but I had the same impression from your post that heyalison did.  Sounded less like referring to something Steve had said and more like trying to posit various possible explanations that could be the case.  Yes, I recognize you said both things, but the emphasis appeared to be on the latter as trying to confirm the former.  I also might have been overlooking your vague recollection because my own recollection is that it was you saying that in the various Randazza threads already and I was kind of assuming you just mis-remembered.  Again, not a big deal, but that discussion has already been had between members of this forum in this and other threads.  Steve stopped by, and I wanted to hear something from the horse's mouth rather than conjecture and hypotheticals from those not involved.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on January 25, 2019, 03:24:48 AM
 Steve hired a real piece of shit. He did not have to hire said piece of shit. He did and he paid this piece of shit. I don't see how that's tenable in the slightest, but surely Steve does little to no wrong. If he does it is entirely unintended. And so there must be a completely innocent, possibly necessary reason even for it (the guy's the best in these kinds of cases, c'mon).
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on January 25, 2019, 09:39:40 AM
Steve is human like anyone else. He puts himself forward publicly to promote something all or most of us believe in, which is critical thinking and evidence, and in so doing takes a hit for this cause. That deserves a measure of respect. I really thought he’d said on the show that he hired Randazza because he was the best available lawyer to win the case. Perhaps I got carried away in my post and went beyond that, which would be nothing new for me.

His handling of allegations of sexual misconduct is a serious matter. In my opinion, hiring an a-hole lawyer to defend him against an a-hole scammer in a case that could have wiped him out is not that big a deal, considering how completely broken our whole legal system is.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on January 25, 2019, 10:47:10 AM
I don't fault Steve for hiring an a-hole lawyer to represent him in court, you hire the best lawyer you can, I do fault him for giving that a-hole a platform.   And it could have some bearing on how the SGU handles sexual misconduct charges against their members. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on January 25, 2019, 12:05:38 PM
you hire the best lawyer you can

That phrase is a nonsensical thought terminating cliche that assumes the anticedent as a premise.  A total tautology that I think makes people think less about the details at hand.

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on January 25, 2019, 12:21:07 PM
you hire the best lawyer you can

That phrase is a nonsensical thought terminating cliche that assumes the anticedent as a premise.  A total tautology that I think makes people think less about the details at hand.


What? Why?  A cliche sure, I fail to see how its either nonsensical or a tautology. 
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on January 25, 2019, 12:49:29 PM
It's use as a defense has in its base assumption that he did hire the best lawyer that he could.  A premise I do not grant - neither specifically or from a general welfare of the SGU as an ongoing concern.  And beyond that, I deny that there even is "the best lawyer" as a concept.  There is a set of lawyers who can do the best they can with the case you bring them, and marginally speaking, there is no real difference.

That is the tautology.  You have to hire the best lawyer you can.  How do we know they are the best lawyer?  Because you have to hire the best lawyer you can!

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Ah.hell on January 25, 2019, 01:48:51 PM
Well, disagree.  I suppose I could say, you hire the best lawyer you can given your resources and necessarily limited knowledge base give a broad range of concerns the most significant of which is winning the case. 

So, perhaps there was an unstated major premise but it is not a tautology. 

You hire the best lawyer you can. How do you know they are the best lawyer?  Well, you really can't but you do the best you can.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on January 25, 2019, 02:54:13 PM
Last month, HuffPo ran a long-form piece about Randazza. HuffPo isn't exactly the gold standard for journalism, but this piece is worth a read if you have time:
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/alex-jones-lawyer-marc-randazza_us_5c1c283ae4b08aaf7a86b9e4 (https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/alex-jones-lawyer-marc-randazza_us_5c1c283ae4b08aaf7a86b9e4)
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on January 25, 2019, 03:50:48 PM
Well, disagree.  I suppose I could say, you hire the best lawyer you can given your resources and necessarily limited knowledge base give a broad range of concerns the most significant of which is winning the case. 

So, perhaps there was an unstated major premise but it is not a tautology. 

You hire the best lawyer you can. How do you know they are the best lawyer?  Well, you really can't but you do the best you can.

That is true if you have not yet hired the lawyer, yes.  But when you use it past tense to describe a person who they already hired, it excuses the action post hoc, by assuming that they hired the best they could.  We do not know that, and no evidence is offered to support it.  Therefore it is circular reasoning.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on January 25, 2019, 04:58:00 PM
Well, disagree.  I suppose I could say, you hire the best lawyer you can given your resources and necessarily limited knowledge base give a broad range of concerns the most significant of which is winning the case. 

So, perhaps there was an unstated major premise but it is not a tautology. 

You hire the best lawyer you can. How do you know they are the best lawyer?  Well, you really can't but you do the best you can.

That is true if you have not yet hired the lawyer, yes.  But when you use it past tense to describe a person who they already hired, it excuses the action post hoc, by assuming that they hired the best they could.  We do not know that, and no evidence is offered to support it.  Therefore it is circular reasoning.

