The Pharyngula podcast will happen soon

I’m trying! But coordinating schedules and getting people to agree has been a struggle. A major problem has been Google+’s annoying policies on pseudonyms; another has been that I’ve emailed invitations to a number of people who haven’t replied, and I suspect that their secret email addresses (which I will not reveal) may be fake. Another concern is the international nature of this crowd, with people in the UK, Australia, and North America…so for this first trial, I’m just confining the invitation list to my continent, to minimize scheduling problems a little bit. I will pick hours for future podcasts with an eye to making it more convenient for those other strange parts of the universe.

I will break the news that so far I’ve got Audley Darkheart, Brownian, and Patricia signed up for the first event. I’m really determined to make this a community thing, rather than centered on me, so maybe those names will entice a few more of you to ask to join in…I know that ol’ Poopyhead is no draw at all. If you’re interested, you need a Google+ account (if you’re keeping it mum, email it to me), an email address where I can reach you, and a webcam. I’m also confining the panel to friendly, reasonably well-known participants around these parts, but I could see bringing in creationists or other nemeses at a later date, just not yet.

It’s going to happen this week, because I want to hammer out the bugs. Then it may follow as a roughly weekly event thereafter, preferably with a rotating cast of participants.

P.S. Everyone will be able to watch, it will be stored on Youtube and I’ll post it here. You only need to write to me if you want to be on the panel. You should also be a regular participant in the comments, so people have some idea who you are.


  1. thunk = ∫ SQRRAWK! d(MQG) says

    I don’t do social networking, and never have.

    Sorry I won’t be able to join in.

  2. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    Yeah the whole “We Demand Your Real Name” thing is more than an annoyance for me (and some others); it’s a deal-breaker. Which is too bad, because the idea sounded like fun.

    Yay for Audley and Brownian and Patricia being on, though! I’ll line up for my spawn, my secks, and my spankin’.

  3. says

    You were on my list, but you announced that you couldn’t. Get a headset and send me email!

    oh, you beg so prettily *ahem* I meant to say, once the medical bills are paid off, and this is still going on (and looks fun), I’ll buy one. any suggestions for a cheap and reliable headset?

  4. says

    Yeah the whole “We Demand Your Real Name” thing is more than an annoyance for me (and some others); it’s a deal-breaker. Which is too bad, because the idea sounded like fun.

    do what I did: alternate e-mail with a WASP-ish pseudonym (apparently Jade Hawk is unsuspicious enough)

  5. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    I suppose Josh O. SpokesKraftDinner is out.

    Maybe for next time (I really appreciate being asked!). I’m very, very iffy about supporting FB and Google+. Their campaign to own everyone’s identities and blur the line between private and public lives is much more sinister than I think a lot of people realize.

  6. Brownian says

    Okay, I’m off to get a headset and webcam.

    You know the first twenty minutes is just going to be me saying things like “Folks, we’ve reached our cruising altitude,” and “Oh, a stellar play by McPherson, who has really come out of his rookie year hungry” because, y’know, headset.

  7. Amphigorey says

    FWIW, I’m on G+ as Amphi Gorey. I’ve been there for quite a while and they haven’t kicked me off yet.

  8. Dhorvath, OM says

    Oh how exciting! No time to participate, but I hope all involved have fun with it.

  9. says

    Brownian, and Patricia

    OH MY GOD, AWESOME. *swoons!*

    I know of your privacy concerns (and they’re valid!), but I would like to point out that Audley Darkheart passed G+’s muster. If you sign up, I’d just make sure that you use an email address that’s not connected to anything else.

  10. Mattir says

    I’m nervous about the real name thing (I *am* a Boy Scout leader, after all…), but I’d be more nervous this week about falling asleep during the chat, since this is one of my weeks to run summer camp. The good news is that I’ve got a dozen really cool kids who are enthusiastic about nature and science in general. The bad news is that I get home and go immediately to sleep – 9 hours of nonstop camp fun sort of takes it out of me…

  11. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    <blockquote?I didn’t realize that you had dibs!

    Dibs on the ribs, baby. . .now that’s fun on a bun!

