The Shorty Awards are HERE! Get nomnomnominating!

As per my previous post, the Shorty Awards are now OPEN for nominations!  Time to get voting!

What you need to do:
There’s a few things you need to keep in mind so I’d like to spell them out nice and early if I could.

  • Your twitter account MUST be an active one. Any accounts with zero tweets will not be counted, and if too many such accounts are seen voting for someone, that person could end up being disqualified so do NOT create dummy or bot accounts.
  • Your nomination/vote MUST have a reason included. Any nominations or votes without a reason will not be counted.
  1. Create a twitter account and post a few tweets on it.  If you’re not sure how to use twitter then following Lucas Randall’s #TAMOz list may be a good place to start.
  2. Get involved, reply to people, have a conversation.
  3. Post some nomination tweets in the format of “I nominate (person) for a Shorty Award in (#category) because (reason)” or a shorter version of “#shortyawards (person) #category (reason)”.
  4. And of course, spread the word on twitter, facebook, blogs, and any other method available to you (even real life!).

You can keep an eye on how things are going here.

Some of my suggestions are:

“I nominate @DrRachie for a Shorty Award in #health because she does such standup work against quacks.”
“I nominate @BastardSheep for a Shorty Award in #NoPants because #NoPants is life!”
“I nominate @BadAstronomer for a Shorty Award in #science because he always brings us such interesting and amazing info.”
“I nominate @GeorgeHrab for a Shorty Award in #entertainment because of his awesome podcast, music and comedy stylings.”
“I nominate @PZMyers for a Shorty Award in #Religion because of his push to use reason instead of it.”
“I nominate @jref for a Shorty Award in #Education because of their promotion of reason in schooling.”
“I nominate @RSPCA for a Shorty Award in #charity because of the awesome work they do for animals.”
“I nominate @nocompulsoryvac for a Shorty Award in #Quacks because of her tireless effort to spread lies about vaccines.”

Of course, you should feel free to nominate who ever you’d like, and remember you actually CAN nominate multiple people in one category.

Nominate @bastardsheep in the Shorty Awards!

The Shorty Awards are coming.

Those of you who were around 12 months ago may remember the fun and games that happened during the Shorty Awards.  Those of you who weren’t around or don’t remember, I’ll cover that below.

The Shorty’s are only a few weeks away from opening up for nominations, and I’d like to get a jump on that quacks this year so lets start spreading the message already.  If you’re interested in helping out Science and Skepticism defeat the quacks, willingly ignorant and blatantly deceptive then please create a Twitter account (if you don’t have one already), get at least a few tweets out there and watch this space ready for the nominations and voting to commence. Continue reading

#libelreform and small online activism.

Most people are too shy to get out there and do real activism, but you should be aware there’s always something you can do.  Even the smallest thing helps, especially when you get a large number of people doing the same thing.

A mate of mine who goes by the online name Drunken Madman has come up with a brilliant idea (inspired by this) for a bit of small-time online activism anyone can do, so I’d like to promote the idea as well and get as many people onboard as possible.

If you use any geolocation services such as Foursquare, then you’re all set.  I’m sure there’s plenty of other similar services out there, so choose which ever one suits you.

You can read the full details of this small bit of online activism at his blog, My Colleagues are Idiots.  If you’re curious about the phrase he’s put forward (this phrase is especially for chiropractors), then take a gander at LibelReform.org and Sense About Science and get tagging.

While you’re at it, also check out the Skepticator and the latest on the Australian Vaccination Network.

#TAMOz – Pricing, Website, Ticket Availability.

#TAMOz (The Amazing Meeting: Australia)’s website is now LIVE! Check it out now for all the official information on TAM Australia including confirmed speakers, venue details, accommodation, and most importantly … ticket pricing and availability!

For up to the moment information the three best ways to keep yourself in the loop are all via social networking methods.

I could repeat some of the details here to try and drum up support, but personally I think it’s easier if you just go to the official website.  I for one cannot wait.  Such big names from overseas I would not have had any way to see or meet beforehand, coming to my fair little town.  To quote The Cat from Red Dwarf “I’m so excited, all six of my nipples are tingling!”.

AVN talk at the State Library of WA is going ahead as we speak, and that’s good.

I should have spoken up earlier.  It’s currently 6pm in Western Australia, Meryl Dorey is setting up for her talk at the State Library of WA.  As a believer in science and reality based medicine, I am disappointed this is going ahead.  I am also glad.

When Meryl first announced her talk in Perth at the Uniting Church in The City, many people from the StopAVN group contacted them to let them know the reality behind the Australian Vaccination Network, what they really stood for and would really be talking about.  UCiTC were shocked, and decided in the end to cancel the booking.

The Australian Vaccination Network then looked around and lined up a new venue, the State Library of Western Australia.  They told Meryl they often have controversial groups talk, so would not cancel.  True to their word, once contacted by StopAVN members they responded in a similar way and allowed the talk to continue.  Continue reading

New website launched to counter AVN.

Australia’s Anti Vaccination group, the Australian Vaccination Network are doing a seminar tomorrow in Perth.  They like to claim they give parents both sides of the vaccination “debate” to “let them decide”, a statement I covered in yesterday’s post.  However, I am yet to see them give any positive information on vaccines.  As a matter of fact, the only information I have seen from them on vaccines has been completely wrong.  This is quite disturbing for a group who claims to be the “vaccination watchdog”, and run by someone who claims to be “the leading expert in Australia on vaccines”.

Also as I said yesterday, you cannot give information and misinformation on equal platters and ask people to decide for themselves.  That’s just unproductive and dangerous as it gives people the false impression that the misinformation is justified and supported.  So, to counter the misinformation and blatant lies by the AVN in tomorrow’s seminar, a website has been launched specifically to correct the AVN’s incorrect claims. Continue reading

Wowzers trying to stop science again.

Earlier today I tweeted about a breakthrough by some Australian scientists after they created the first ever artificial life.  It’s the world’s first fully synthetic cell, controlled by man-made DNA.  But that’s not what this post is about.  No.  It only took a few hours, but the wowzers are already out in force trying to put a premature end to this breakthrough and once again slow down science.

The reasons they’re using to try and stop it are their completely unfounded fears, and completely fictitious invisible friends.  Continue reading