Speakers announced for SkeptiCamp Monterey 2018

SEASIDE, Calif. — Short presentations on topics ranging from marketing myths to the importance of science activism will all be part of the 4th annual SkeptiCamp Monterey, a day to connect with others in the local skeptic community and to learn more about critical thinking, skepticism, science and related topics.

The conference on Saturday, Jan. 6, is free and open to the public, although an RSVP through either Eventbrite or Facebook is recommended due to space considerations.

SkeptiCamp Monterey 2018 will be held at Seaside Community Center, 220 Coe Ave., Seaside, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event is co-hosted by Monterey County Skeptics and the Humanist Association of the Monterey Bay Area.

Presentations will take a skeptical look at a variety of topics. Speakers this year include CSU-Monterey Bay professor Dr. Jill Yamashita, who will talk about her research into the unreliability of eyewitness accounts. Others include author/activist Mark Edward of Los Angeles, whose book “Psychic Blues” exposes the tricks that so-called “psychics” use to convince people they have special powers.

Others include Bay Area Skeptics Jay Diamond and Leonard Tramiel. Diamond will discuss “MADMYTHS: Marketing Myths and Why Skeptics Must Embrace Persuasion.” Tramiel will talk about “Skepticism and Atheism: How Are They Related and Why Should Skeptics Care.”

Also on the roster for the day are science activist Susan Gerbic of Salinas, political blogger Glenn Church of North Monterey County, Monterey Peninsula writer Arlen Grossman, and “Data Skeptic” Kyle Polich of Los Angeles, who regularly blogs and podcasts on statistics, big data, artificial intelligence and data science. A complete schedule can be found at the event’s Facebook page.

SkeptiCamp Monterey begins with a casual get-together on Friday, Jan. 5, 6:30-9:30 p.m. at Seaside Embassy Suites restaurant, 1441 Canyon Del Rey Blvd. This no-host meet-and-greet is a chance to get to know other skeptics and learn what skepticism is all about.

At the main event on Saturday, Jan. 6, sandwiches, chips and drinks will be available for a donation during the lunch break.

SkeptiCamp is free, but space is limited, so an RSVP requested by emailing MCSkeptics@gmail.com or through Eventbrite, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/skepticamp-monterey-2018-tickets-41069053645. For information, call Susan Gerbic, (831) 214-9466. Donations on the day of the event are appreciated to defray costs.

Skepticism is a worldwide movement that promotes critical thinking and evaluation of pseudoscience and paranormal claims based on scientific evidence rather than faith. Celebrities such as James Randi, Richard Dawkins, and Penn & Teller work to promote skeptical thinking; on the grassroots level, local skeptics groups come together for the same purpose.

The Monterey County Skeptics meet monthly to discuss, debate and delve into these matters: www.meetup.com/monterey-county-skeptics.


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