Randazza is an ass, but at the time he was reasonably the guy with the right expertise for it, not just for them, but they also needed to take it a certain kind of seriously because that case was important for potentially setting precedent what happens in court for people getting sued in defamation lawsuits for calling out misinformation peddlers.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: PANTS! on January 25, 2019, 05:38:31 PM
Well, disagree.  I suppose I could say, you hire the best lawyer you can given your resources and necessarily limited knowledge base give a broad range of concerns the most significant of which is winning the case. 

So, perhaps there was an unstated major premise but it is not a tautology. 

You hire the best lawyer you can. How do you know they are the best lawyer?  Well, you really can't but you do the best you can.

That is true if you have not yet hired the lawyer, yes.  But when you use it past tense to describe a person who they already hired, it excuses the action post hoc, by assuming that they hired the best they could.  We do not know that, and no evidence is offered to support it.  Therefore it is circular reasoning.

Randazza is an ass, but at the time he was reasonably the guy with the right expertise for it, not just for them, but they also needed to take it a certain kind of seriously because that case was important for potentially setting precedent what happens in court for people getting sued in defamation lawsuits for calling out misinformation peddlers.

OK - I get that.  And, you made a non-circular argument for using him.  Thank you. 

I mean, I disagree with parts of the argument, but at least you made an argument that was not circular, which is what frustrates me about that phrase.  Now we can at least have a discussion about why or why not Randazza was right for the SGU.  Which I think is in another thread.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 25, 2019, 05:51:36 PM
My understanding is that Randazza has had a certain reputation for defending free speech cases with a fervor and I assume that's why Steve chose him.  Considering he won their case, it's hard to say they chose poorly in terms of his ability.  I don't know when all his bullshit started becoming well know, but from what I gather, he's had a long history of being a scumbag, preceding the SGU taking him on.  I don't particularly think it's incumbent upon them to do a deep dive into a lawyer's past before bringing them on to defend them, just their legal prowess and competence.  That said, once it came to their attention that their lawyer had not just some questionable clients and public statements about them, but some shady legal practices as well, it was incumbent upon them to at least address it and explain why they didn't feel it was appropriate or necessary to get a new lawyer at that time.

Above and beyond that though, is having a chummy conversation with him on the show and actively promoting his practice.  Even worse, is deciding that he should be THE lawyer to work for their skeptic anti-SLAPP fund they proposed (don't know if it ever happened).  If they are going to say that this is basically THE lawyer for all skeptics to use, they really owe it to anyone contributing to and taking advantage of their fund to explain why he is the best choice and why his choices and behavior aren't problematic for all concerned.

ETA: Oh and just to be clear in case someone brings it up, I don't think Randazza's connections are likely any indication of the political or social leanings of Steve or the rest of the show.  I do NOT suspect in the least that Steve and co are secret alt-righters or racists or whatever.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: 6EQUJ5 on January 28, 2019, 02:14:58 PM
Well, disagree.  I suppose I could say, you hire the best lawyer you can given your resources and necessarily limited knowledge base give a broad range of concerns the most significant of which is winning the case. 

So, perhaps there was an unstated major premise but it is not a tautology. 

You hire the best lawyer you can. How do you know they are the best lawyer?  Well, you really can't but you do the best you can.

That is true if you have not yet hired the lawyer, yes.  But when you use it past tense to describe a person who they already hired, it excuses the action post hoc, by assuming that they hired the best they could.  We do not know that, and no evidence is offered to support it.  Therefore it is circular reasoning.

Randazza is an ass, but at the time he was reasonably the guy with the right expertise for it, not just for them, but they also needed to take it a certain kind of seriously because that case was important for potentially setting precedent what happens in court for people getting sued in defamation lawsuits for calling out misinformation peddlers.

OK - I get that.  And, you made a non-circular argument for using him.  Thank you. 

I mean, I disagree with parts of the argument, but at least you made an argument that was not circular, which is what frustrates me about that phrase.  Now we can at least have a discussion about why or why not Randazza was right for the SGU.  Which I think is in another thread.

I don't defend it, he could have been more vetted, but I can understand how, under the stress of the potentially enormous financial effect, if someone advises you that this guy is the best guy for winning the case, it probably doesn't occur you that he could be gross.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: John Albert on January 31, 2019, 07:41:45 PM
With regard to the Alex Jones case, it appears that Randazza is soaking Alex Jones for all he's worth while doing as little actual work as possible. Thus far all he's been doing is filing frivolous continuances and specious motions to forestall the inevitable discovery process.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: The Latinist on January 31, 2019, 08:24:40 PM
It is sadly becoming clear to me that Steve’s intention is to offer platitudes while not committing to any real change of the kind that could prevent or ensure the proper handling of future incidents. I find this incredibly disappointing, and is going to require me to do some hard thinking about my involvement with this site going forward.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Eternally Learning on January 31, 2019, 09:25:22 PM
When On the Media interviewed (https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/defending-indefensible) him about the Alex Jones case, this was Bob Garfield's opening question:

Quote
Your clients are racist, liars, anti-Semites, slanderers. Why are you working for them?