  12. says


    Dibs on the ribs, baby. . .now that’s fun on a bun!

    Hey now! I’m the one incubating this tasty treat– I should get to choose what cuts I want first!

    Good news: my lovely husband just found our headset/mic. Bad news: it’s in two separate pieces. *sigh* Looks like I’m going to BestBuy tomorrow.

  13. Bob O`Bob says

    G+ have at least said that a persistent pseudonym is okay as long as it is “shaped” like a name, or you’re willing to accept a “name shaped” version. My pseudonym, which goes back >20 years, was already “name shaped” but a lot of folks with mononyms have adopted an expedient second name-part in order to draw less attention to it.

  14. thunk = ∫ SQRRAWK! d(MQG) says

    On second thought…

    Aight, maybe once I find a reasonable-sounding name… :p

  15. koliedrus says


    I rank this entire endeavor just below anticipating a new episode of Futurama.

    Yes, it’s tomorrow.

    Yes, I almost peed myself and made the dogs alert when I squealed because of double mint of awesome.



  16. thunk = ∫ SQRRAWK! d(MQG) says

    On third thought… no.

    I was hating FB before it was popular!

    Anyway, the other members of the horder will say things much better than me; I’m new…

  17. thunk = ∫ SQRRAWK! d(MQG) says

    Any advice would be appreciated

    (sorry for mass posting)

  18. 'Tis Himself says

    I don’t have either a webcam or a headset. Plus Wednesdays are when I have to play commode door (but only until next January). I’ll be interested in a later webcast if there are any.

  19. thunk = ∫ SQRRAWK! d(MQG) says

    On fourth thought, I do have all the necessary equipment, and lots of free time (it’s summer), so I’ll consider it.

    (‘s hard!)

  20. says

    All you need is a suitable pseudonym that’s not TOOO obvious, and a disposable email. Go to to get a completely throwaway one that still lets you read email and click on any requited authenticating links. Some sites won’t accept mailinator addresses, but they have a lot of other domains that look just fine. Such as,, etc. Keep reloading mailinator until you find a usable one; there isn’t a list.

    For FB, I use a separate browser to my main one, so it’s not tracking my history and cookies. G+ should be OK there too.

  21. says


    Why a headset?

    Apparently, the POV switches from person to person depending on where the sound came from– so, for instance, a squeaking chair could take attention off of the main speaker. A headset with a mic will cut down on that.

  22. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    Audley—just duct-tape the goddamned thing with our without Krazy Glue. Surrious. I will get my MONEY’S WORTH out of a headset, cheap plastic be damned.

  23. Randomfactor says

    No rotating for me,

    Someone get that Evil Leader a swivel chair!

    Looking forward to watching; my lair needs a serious cleaning before I’d buy a webcam.

  24. Patricia, OM says

    I’ve already emailed PZ – My 79 year old aunt (last one living) was coming into the veterans office this afternoon to see me, and she fell getting out of the car and struck her head on the curb. I’m leaving shortly to stay with her until at least Friday afternoon. So looks like I will have to come on at a later date.

    This really sucks because she’s hurt, and it was such an honor to be even asked to do this. Huge apologies to PZ and everyone else.

  25. mferrari says

    Will there be a straight audio file as well? itunes would be a great place to post something like that! (pretty please?)

  26. Rey Fox says

    Geez. It sounds tempting. I have a cam built into my laptop, and I have a headset that an eBay seller threw into one of my purchases years ago. I just don’t have Google+. And I’m going out of town for a couple weeks.

  27. Skatje Myers says

    G+ allows pseudonyms, and they don’t need to be “name shaped”. The requirement is that they are established pseudonyms. They added this to their policy many months ago.

  28. thunk = ∫ SQRRAWK! d(MQG) says

    thanks Skatje :)

    I’ve used “thunk” since 2010*, I guess that counts.

    *not on pharyngula, that’s last April

  29. nslasha says

    I will continue boycotting G+ until they end the real name policy. I’m even boycotting postcasts recorded during a G+ hangout. I miss Astronomy Cast and I won’t subscribe to Pharyngula.

