James Randi Educational Foundation

James Randi Educational Foundation
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JREF News And Updates

May 2012

Photo of D.J. GrotheJoin Team Randi!

Everywhere we look these days, we see science and reason under attack. From the mediums who say they talk to our dead loved ones to the immunization denialists who put our public health at risk, from the faith healers who do magic tricks in the name of God to the alternative medicine hucksters who beguile believers to turn away from real medical cures, from the ghost hunters to the ancient aliens — the flood of bullshit largely goes unabated.

This is why we want you to help us reach our goal of just 500 new members by May 31!

The James Randi Educational Foundation is fighting back against the fakers and the charlatans and ramping up our efforts across the board — but we can’t do it alone. So we are looking for 500 new JREF members this month to commit to helping us with our work. This is just a small percentage of the subscribers to our email list, and we think it is a very realistic goal for the month of May. But we won’t achieve it without your decision to join right now — please become a member today.

Yes, our cultural competitors, the purveyors of harmful nonsense and “woo woo,” may be surging in popularity right now and they may have large media backers like broadcast networks and media outlets. But we have three important things they don’t have:

  1. scientific facts and evidence-based reason;
  2. regard for the well-being of others, that people don’t get harmed and scammed by paranormal and pseudoscientific lies; and,
  3. an army of concerned and dedicated skeptics like yourself, from all walks of life. 

In other words, we have Team Randi.TEAM RANDI t-shirt

Join our fight against the fakers and become a JREF member today!

With your membership contribution, you’ll not only receive the new Team Randi t-shirt as our gift to you. You will also qualify for a $50 discount when you register for The Amazing Meeting 2012, our four day celebration of skepticism and science in Las Vegas, and the largest gathering of skeptics in the world. And you will receive free or discounted admission to other regional JREF events, like our regional workshops, throughout the calendar year.

But most importantly, your support will help us further educate students about critical thinking and the paranormal, support grassroots campaigns, and take on corporations and public figures that promote dangerous pseudoscientific nonsense.

None of which is possible without members like you.



President, James Randi Educational Foundation

PS -- It only takes a couple minutes to become a JREF member today, and your help is vital as we work to expand our efforts fighting the purveyors of harmful nonsense. Please become a JREF member now and support our unique work.

horizontal separatorThe Amaz!ng Meeting 2012

July 12-15, 2012
South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa
Las Vegas, NV

The Amaz!ng Meeting (TAM) is the must-attend annual celebration of science, skepticism and critical thinking. People from all over the world come to TAM each year to share learning, laughs and the skeptical perspective with their fellow skeptics and a host of distinguished guest speakers including James Randi, Penn and Teller, Carol Tavris, Lawrence Krauss, Michael Shermer, Eugenie Scott, Jennifer Michael Hecht, Steve Novella and the SGU Rogues, Ophelia Benson, and dozens of others.

But don't just take our word for how amaz!ng TAM is (we're skeptics after all). Check out a video from last year and decide for yourself. This vigorous discussion on "Our Future In Space" featuring Phil Plait, Pamela Gay, Lawrence Krauss, Bill Nye, and Neil deGrasse Tyson was one of the most memorable moments at TAM 2011. We invite you to enjoy the video of this great panel discussion and hope you'll join us for TAM 2012. »

TAM Video: Our Future In Space

horizontal separatorHelp others attend TAM 2012!

Large conferences like TAM are very expensive to produce, and as a result registration fees may be unaffordable for some, especially students. While JREF offers a discounted registration to students and JREF members (below JREF's actual costs, in some cases), some people may still not be able to afford to attend.

We are happy to announce that due to several generous individuals who have partnered with the JREF to organize various grant programs to help those who need financial assistance to attend The Amaz!ng Meeting 2012, dozens of people will be able to come to TAM this year who otherwise wouldn’t be able to attend. These grants apply directly to the TAM registration fee in order to cover full registration. The grants do not cover airfare, hotel, or other expenses, inlcuding additional add-on events at TAM.

More information about how support this year’s grant programs, as well as how to apply »

horizontal separatorCall for Papers at TAM 2012 (Deadline May 15)

Following our now ten year tradition, the James Randi Educational Foundation will once again invite proposals for short (15 minute) presentations on the Sunday morning of The Amazing Meeting in July.

The Sunday Morning Papers session of TAM was established to recognize new voices and ideas and shine on them the spotlight of the TAM community. If you have had success in communicating rational skepticism, teaching critical thinking, combating pseudoscience, or furthering the mission of JREF in some new and significant way, we want to hear from you!

Please follow the this link for an application and instructions for your 15 minute talk proposal »

horizontal separatorUpdates from the Field

James Randi Broadcast Live to 35 Locations in Italy: This Wednesday, May 16, James Randi’s presentation in Milan, Italy will be broadcast live to all 35 locations of The Space theater chain throughout Italy. The live broadcast event is part of the theater’s cultural programing that also includes similar broadcasts of music, dance, opera, and other performances. Read more »

JREF's Tour of Europe: Randi in Spain, Italy and Germany: James Randi’s and D.J. Grothe‘s are currently on whirlwind European tour including major events in Spain, Italy, and Germany. They began the trip last week at Neuromagic 2012, the second magic and neuroscience conference on San Simon Island (what is referred to as "The Island of Thought") in Vigo, Spain. Since then they have been making stops in several cities in Europe for lectures and meetings with local and national skeptics groups and university audiences, culminating in their appearances at the the 6th World Skeptics Congress in Berlin, Germany May 18th-20th, where Randi will present the keynote address.  Read more »

James Randi Speaks to the Ann Arbor Skeptics: A few weeks ago, the Ann Arbor Skeptics hosted a live Skype video conference with James Randi. They discussed skeptical activism at the grassroots, Randi's upcoming book A Magician in the Laboratory, and took questions from the audience. Randi loves reaching out to the worldwide skeptical community like this, and interfacing with enthusiastic local skeptics groups is a hugely important part of our mission here at the JREF. Read more »

Thanks to everyone who made these events happen!

horizontal separatorThe Amazing Column on Wired.com

The Amazing Column is the JREF's new regular column for Wired.com. Five articles are now online:

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Don’t Miss The Randi Show on YouTube

randishow.jpgThe Randi Show, is a video podcast featuring James Randi himself discussing news from the worlds of science, pseudoscience, and the paranormal and sharing a few personal stories from his amazing life along the way. Recent episodes include:

  • Faith Healers & Facilitated Communicators. In this episode, Randi discusses the impact of his book "The Faith Healers" on popular culture, and he shares the story of a facilitated communicator who had the courage to question her own beliefs. Watch now »

  • Deceptive Marketing. In this episode, Randi discusses deceptive marketing. It's used in both everyday products and pseudoscientific bunk, so how do we educate ourselves against it? Watch now »

  • Nostradamus. In this episode, Randi discusses his recent acquisition of a rare, early edition of Nostradamus' prophecies. Watch now »

  • Science Communication. In this episode, Randi discusses rising anti-science sentiment, what we can do to fight it, and how some of the best science communicators are helping to keep the public educated. Watch now »

  • Snake Oil. In this episode, Randi discussion the recent ASA action against Groupon for promoting literal snake oil. Watch now »

  • Psychic Charlatans. In this episode, Randi discusses the recent conviction of a self-proclaimed psychic for theft. Plus, he talks about laws against storefront psychics and how these types of frauds operate around the world. Watch now »

You can also subscribe to The Randi Show on iTunes.

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Join TEAM RANDI in the fight against unreason and harmful psuedoscience. Become a JREF Member today!


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