I have arrived at #Skepticon

I give my talk in a little over an hour…but to no purpose. This guy has been ranting on the #sk6 twitter stream all day about a boycott and a walkout and an uprising and a rebellion during my session, so I expect my discussion of the Cambrian explosion will be delivered to an empty room with people walking out and rising up and rebelling, all at the same time. It’s going to be total chaos!


I managed to catch bits and pieces of a few workshop sessions this afternoon — all good and lively and well-attended. It’s going to break my heart after seeing all this enthusiasm to be publicly rebuked by the entire aggregate attendance of the conference, all because Rich Sandersen has so much clout. Or at least, he thinks he does.

Hey, twitter, it would also be nice if searches excluded people we have blocked. Why can’t you do that?


  1. beatgroover says

    How immature, simply being rude is not “rebellious” in any way. You should post your talk, always love a good lecture on the Cambrian explosion!

  2. MJP says

    These guys are assmartyrs. They act like they’re being persecuted and bullied because people scorn them for being assholes.

  3. says

    Note also: he’s one of the long-term manic obsessed Watson haters, he lives in England, and he has never intended to attend Skepticon, anyway.

  4. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The smell of rebellion or the smell of bullshit? So hard to tell those apart, sometimes.

    In this case both. The are rebelling against FtB bullies and feminazis who aren’t bothering them except by existing, but they do so with bullshit and arrogance, creating a stronger more obnoxious aroma than eau de skunk. And they wonder why people avoid them…like Pepe le Pew.

  5. anteprepro says

    I think I am most surprised to learn that there are still people using FTBullies unironically. I wonder when these folks will finally learn that they are making themselves into living punchlines? And I wonder when their utter shamelessness will finally budge just enough for them to care and choose less ridiculous memes? I’m banking on….2040.

  6. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I suspect the walkout will be as successful as when Justicrate tried to organize one earlier. And according to PZ, NOBODY LEFT.

  7. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Here is the tweet in text for those who use text to speech programs:

    Richard Sanderson

    The smell of #rebellion is in the air at #sk6. JOIN THE BOYCOTT. JOIN your brothers and sisters in the WALK OUTS. #FTBullies

    End quote.

    Poor guy fancies himself a revolutionary. Why he hashtagged rebellion is beyond me. What a waste of bytes.

  8. anteprepro says

    And according to PZ, NOBODY LEFT.

    Yeah, PZ would say that, wouldn’t he? Rewriting the Brave Heroes out of history already! #worsethanhitler

  9. chigau (違う) says

    Would anyone actually attend a conference for the purpose of not attending the conference?
    Seems a bit daft.

  10. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yeah, PZ would say that, wouldn’t he? Rewriting the Brave Heroes out of history already! #worsethanhitler

    Yeah, and he will do it in the Cambrian tonight, without leaving any rabbits behind…. ;)

  11. keresthanatos says

    Cambrian explosion will be delivered to an empty room with people walking out and rising up and rebelling, all at the same time. It’s going to be total chaos! ………sweet, it must be awesome to have that type of power. Wish I could be there to witness carnage, as well as the talk.

  12. says

    Hey, twitter, it would also be nice if searches excluded people we have blocked.

    Seconding that! And I think this is a good place to plug the Greasemonkey tool I put together called the Zapper that is essentially a killfile for Twitter on Chrome or Firefox. It was conceived of by FTB’s very own sondosia. You can add anyone you want to it, and/or you can use the block bot’s preselected lists. I think it is relevant because getting rid of tweets by certain people on Twitter tag & keyword searches was the motivation behind it.
    Use it with Tampermonkey if you run Chrome, or Greasemonkey if you use Firefox:

  13. Muz says

    There was a couple of those guys in the comments section of the last NonStampCollector video/farrago (including Thaddeus T F00te himself) trumpeting their victory through relentless campaigning against FTB (It was just before the comments changed so probably no chance of finding it now).
    The seemingly unironic, unselfconscious demagoguery of their language is… surreal. They really do seem to picture themselves on the hustings, plants in the crowd calling back on cue, you name it.

  14. says

    I might be a #FTBully Vagylon Bralek Gynofascist™ but at least it’s a step above being a case-study in impotent, obsessive, semi-coherent rage.

