Archive for November, 2021

Skeptics with a K: Episode #316

Mike, Marsh and Alice are joined once again by Emma to talk about the recent decision to recall Colin Pitchfork to prison, and Marsh talks about the recent terrorist attack at the Liverpool Women’s Hospital.

Due to the nature of Colin Pitchfork’s offences, this episode makes occasional references to murder and rape which some listeners may wish to avoid.

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Be Reasonable: Episode #076

Marsh is joined by Stan Shepherd, author of New Flat Earth. In this episode, we talk about Stan’s journey into flat Earth belief, why he believes most flat-earthers are wrong about the moon landing, and the Biblical basis for rejecting the spherical Earth.

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Michael Marshall – Inside the White Rose: an anti-vaxx, Covid conspiracy theory ecosystem

When:  Thursday, November 18th 2021, 7.30pm – 11.00pm

Where: The Casa Bar, 29 Hope Street

When 2020 brought with it a new strain of coronavirus, the world was plunged into confusion and uncertainty. While most people accepted the realities of the virus, little white stickers began to appear in public around the world claiming COVID-19 was a hoax concocted by the governments of the world to instil fear into their people, as a pretext for introducing new, permanent totalitarian laws. The graffiti was part of a co-ordinated grassroots campaign by a group calling itself The White Rose, urging members of the public to join their encrypted messaging channels to learn more about what was really going on.

So that’s what Michael Marshall, full-time skeptical investigator and activist, did. After spending months undercover in the messaging app Telegram, he has reported on the various conspiracy theories spread by the White Rose, and how groups used the Covid crisis to radicalise vaccine hesitant members of the public into a dangerous ecosystem of misinformation and extremism.

Michael Marshall is the Project Director of the Good Thinking Society, Editor of The Skeptic, and President of the Merseyside Skeptics Society. He regularly speaks with proponents of pseudoscience for the Be Reasonable podcast, and presents investigative reporting on the Skeptics with a K podcast.

His work has seen him organising international homeopathy protests, going undercover to expose psychics and quack medics, and co-founding the popular QED conference. He has lectured at universities across the world on the role of the media, and has written for the Guardian, The Times, New Scientist and the New Statesman.

More information:

  • Facebook event >>
  • Meetup.com >>
  • Email >>

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**COVID Security**

This is our first event back in public and we take the threat of COVID very seriously.

Here are some things you could do to help look after yourself and our other attendees (if you like):

• If you have access to a lateral flow test, why not take a test before you join us? If it’s positive for COVID-19, please stay at home.
• If you have new symptoms of COVID-19, even if a lateral flow test is negative – we’d prefer you stay at home. We’ll have other social events in the future that you can join in when you’re feeling better.
• If you feel comfortable and able to wear a mask while moving around the venue then please do wear one. We’ll bring some spares if you’d like to wear one but forgot to bring one.
• We’ll also bring some hand sanitiser that you’re free to use any time you want to.
• Please be respectful of other people’s boundaries. Give each other plenty of space and be considerate. If you need to cough or sneeze, cough into your elbow or a tissue and throw the tissue away before sanitising your hands.

**NHS COVID Pass trial**
For our first event back, we are trialling use of the NHS COVID Pass and we would really appreciate our attendees help in this trial. In order to ready your NHS COVID Pass there are a number of steps you can follow.

1) Download the NHS app on your smartphone. This is a separate app the NHS Covid app. Once you are registered with the NHS app your COVID pass can be viewed under “Get your NHS COVID Pass” – click continue, then domestic. This will show a QR code that we can scan.

2) From the NHS app you can also download a PDF copy or receive a copy by email in case you do not have access to the internet from your smartphone.

3) If you do not wish to install the NHS app, or you do not have a smartphone – you can get a paper copy of your COVID Pass by mail by following this link: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/covid-pass/get-your-covid-pass-letter/ the paper copy will take at least 5 days to arrive.

The COVID Pass will confirm to us that you have either: had two COVID vaccines, had a positive antigen test within the previous 6 months, or that you have conducted a lateral flow test within the preceding 48 hours and the test was negative (for the online COVID pass only). We will not be informed which of these is the case for you.

If you have conducted a lateral flow test in the 48 hours before the event, you will need to register it with the NHS. To do so, you can follow the instructions at this link: https://www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result

Please try to make sure you have your NHS COVID Pass ready to scan before you enter the venue so we can minimise delays to entry.

When we scan your NHS COVID Pass, we will retain no information from you – we are only using it as a pre-event check.

Thank you for helping us keep our attendees safe!

 

 

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Skeptics with a K: Episode #315

Alice looks into Apitherapy, the practice of using bee stings for therapeutic purposes, and Marsh talks about COP26 and the ‘charitable’ lobbying efforts of climate change denial. Meanwhile Mike gets excited about the new series of Doctor Who.

Mixed and edited by Morgan Clarke.

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