Bei unseren amerikanischen Freunden vom CSI ist ein großer Bericht über die SkepKon in Köln erschienen.
Susan Gerbic hat mit der Erstteilnehmerin Annika Merkelbach über ihre Eindrücke gesprochen.
Merkelbach: The first day started with Skeptical, which is an exciting science event. It started on Thursday with a comedic practical example of a double-blind study. Then Norbert Aust and Natalie Grams of Informationsnetzwerk Homöopathie opened the big 50 000 € challenge. If you can guess the content of a few homeopathy meds that have their tags removed they will give you the money (about 58,000 US Dollars). And yes, the money actually exists!
Then Ralf Neugebauer talked about a very specific German topic, the “Reichsbürger” movement. They are people who reject modern Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany, which seems just harmless and confusing at first but can actually lead to almost extremist outcomes. “Reichsbürger” ideas also weaken trust in any kind of society or democratic government of Germany, which, given our history, is equally dangerous.“
Gerbic: And how did you like the second day?
It was equally fascinating! Marius Raab and Alexander Fischer discussed the philosophy behind conspiracies and how we as skeptics have to be skeptical in what we believe, too. Michael Marquardt explained conspiracy theories out of a scientific, historic, psychological, and philosophical perspective. He was also referring to alternative facts and fake news; meanwhile discussing several current topics.
Bernd Harder demonstrated how a conspiracy theory can start with a playful piece about an invented conspiracy. His presentation was hilarious while at the same time very disconcerting, because he was showing actual conspiracy theories about the skeptical movement. It was so fascinating that this part of the conference was also one of my highlights.“
Gerbic: I’m also curious about your thoughts about what the issues in Germany are that we as a skeptic community should be focusing on; any insight?
Merkelbach: I can’t really generalize here, because Germany is very diverse. I think the issues we face here are mostly similar to challenges elsewhere. Something that’s quite deeply ingrained in German history or medicine is homeopathy. Samuel Hahnemann was German, so homeopathy really has a different standing here. That’s why I think that the people of Informationsnetzwerk Homöopathie along with GWUP are doing such an important job of informing about homeopathy and why it (doesn’t) work.“
- The SkepKon Report with Susan Gerbic, CSI am 12. Juni 2018
- Skeptical: Busting the Bullshit, hpd am 18. Mai 2018
- SkepKon 2018: Verschwörungstheorien und Psychologie, hpd am 6. Juni 2018
- Skepkon-Video: Der Mythos vom satanisch-rituellen Missbrauch, GWUP-Blog am 13. Juni 2018
- Video: Der Bullshit-Buster Axel Ebert beim „Skeptical“ in Köln, GWUP-Blog am 2. Juni 2018
- Skeptical-Video mit „Dr. Anna“: Die Impfgegnerbewegung in den sozialen Medien, GWUP-Blog am 21. Mai 2018
- Video: Dr. Norbert Aust erklärt die mit 50 000 Euro dotierte Homöopathie-Challenge, GWUP-Blog am 16. Mai 2018