GeekGirlCon is being invaded with SKEPTICISM!

Okay, I guess it’s not really an invasion. Skepticism goes hand and hand with GeekGirlCon‘s mission – “promoting awareness of and celebrating the contribution and involvement of women in all aspects of the sciences, science fiction, comics, gaming and related Geek culture.” Due to a last minute opening in their schedule, the skeptics get a panel of their own! …Which I frantically organized so hopefully it will still be awesome!

Skepticism 101
Sunday, October 9th
11 am – Noon
Fidalgo, Seattle Center Northwest Rooms

What can people do to keep their bullshit detector well calibrated, and why is this especially important for women? This panel will provide people with the toolkit to be a good skeptic when it comes to extraordinary claims, using geek girl-relevant issues like:

– Pseudoscience that’s popular with the ladies (astrology, crystal healing, etc)
– Women’s intuition, why it’s a myth, and how the anti-vaccination movement has exploited this idea at the expense of science
– Scams that target women (stay away from that homeopathic yeast infection treatment!)
– More severe manifestations of irrational misogyny, like witch burnings in Africa

Learn why the scientific method is a powerful gadget to have in your utility belt!

The panel will be moderated by our Friend of Girl Geeks, Paul Case, who is the head of the Seattle Skeptics. And the panel is packed with awesome skeptical ladies, including:

Dana Hunter
You want to know about Dana Hunter, then, do you? I’m a science blogger, SF writer, compleat geology addict, Gnu Atheist, and owner of a – excuse me, owned by a homicidal felid. I loves me some Doctor Who, Buffy, Angel, Firefly and Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. Sums me up. Find me at my blog En Tequila es Verdad (

Jen McCreight
I do stuff.

Amy Davis Roth
Amy Davis Roth (aka Surly Amy) is a 4th generation visual artist from Hollywood, California. She runs a handmade art business called Surly-Ramics where she creates ceramic jewelry inspired by science and skepticism. Amy is a longtime contributor to the widely popular blog where she writes, among other things, a skeptical advice column called “Ask Surly Amy.” She is managing editor for, which deals with the intersection between art, science and skepticism called.  She loves to add her creative skills to the fight against pseudoscience.

Valerie Tarico
Valerie Tarico is a psychologist and writer in Seattle, Washington who explores the intersection between belief and psychology with candor and compassion.  She is the author of Trusting Doubt: A Former Evangelical Looks at Old Beliefs in a New Light, the founder of, and a contributor to the Huffington Post Religion Page.  Her articles can be found at

Meg Winston
I was raised on faith healing, pyramid schemes, supernatural beings, and conspiracy theories. After figuring out that this was not serving me well as an adult, I am now dedicated to promoting a culture of science literacy. I am a theater major returning to school for physics! Hmm… a former professional actor who is currently a youth worker in social services pursuing a career in popular science writing and curriculum development? You got it. Other than being a co-organizer with Seattle Skeptics and involved in local Humanist/Free-thought organizations, I also enjoy gaming as much as possible.

If you were already going to GeekGirlCon, make sure to stop by! And tickets are still on sale in case this is the extra motivation you needed.


  1. Aliasalpha says

    “She is managing editor for, which deals with the intersection between art, science and skepticism called.”

    Looks like that sentence ended a word too soon.

    I must say I’d rather like to attend the game design challenge but not only can I not afford the tickets to the con but I also can’t afford to fly halfway around the planet. Damn this lack of teleporters!

  2. says

    Congratulations on getting this panel added, Jen! You and Amy will be awesome as always, as will the other women I’m sure although I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting them yet. We need skeptical panels, tracks, and the like to become regular features at this and similar events world-wide. Now if only I lived on the west coast . . .

  3. says

    Well, Jen, I wanted to let you know that the panel has already had some success. When I saw the logo, I thought “Why is the girl on the right pregnant?”

    Then I realized how stupid that reaction was. Not because on closer inspection she is actually not pregnant (that’s a cocked hip, not a baby bulge), but because there’s no reason not to depict a pregnant woman. *headdesk*

    (If anyone cares, I expanded on my stupidity on my blog)

  4. zachpidgeon says

    Damn. Is there any chance this might end up on the youtubes? I don’t think I can get from Boston to Seattle by bicycle.

  5. fastlane says

    This is actually in Seattle? I wonder if I could bring my wife to this.

    I’ve only recently moved here (from Dumbfuckistan, KS) and I’m loving it!

    Only tangentially related, can you recommend a good ‘things to do in the Puget Sound area’ website?

  6. twojarslave says

    I’m SKEPTICAL about this GeekGirlCon. Granted, I don’t know anything about it besides what I just read but my guess is that it is some kind of trap.

    I expect that you will arrive there to be greeted by legions of slovenly dorks who think that the best way to meet women is to fool them into thinking this will somehow be a female-oriented convention.

    If women were really interested in having a convention of their own I’d advise that you hold it in the largest, most flamboyant gay bar in San Francisco.

    I predict a M:F ratio of 8:1. Good luck!

  7. Ubi Dubium says

    Dangity dang, this is on the wrong coast for me. Please say this whole panel is coming to the Reason Rally, yes please?

  8. Tiger says

    While the panel sounds interesting, I’m a little put off by the way the description is written. You didn’t just write “pseudoscience”, but had to tack on “that’s popular with the ladies.” Not just scams, but “scams that target women.”

    It’s GeekGirlCon. Shouldn’t it be a given that the panel’s discussion points will be interesting to women?

  9. dcg1 says

    Dear Jen
    I enjoy reading your blog most days; we share your skeptical and atheist viewpoint. Not only that, as a male of the species, I find it most informative about the female veiwpoint/psyche. I’m British, the best equivalent on this side of the Atlantic is “Women’s Hour” On BBC Radio 4. I recommend it to U.S.listeners, its available as a Podcast, daily on the BBC website (at approx 10:00 am GMT.

    You’ve blotted your copy book however. My wife is incandescent about your comment that Pseudo-Science (Astrology, Crystal healing) is popular with the ladies. It might sound pedantic, But she found it highly offensive and contrary to your position on these issues.

    Perhaps you could amend your post to read, “Pseudo-science like Astrology and Crystal healing, is highly popular with Morons”.

    Many Thanks.


  10. says

    I am sorry that your wife is outraged by factual information. Practitioners of astrology and crystal healing are overwhelmingly female. I’m trying to fix that problem instead of pretending it doesn’t exist.

  11. dcg1 says

    Whoa Jen. What’s with the aggression?

    My wife has no problem at all with factual information, practioners of this kind of pseudo-science may be overwhelmingly female; Although being awkward skeptic types, we would be interested to see the empirical evidence that your assertion is based on.

    My wife is not a geeky internet type and does not generally do blogs. I merely showed her your post. The reason for her anger was that she objects to such generalisations, and as a rational and free thinking female, resents being lumped in with the cretins who believe such nonsense. I would think that a similar proportion of Males are equally moronic.

    Whilst we admire your intention to try to educate the stupid and ill-informed. We can’t help but believe that you’ll have the same problems in trying to disuade believers in crystal healing and astrology, as the atheist movement has in trying to educate creationists.

    Good Luck

    Marianne and Alex.

    The reason for our cynicism, is that we live in an English county called Somerset, and near a town called Glastonbury (yes the one of Arthurian legend). To use American parlance, the town is what could be described as cretin central. Its populated by a far higher than normal percentage of crystal healers, new age weirdo’s, charlatans and other flakes.

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