  30. quoderatdemonstrandum says

    I have just succesfully opened a gmail account and G+ account under a variation of my nym

    It did have to be “name shaped” and I had to add a last name

    but I am still “QED”

    When I signed into FtB Word Press did not accept QED, does anyone know how I can change my ‘nym back to QED?


  31. Beatrice says

    If you sign up, I’d just make sure that you use an email address that’s not connected to anything else.

    This, definitely. I got swayed into joining G+, but I used an email address that I forgot was linked to my real name email and got a nasty surprise of suddenly appearing in people’s clouds and whatnot. Deleted the whole thing immediately.

    I’m keeping out of both Facebook and Google+, so I’m glad we’ll be able to listen to podcasts on Youtube.

    Yay, I can’t wait!

  32. says


    Audley—just duct-tape the goddamned thing with our without Krazy Glue. Surrious. I will get my MONEY’S WORTH out of a headset, cheap plastic be damned.

    Yeah, except one of the wires was mangled, too. I just don’t have it in me to solder the damned thing back together.

    *hugs!* I hope you aunt recovers quickly.

    I’m assuming swears will be allowed?

  33. gussnarp says

    Huh. I think I can set up a pseudonymous G+ account, but I don’t think I’m a frequent or interesting enough commenter to qualify. I’m certainly no Brownian. Is this thing going to have video? Isn’t that an issue for maintaining anonymity too?

  34. sciencebulldog says

    Would love to join in, but just started my online presence with my blog and twitter account. Afraid I don’t quite have the online street cred yet to warrant a invitation. Heck it took me 20 min to figure out how to comment on this and the skepchick blogs. :) However, I will be adding comments in the future and look forward to contributing to discussions regarding science and reason.

  35. carlie says

    Well, there’s always youtube downloader and converter, cnet review here, which has been around for years and seems to be getting more and more streamlined as an app. Perfectly legal if you’re converting your own videos to audio.

  36. Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle says


    no one loves meeeeee… I didn’t get an invitation!

    oh, wait, I did say I didn’t have a microphone so I couldn’t participate, didn’t I.

    *slinks off*

    Me neither *sniffles* AND I don’t even have a webcam

    *runs away crying*

  37. Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle says

    I started counting my pennies as soon as I saw this post. It will be done!


  38. ericpaulsen says

    If someone can tell me how to get a straight audio file out of this, I’d be happy to include that.

    Any video file you can open in Quicktime (since you seem to use Mac I assume you have it) can be saved as multiple file types, among them .aiff, .au, and .wav. The VLC application will allow you to convert to .ogg, mp3, .acc, or .flac of which .mp3 is probably the most universally supported. If you like I can see if VLC is applescriptable and write a quick script to automate it if you like. Obviously applescript only runs on Apple computers so there’s that…

    If interested please let me know at ecpaulsen(at)

  39. Evader, the parasite-infested branch on the evolutionary tree says

    Look forward to this Professor!

    For those who don’t like using their real name, try anagrams.

    My anagrammed name is Morally Thin. Which is kinda funny, as I am a stick figure body type. Then again, G+ probably has some algorithm that determines the ‘validity’ of a name.

  40. Sili says

    Wasn’t there a threat at some point that if the Google Overlords did not approve of your pseudonym, they would remove all your Google engagements?

  41. Brownian says

    I’ll check it out just to hear Pharyngulans swear.

    Be aware that the foulest curses in most languages involve sexual, scatological, or theological taboos. Since we do not respect God, do not disrespect sex, and consider an excrement-covered head to be somewhat endearing, curses in Pharyngulans are relatively tame affairs.

    Hence most of us use English in our online profanities.

    20 June 2012 at 4:37 pm
    Audley Darkheart, Brownian, and Patricia


  42. theophontes (坏蛋) says

    @ PZ

    I have seen I have mail, but cannot open it (I am in Haerbin). I shall try again when I am back this evening or early tomorrow. The interwebz are very strange in this part of the world. :(

  43. Sili says

    Not in the shower! It pills!

    I don’t wear pants in the shower.

    Nor do I read Pharyngula there.

    But now that you mention it, perhaps I should find a way to view vlogs there …