Black hole discovered inside the astronomy community

It’s name is Scott Lewis. He has “borrowed” over $30,000 from various people by telling tales of financial misery, getting pitying contributions, and then turning on his donors.

Scott Lewis tells many persuasive tales of woe involving former partners and/or friends designed to appeal to his current target’s compassion and desire to make a difference in his life. In hindsight, it should have been an obvious red flag to us that he seems to have an alarming number of these stories. By connecting with each other, we have now realized that many of the stories we had heard about each other were in reality blatant lies, crafted by Scott Lewis presumably to dissuade us from contacting each other. As author Lynn Fairweather puts it, “…an abuser’s prospect becomes an even better potential victim if she’s willing to listen to his tale of woe and offer him sympathy and encouragement, because then he’s hit the jackpot: He’s found a “saver,” a nurturing woman who compulsively takes in troubled souls, blind to the inherent risks to her own well-being”. Each of us have wanted to be “better than all the previous people” when we first entered his life.

Scott Lewis deliberately maneuvers his new target into disliking all his ex partners and previous friends. This is also why we have been silent for so long; for a very long time we were too scared to reach out to anyone else, or speak about what he did to us. We knew that he would always craft his narrative to portray himself in the best possible light while making us look vindictive, petty, and delusional. We were scared that he would reach out to mutual friends first with his own version of the story, to further isolate us and make his deception and abuse less likely to be called out. Since connecting with other victims of Scott Lewis’s abuse, we have been able to see exactly how he distorts the things that he does; the way he minimizes his own role, plays the victim, and pins all the blame on the actual victim instead. We were surprised to realize we each experienced the exact same cycle of abuse at his hands.

I used to be so optimistic about human beings.


  1. pipefighter says

    I’m still optimistic and i’ve known people like that all my life. Some people, no matter how much you try and reason with them, will always be parasites. Most aren’t.

  2. Zeppelin says

    I don’t see cause for pessimism about human beings in general in this story — I mean, it also shows that it’s relatively easy to find people out there who will trust and care for others even at risk to themselves, for no material benefit, out of compassion.

    We just need to get better at identifying the minority of slick sociopaths trying to ruin the world for everyone else.

  3. says

    Oh my fucking god. I’ve watched the Hubble Space Telescope Hangouts, and am subscribed to the podcast. I followed him on Twitter. I thought he was funny and intelligent. When you’re a fan of Hubble, you tend to know his name.

    But of course this is who he really was. Of course. Because… fucking men.

  4. says

    Oh… now admittedly this I didn’t know, but I’m reading it now in the piece…

    Of course he was a fucking feminist. Of course he was.

    I was in a conversation about trust a while back, and I mentioned that I will never ask, demand, or expect anyone to trust me… and this right here is why. Cishet white d00ds like me will pretend to fight for social justice while being horrid shitheads “behind closed doors”.


  5. Siobhan says


    I don’t know if it will make you feel better, but it’s normal to trust sociopaths. They are slick as fuck. With no conscience to stop them, they are some of the best social engineers in the world. And they put on a great game face.

    The whole reason they’re popular is they know how to keep their abusive tendencies behind closed doors, and they always choose targets who are generally disempowered and likely to be disbelieved if they speak up.

  6. says

    I used to be so optimistic about human beings.

    I’m optimistic about human beings. It doesn’t look like they’ll be able to spread very far, and they’ll die off when their sun eats their planet, if they haven’t wiped themselves out experimenting with nuclear fusion as a weapon, or fossil fuels as an energy source. So, cause for optimism about humanity!

  7. says


    Yeah I know. That’s what makes them so damn effective. Still, though, I actually feel as if it’s safer to expect to have to earn trust, and understand that if I don’t, that’s what it is and it’s okay.

  8. says

    The whole reason they’re popular is they know how to keep their abusive tendencies behind closed doors, and they always choose targets who are generally disempowered and likely to be disbelieved if they speak up.

    Wow, it’s like you’re talking about bike shorts skeptic, and Bill Cosby, and fucking every other sociopathic rapist who embeds in a community and virtue signals while they’re pouring the drinks to someone.

  9. gijoel says

    Reminds me of a friend. Who I strongly suspect has a gambling problem after comparing notes to one of his exes.

  10. says

    On the one hand: scientists, no matter how good and no matter how poor they are at actual science, are still people – and as a result they’re prone to human foibles and failings. Which means at least some of them are going to have the level of entitlement on a personal level to be right abusive bastards (or right abusive bitches, or right abusive whosits, because this sort of thing isn’t limited to one gender. It’s just that those gender presentations which aren’t read as cis-masculine tend to have a harder time getting away with such blatant examples of exploitation and manipulation). So, not as surprising as you’d think, given the number of scientists out there – even if you just stick to the background level of RABa/Bi/Wh in the population, you’re going to run across more than a few.

    On the other hand – it always hurts to have your trust betrayed.

    On the third hand, the good thing is people are more willing to believe the victims of abuse when they say they’ve been abused these days. We’re getting smarter at spotting the abusers, we’re getting smarter at recognising abuse, and the internet provides an unparalleled platform to allow people to compare their stories, recognise commonalities, and get out before they get in too deep. There is hope for a better future; one where this sort of behaviour is treated as the sort of social cancer it is, and treated with the seriousness it deserves. We’re getting there, slowly but surely – and the pace of change has definitely picked up in this regard over the past few decades.

  11. says

    Eh. If we judged the future prospects of humanity based on people like Scott Lewis, we would be wondering how the hell we ever managed to get out of the Stone Age.

    I’m not oblivious to the problems we face, or the ability of bad actors to screw everything up for us, but I am still optimistic nonetheless. Bad people make for good news headlines. Good people and good works, typically don’t, so we tend to get a very skewed view of the world. Even in the face of one bad deed. there are often many good deeds that go unremarked outside of the immediate impact zone.

  12. Mark Dowd says


    That doesnt make much sense to me. That seems like a car wash that refuses to take Chevrolets to protest the GM ignition switch thing.

    In order words, consumers deciding to boycott a product by not buying it is a different thing than 3rd party vendors refusing to support it.

  13. Kreator says

    It makes perfect sense, and the best proof is that it worked: the Oculus people are in damage control as of now. Your analogy is faulty: it’s not like car washes refusing to take Chevrolets, more like auto mechanics refusing to work with them.

  14. Mark Dowd says

    He’s already sold the company though. What are the new owners going to do, take his money back? They’re the wrong people to have in damage control for that shit, because they didn’t do the damage.

    “it’s not like car washes refusing to take Chevrolets, more like auto mechanics refusing to work with them.”

    A distinction without a difference to me.

  15. Kreator says

    Luckey now works for Facebook, which owns Oculus, so at least he still benefits from it in an indirect way.

    “it’s not like car washes refusing to take Chevrolets, more like auto mechanics refusing to work with them.”
    A distinction without a difference to me.

    Here I must apologize and admit that I made a mistake, as I really didn’t understand your analogy. General Motors doesn’t have much of a presence in my country, so when I read “GM ignition switch” I assumed it was a part for Chevrolet vehicles, codenamed “GM” for some reason. I admit I’m entirely ignorant about cars, I never had much interest in them unless they transformed into robots.