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votes
0answers
89 views

2018: a year in moderation

It's New Year's Day in Stack Exchange land... A distinguishing characteristic of these sites is how they are moderated: We designed the Stack Exchange network engine to be mostly self-regulating, in ...
6
votes
0answers
70 views

Link to submit moderation election nomination is invisible

As per the title, I had a hard time finding it. The link should be underlined as everywhere else.
6
votes
4answers
149 views

About the use of images

Over the last few days, a very small but very vocal minority of users has been leading a crusade against the "unprofessional" use of pictures in posts. As a result of their crusade, many users are ...
6
votes
7answers
128 views

Community Promotion Ads - 2016

It's 2016 now, and we've made some changes to the sidebar size. As such, we can now restart the Community Promotion Ads for 2016! Keep in mind, we have updated some of the guidelines compared to ...
5
votes
1answer
137 views

Let's clean up the post notices!

As you know, we annotate posts with "citation-needed" notices when they don't reference any sources. What you may not know, is that there is a list of such posts available here, visible to everyone! ...
5
votes
1answer
158 views

Burninating the conspiracy theories tag

I always disliked the conspiracy theories tag. First of all, it's a meta-tag but secondly, it's pejorative and slanted. As Neil deGrasse Tyson put it so well on Twitter, Conspiracy theorists are ...
5
votes
3answers
248 views

Does SE.Skeptics specifically require “scientific” references?

I'm a new user on this site. I recently provided an answer and linked to several online articles. However, my answer was downvoted 2x because two people didn't like that I used a non "scientific ...
5
votes
2answers
105 views

Potentially libellous questions

I recently submitted an edit for a question asking "Is [medical technique] a hoax?" changing it to "Is [medical technique] efficacious?" Calling it a hoax suggests that the proponents are ...
5
votes
3answers
100 views

Tags for woo “celebrities”?

Should we allow/create tags for well known Woo-woos and snake-oil salesmen? jenny-mccarthy david-icke jim-humble Etc. They all have a proven track record in unsubstantiated claims and being able to ...
5
votes
1answer
161 views

What is meant by the word “scientific” in this site's “scientific skepticism”?

What does "scientific" mean in the context of this site? A commitment to the scientific method as per this entry in wikipedia? updated Okay, now that I'm in the right place ... how much of the past ...
5
votes
1answer
175 views

What makes a good “the answer is unknown” answer?

In some cases the status of a claim is objectively unknown, e.g. if research indicates that we definitively do not know the answer, or if research leads to no information one way or the other (these ...
4
votes
3answers
155 views

Change the 'unclear what you're asking' text

After this answer and its subsequent comments, I propose a change to the "Why should this question be closed?" dialog, which is currently as follows: unclear what you're asking Please clarify ...
4
votes
1answer
98 views

Is Skeptics only for pseudoscience, or for pseudohistory and the like?

Most of the questions here are about pseudoscience, such as homeopathy and anti-vaccination. Are other forms of fringe theories, such as Gavin Menzies' 1421 on-topic?
4
votes
1answer
51 views

Do we need an alt-medicine and a medicine tag?

I think that alt-medicines is to medicine what anti-vaccination is to vaccines. Since we don't allow tags describing a position, shouldn't we make the [alt-medicines] tag a synonyms of the [medicine] ...
4
votes
3answers
290 views

Citing holocaust denial sites in answers is regarded as acceptable by moderators

This answer cites the Institute for Historical Review, a holocaust denial organisation. I flagged the answer, and got declined - a moderator reviewed your flag, but found no evidence to support it ...
4
votes
1answer
220 views

Has the definition of a “theoretical answer” been revised?

On reading this excellent answer it made me wonder why that answer is allowed but this one was deleted. Why is one "theoretical", and rapidly deleted, and the other not? Or has something changed about ...
4
votes
1answer
83 views

Implied/Conflated Claims from politicians

I've noticed that politicians have a tendency to conflate several issues or at least imply things without technically claiming them. My question for meta is, are these claims strong enought to be ...
4
votes
1answer
56 views

Links invisible on post notices

The post notices with a link look like this: The words "Good Subjective, Bad Subjective" are a link but it looks exactly like the rest of the text except on hover. Also, see this closed question for ...
4
votes
1answer
229 views

List of bad tags

This question contains a list of tags that are not useful and should be removed from any question should they appear again. This applies mostly to so-called meta tags, see also The Death of Meta Tags ...
4
votes
1answer
97 views

Has “Skepticism” been defined?

On the recent closing of a question, moderator Fabian wrote the following: "Medical questions unrelated to skepticism are off-topic here, I'm closing this question therefore." Firstly, I agree that ...
4
votes
4answers
135 views

Should we allow “name” tags?

I am convinced that full name tags like l-ron-hubbard or andrew-wakefield should be discuraged because they really don't help categorize the site. Questions should be about claims and not people. ...
3
votes
6answers
311 views

How do you skeptically investigate Hitler's religion?

I ran across the following question on main: https://skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/1821/hitlers-religion On one hand, the question is formally a skeptical question, on the other how can one ...
3
votes
1answer
108 views

How pedantic should we be?

When I've come across a question that either requires or makes certain assumptions, I generally request the OP to clarify their question so everyone is on the same page. For instance, a recent ...
3
votes
6answers
148 views

Our tags need your attention!

Skeptics, our tags need your attention! There are a few tags which are vastly misused and need cleaning up. These tags are quite invariably being used as meta-tags or have such a generic meaning that ...
3
votes
1answer
230 views

What constitutes non-trivial analysis of available data?

If a question asks whether A is bigger than B, and someone posts reliable sources that provide the size of A and the size of B, and says that since the source for A provides a larger number than the ...
3
votes
7answers
367 views

What is the criteria for an unacceptable image?