    In somewhat related news I noticed that even the illustrious Cracked.com has noticed the foolishness and in its latest article on sexism has linked to a Skepchick post about internet abuse by Rebecca Watson. And so two of my frequently-visited internet circles intersect for the first time (and, by golly, some of the Cracked comments could’ve been lifted straight from Slyme-troll comments right here on this blog).

  15. chigau (違う) says

    Hankstar #21
    Is that yours?
    I want give correct credit when I use everywhere I can.

  16. says

    chigau @22

    I’m cautiously confident that “Vagylon” is mine, as is “Bralek” (both coined at this very network if memory serves) but that’s only because I’ve not seen anyone else use them. In the absence of disconfirming evidence I’m happy to claim provisional credit :)

  17. Goodbye Enemy Janine says

    According to Richard Sanderson/Sandersen, I am a “woman abuser” and “rape apologist”. Also, if you check his Twitter homepage, he proudly claims to have coined “FtBullies”.

  18. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Is PZ in his mild-mannered Professor mode? Hard to bully from that persona….

  19. Artor says

    Lol. I feel only amused derision for the poor delicate snowflakes that use “FTBullies” unironically. They’re about as persecuted as Xians are today.

  20. Menyambal --- inesteemable says

    Oy. I stopped by Skepticon on my way home, and was lucky enough to be able introduce myself to PZ himself. I babbled a few seconds and let him go. Then I headed for dinner and doing laundry. I just want to make it clear that I was not boycotting the talk, I was feeding the dogs.

    PZ, it was great to meet you. Thanks.

    I was a bit starstruck, folks, and had just finished a full day at an elementary school, so it was not my best chat, but PZ is a good guy.

    I spotted several other familiar faces, which was neat. The talk I had time for was fun to listen to.

    I got to toddle around and meet some of the founders of Skepticon and congratulate them on all they had done. When I went to MSU back in 1995, I tried to start up an atheist student group. We got a handful of students, but could not find a staff person willing to risk being sponsor. So I can tell you that finding Skepticon at MSU/Springfield is more amazing than you think it is. (There are several bible colleges in town, and a couple of Christian-founded/oriented colleges, and at the one non-religious college—MSU—there were Christian student groups holding big meetings all the time, and we couldn’t get an atheist group off the ground.)

  21. fwtbc says

    throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble @ #11

    Thanks for the transcription, that was helpful.

  22. ChasCPeterson says

    Rumtopf @#24: yeesh, Mayhew is a freakin joke. She actually thinks it’s her place to dictate what kind of jewelry True Skeptics ought not to buy? What in the sweet world does Skepticism have to do with taste in personal adornments ffs? And then all the waving of the TED flag around. She really needs to get over herself. What a truly distasteful person. I’d go as far as repulsive.

  23. hamilton says

    So sorry to have missed the talk…er….walkout. I had tried to book a hotel near the conference for me, what would have been my first, but all rooms/hotels nearby were jam-packed. Still, I am in NYC instead and lurking as usual on the blogs.
    Carry on, then.
    / relurk

  24. August Berkshire says

    Well, your talk should have been over hours ago and you haven’t posted, so the only logical conclusion is that you were arrested for inciting a riot as hundreds of people stormed out of your session, in what will come to be known as the Myersian Explosion.

  25. ChasCPeterson says

    I’m sorry, but this Mayhew woman really brings out my inner asshole. She’s all high-&-mighty about surlyramics because this is her idea of a “fine art print”?

    [oh, and this highly original fine art]

  26. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says


    That We are star stuff shirt is cute.

    Besides, it must take a lot of effort to sew each shirt or bag, and then put that print on. And just imagine all the hard work on iPod cases!

    And then you have Surly Amy playing with some clay and paints.

  27. says

    Rich Sanderson is a Brit, but unless he tweets in the middle of the night he lives in the US. So I’d guess a Brit in the US, Like ElevatorGATE. I’m scared of going over there now as Brit brains plus large amounts of American food (? or something) seems to create the most deranged antifeminists imaginable.

    IF you follow
    @hashspamkiller + @hashspamkiller1 + @hashspamkiller2 + @hashspamkiller3 + @hashspamkiller4 + @hashspamkiller5

    You’ll get all the sk6 tweets without idiots… Or browse Hashspamkiller’s Favs for all the tweets in one place!