If you are Steve, how does that perception of your lawyer by a reputable show not give you serious pause?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: fuzzyMarmot on February 01, 2019, 12:45:16 AM
It is sadly becoming clear to me that Steve’s intention is to offer platitudes while not committing to any real change of the kind that could prevent or ensure the proper handling of future incidents. I find this incredibly disappointing, and is going to require me to do some hard thinking about my involvement with this site going forward.

I really value your presence and participation in this community, and I hope that you stay involved. Your advocacy for transparency is extremely important to the future of the SGU and its fans.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: mindme on February 01, 2019, 08:27:01 AM
I would be cautious next time I donate to an SGU/SBM libel fund. I'd want to know who the lawyer is first. To use a crazy example, if Hitler is the SGU's lawyer, even though he's the best free speech lawyer on the planet, do you still give him your money?

Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: daniel1948 on February 01, 2019, 09:31:28 AM
It is sadly becoming clear to me that Steve’s intention is to offer platitudes while not committing to any real change of the kind that could prevent or ensure the proper handling of future incidents. I find this incredibly disappointing, and is going to require me to do some hard thinking about my involvement with this site going forward.

I really value your presence and participation in this community, and I hope that you stay involved. Your advocacy for transparency is extremely important to the future of the SGU and its fans.

@The Latinist: I second the above. Even if you decide that you can no longer support the SGU, I would hope you would not stop participating in this forum. I value your input, even when that input is critical of me.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Bill K on February 05, 2019, 05:59:11 PM
It is sadly becoming clear to me that Steve’s intention is to offer platitudes while not committing to any real change of the kind that could prevent or ensure the proper handling of future incidents. I find this incredibly disappointing, and is going to require me to do some hard thinking about my involvement with this site going forward.

While I feel the same way, your input here is invaluable and it would be a total loss to have you leave. Moreover, your involvement on this site isn't necessarily an endorsement of the SGU and its practices (or lack thereof), is it? If you are disappointed with your fellow posters, then I understand completely. I do understand, either way, I suppose I should say.

Although I truly don't know you, I say all of the above with love (that rhymed).
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: mindme on February 06, 2019, 12:42:36 PM
It is sadly becoming clear to me that Steve’s intention is to offer platitudes while not committing to any real change of the kind that could prevent or ensure the proper handling of future incidents. I find this incredibly disappointing, and is going to require me to do some hard thinking about my involvement with this site going forward.

I assumed this site is only distantly related to the SGU. Your input is welcome and I'm sure we've been on the same side of the argument and the opposite sides of some argument and have come away better. But I can't really see not participating in the SGU board as the best way to express your disapproval with the SGU's approach to this topic. Obviously, if you support them financially, stop. Or, in my case, next time they come asking for money for a legal defense fund, I'm going to have some serious questions about the lawyer I'm helping to pay for.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Billzbub on February 06, 2019, 12:51:05 PM
It is sadly becoming clear to me that Steve’s intention is to offer platitudes while not committing to any real change of the kind that could prevent or ensure the proper handling of future incidents. I find this incredibly disappointing, and is going to require me to do some hard thinking about my involvement with this site going forward.

Um, mafia!?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Shibboleth on February 06, 2019, 01:30:41 PM
I wouldn't like it if the members of the SGU did the show in blackface or if they started denying that bigfoot is an ancient alien sent  by Jesus to collect crystals for their psychic powers.
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: bimble on February 06, 2019, 01:50:01 PM
I wouldn't like it if the members of the SGU did the show in blackface

But how would you know*...??

* - live shows not withstanding
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: Shibboleth on February 06, 2019, 02:21:09 PM
I wouldn't like it if the members of the SGU did the show in blackface

But how would you know*...??

* - live shows not withstanding

Am I the only one that watches shows via astral projection?
Title: Re: What would it take for you to stop listening to and/or supporting the SGU?
Post by: gmalivuk on February 11, 2019, 08:30:59 AM
I also value The Latinist's contributions and would like if he stayed.

Personally, I think that in a forum like this, where only a small subsection is actually devoted to discussing the episodes and the rest is here because of the community that those episodes initially brought together, it's not really important that participants continue to keep up with the "source material". As long as someone's willing to discuss skeptical and scientific topics in good faith I don't really care whether they've *ever* listened to the podcast.

(Of course I may be biased as I haven't really listened to this or any podcasts in a long while, and I'm also a moderator of the xkcd forums but I only remember once every week or two that there's also a comic that gets updated every couple days.)