I am not having much luck getting my intentions across here on meta so I will make this ridiculously short. This is related to the Unprofessionalism bullet-point in my longwinded answer to the 90 day ...
3
votes
4answers
162 views

Are applied mathematics questions on-topic?

This question currently has 2 votes to close. Hopefully I'm not asking this question prematurely, but are we to consider all future applied mathematics questions off-topic or on-topic? I see where ...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

Would the question “Did Einstein actually say X?” be on-topic here?

Would it be on-topic to ask here: Did Einstein actually say: "Make everything as simple as possible, but no simpler?" By my reading of the FAQ, I would think not. Skeptiks is about: ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Is Penn Teller's Bullshit a reliable source?

I love James Randi, The Skeptics Guide and Penn Point about as much as Bullshit!. And I love how on the last one they pick very heated topics to mostly defend their own (and maybe just apparently) ...
2
votes
1answer
68 views

Design Bug: Preview of links mismatches actual links

If you type in a link in the Edit box, the preview pane shows the link in bold. When you save it, the actual site shows it underlined.
2
votes
3answers
177 views

Should we allow unreferenced answers as comments?

Lately, I have increasingly seen this behavior on the main site: some users, especially high reputation ones, posts pseudo-answers as comments on questions. Is this something that we want, as a ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

What qualifies as “extended discussion” needing moving to chat?

After flagging this answer (I flagged the answer, not the comments, and wasn't complaining about the comments), the comments were moved into chat with the message "Comments are not for extended ...
2
votes
4answers
161 views

Is it ok to ask a question and provide your own answer?

Is it ok to ask a question that you already know the answer to, or plan to research the answer to? The only discussion I found was old, and possiblly out of date. Newer comments in multiple threads ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

Revisiting the “no theoretical answers” rule: how does Skeptics SE define “theory”?

Just now an answer of mine was closed with reference to the "No theoretical answers" rule. I have a big problem with that, because this implicates that Skeptics SE operate on the on the "It's just a ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

is Skeptics for specific claims only, or about learning about skepticism?

I didn't see a tag for research or other terms I tried. Can I ask how do you research claims via search engines if the sites I know about like Snopes doesn't have it? I won't go into it further ...
1
vote
2answers
90 views

How can I delete my Skeptics account?

I have other S.E. profiles, so I only want this one gone. Without going into detail, I feel like this is not the place for me and I want out.
1
vote
5answers
315 views

Closing of questions which don't clarify what they are asking for

The question about correlation between penis size and race does not clarify what is meant by 'race'. Such vague questions need clarification, or should be closed. It the answer doesn't clarify the ...
1
vote
3answers
240 views

Are allegations of infamous crimes off topic for Skeptics?

This question was inspired by Did Michael Jackson sexually abuse children? as some moderators discussed the question with the OP in comments and suggested that perhaps Skeptics can not replace the ...
1
vote
3answers
128 views

Should questions try to be unbiased? [duplicate]

Should questions be unbiased? For example, is it ok to have "and I know it is" in Lifehacker insists it's fake, and I know it is, but I figured it'd be a useful one to have someone explain the ...
1
vote
3answers
176 views

Policy on profanity

I just noticed that we have no meta question about profanity yet. We have strict rules about attacks or insults on other users here. But what about general use of profanity and insults against other ...
1
vote
3answers
121 views

In what manner are/n't questions about Logic or Logical Fallacies on-topic?

Culling the definition questions on Area 51, I just noticed there are no questions involving logic or fallacies thereof. Nonetheles, we have one. Should questions involving logic be considered on ...
0
votes
2answers
44 views

Are citations to whole books which don't list page numbers acceptable as references?

Clearly, the gold standard in citing printed material exists, and that gold standard includes a page # for where the citation is taken from (especially large books). ... provide a specific pointer ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

Is creating a figure based on referenced data original research?

I was thinking about creating and adding a figure to one of my answers. I'd use data from a referenced source to create that figure, which would probably take the form of a bar chart or something ...
0
votes
3answers
85 views

Posting etiquette

This is my first time posting on skeptics.se, I am a frequent poster on math.se, I was wondering if I could get more information on why the question is considered off-topic? And how(if) it can be ...
0
votes
2answers
64 views

How do we handle new data

This question on cellphones and cancer was recently asked. Now it's clearly a duplicate of this question, which was very well answered and accepted, and ordinarily the new one should be closed as a ...
-1
votes
1answer
66 views

When should a closed question be reopened?

The closure rate of questions is seem as a problem by some on Skeptics.SE. The answer usually given (link usually and given to past questions) is that a question being closed is a "pause" state, so ...
-1
votes
3answers
136 views

Can we adjust the privilege/reputation levels?

I understand the site has gone live and so the reputation needed for privleges is in line with the other SE sites. My concern is that the vast majority of the users on the site do not have anywhere ...
-3
votes
1answer
124 views

How about a firm minimum threshold for notability?

This question was originally just idle curiosity, without any reference to a claim being made. I flagged this as non-notable, and 3yahoo answers were added as references to the claim, which seems to ...
-8
votes
4answers
610 views

Deletion of deep hot biosphere answer

On this question: Is there a deep, hot biosphere? , I provided an answer which was essentially a summary of Thomas Gold's book "The Deep Hot Biosphere", which I have just read. The answer was upvoted, ...
32
votes
3answers
472 views

How much trust can we put in an answer on a website where people vote on the answers?

For example, imagine Skeptics StackExchange existed 500 years ago and the question was asked: "Is the heliocentric model correct?" I'd imagine that the answer "No it's false (and here's my reasoning)...

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