  28. says

    @Rumtopf #24 & ChasCPeterson #32: Mayhew is amazing. It’s as if every tweet or statement of hers is required by some Batman-villain-esque compulsion to contain either rank hypocrisy, gross factual inaccuracy, or obvious projection. It’s the latter-most for that tweet, particularly the “cookie cutter crap” jab. Spend an hour on DeviantArt or wandering through a high school art class, and I guarantee you’ll see more stuff that looks like Sara Mayhew’s work than Surly Amy’s.

    It’s especially hilarious after she posted this, then this.

  29. says

    @ChasCPeterson #35: Oh, that Chill Girl one is amazing. And Photoshop-filtered-from-screengrabs Sherlock fanart? Nothing cookie cutter about that, no siree.

    She’s the J*hn Kw*k of TED talks.

  30. vaiyt says

    Sara E Mayhew Social Justice Warriors calling me “Weeaboo”, a term created by 4chan to replace instances of the racist term “Wapanese”.

    Supaa kawaii desu ne Zvan-san?! Derp!

    White People Are The Real Victims of Racism + casual ableism. Double whammy!

  31. Nathan Hull says

    It’s hard to believe but there may be more imbeciles per capita in the skeptic/atheist “community” than the general population.

  32. UnknownEric the Apostate says

    It’s hard to believe but there may be more imbeciles per capita in the skeptic/atheist “community” than the general population.

    The Skeptoatheist cafeteria has an open door policy for assholes.


  33. says

    25 gworoll:

    Still waiting on this walkout.

    I’m still waiting for these clowns to actually do something to further their agenda (whatever it is) besides stamp their feet and wail at FtB and feminist skeptics*.

    *I realise that stamping and wailing may be the only things on their agenda.

  34. blf says

    Oh good grief. Baseless accusations time, conveniently anonymous, non-specific, and several steps removed.

    (I suspect poopyhead will remove the troll’s comment, so to clarify after the clean-up, this comment is about a preceding “A friend of mine heard from a friend of friend that so-and-so is a [very nasty criminal]” comment.)

  35. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Monitor note:
    Please remember to stick to the topic of the OP. If you have a bone to pick with somebody, please take it to Thunderdome

    Stay on topic, unless it’s an obvious “fun” thread. If you have something off topic that you must share, the Thunderdome thread is always appropriate.

    Beyond that, from the rules

    I. Your post will be edited if:
    …5. You are being pointlessly abusive or argumentative.
    6. You ignore requests by other readers to stop a behavior.

    IV. You will be banned from the blog if:
    …8. Your posts need to be edited too often.
    9. You are egregiously abusive, and ignore requests from others.
    10. You are relentlessly negative — why are you here if you have nothing positive to say?

  36. Jackie teh kitteh cuddler says

    Bill Snoot,
    You’ll never convince us that you have friends to tell you tall tales in the first place.

  37. anteprepro says

    Mildly entertaining: the juxtaposition of Bill Snoot’s inane comment with Hankstar’s comment immediately preceding it.

    It’s the little things in life, ya know?

  38. koncorde says

    I like his two claims to fame, to have coined FTBullies (plausible) and that he invented the portmanteau Conspirloon….which has been around as Conspiraloon for as long as I have been alive I’m sure.

  39. David Marjanović says

    Menyambal! I had no idea you were there!!! If you’re still in town, I might change again and have a dinner other than chocolate/chocolate cookies*…

    I spotted several other familiar faces

    Somebody please stop me before I go into a minute-long rant about how furious I am that we didn’t get nametags.

    We were even promised nametags: they were explicitly given as a reason for why we should register online when there’s no attendance fee.

    I have no idea how many other people whose names I know I’ve walked by. I happened to have a nametag from the conference I attended 2 weeks ago, so I wore that, but for a long time I was the only labeled person at the entire conference.

    * Two of the main food groups right there.

  40. yubal says

    Rich Sandersen? Who is that guy?

    google directs me either to this blog post or someone with a similar name who is doing music, even when including the term atheist in the search.

    Is that someone I am supposed to know? And if yes, why?

  41. yubal says

    oh, yah, top hit was his twitter feed, still doesn’t tell me who the heck that guy is (and what he wants to tell me after reading his twitter feed)