What we're about

Skeptics in the Pub (or Sceptics in the Pub, if you prefer) are groups which meet and converse in the UK and beyond, usually gathering once every month.

The event was founded in London, UK by Dr Scott Campbell in 1999, for all those interested in science, history, psychology, philosophy, investigative journalism and how to examine extraordinary claims of all types.

A speaker (or number of speakers) is invited each month to present a topic of interest, which is followed by a discussion in a relaxed and friendly pub atmosphere.

We make no claims to balance, and actively promote science, freedom of expression and secular humanism. This means we often end up talking about superstition, religious fundamentalism, censorship and conspiracy theory.

The following definition (http://skepticblog.org/2008/11/17/skeptic-the-name-thing-again/), due to Steven Novella, pretty much sums up where we are coming from:

A skeptic is one who prefers beliefs and conclusions that are reliable and valid to ones that are comforting or convenient, and therefore rigorously and openly applies the methods of science and reason to all empirical claims, especially their own.

A skeptic provisionally proportions acceptance of any claim to valid logic and a fair and thorough assessment of available evidence, and studies the pitfalls of human reason and the mechanisms of deception so as to avoid being deceived by others or themselves.

Skepticism values method over any particular conclusion.

In short skepticism is an intellectual speciality that is grounded in science and the humanities and includes any knowledge that deals with the nature of knowledge and belief, critical thinking, the foibles of the human intellect, and deception.

Upcoming events (3)

Online Talk - How QAnon Became a Movement, Cult & Conspiracy - Mike Rothschild

Join us at twitch.tv/sitp for this online event, hosted by a collaboration of Skeptics groups around the country.

Mike Rothschild, a journalist specializing in conspiracy theories, has been collecting stories about the deadly QAnon movement for years, and through interviews with QAnon converts, apostates, and victims, as well as psychologists, sociologists, and academics, he is uniquely equipped to explain the movement and its followers. In The Storm Is Upon Us, he takes readers from the background conspiracies and cults that fed the Q phenomenon to its embrace by right-wing media and Donald Trump, through the rending of families as loved ones became addicted to Q’s increasingly violent rhetoric, to the storming of the Capitol, and on.

Mike Rothschild is a journalist focused on the intersections between internet culture and politics as seen through the dark glass of conspiracy theories. He has specialized in an investigation of the QAnon conspiracy cult since its inception in 2018, and is one of the first journalists to reveal its connections to past conspiracy theories and scams. Rothschild’s expertise has led to his becoming a leading commentator on the subject for The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR, CNN, MSNBC, the BBC, and elsewhere.

About Skeptics in the Pub Online
We are a coalition of UK-based Skeptics groups. Formed as the Covid-19 epidemic brought our country to a standstill, we are working to deliver high-quality online events focussing on Science, reason, and critical thinking.

New to Skeptics in the Pub or Twitch or both?
We anticipate that Twitch or SitP may be new for some of you so we will have *early doors at 6:45* to welcome new attendees and answer any questions you may have.
A useful guide to Twitch here: https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-twitch-4143337
You don't need a Twitch account to watch the talk only if you want to take part in the chat.
You won't need an account to ask questions in the Q&A though.
More details on accessibility, inclusion and safety here: https://sitp.online/online-safety

To find out more about Skeptics locally:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/HighWycombeSkeptics/) page and follow us (https://twitter.com/wycombesitp

The Art of More: How Mathematics Created Civilisation - Michael Brooks

Join us at twitch.tv/sitp for this online event, hosted by a collaboration of Skeptics groups around the country.

We have a problem with mathematics. Half of the UK’s adults live with nothing more than the mathematical skills they learned at primary school, and many people experience a tangible fear when facing anything to do with numbers. The root of the problem lies in the fact that no one is ever taught what maths actually is.

In this talk, Michael Brooks lays out the essence of mathematics, explains why it muddles our brains and explores the reasons humans have persevered with it when other species rarely bother counting beyond 3.
Animals tend to refer to this uncharted territory as just “more”, but it is here that human uniqueness is found. Once we understand how mathematics – the art of more — connects ancient Babylon to modern banking, world heritage architecture to the worldwide web, and the I-Ching to the iPhone, we can begin to see mathematics as more than just a maze of numbers: we see it as the pinnacle of human achievement."

Michael Brooks is a science writer with a PhD in quantum physics, and the author of several books, including the bestselling 13 Things That Don’t Make Sense and The Quantum Astrologer’s Handbook, a Daily Telegraph Book of the Year.

About Skeptics in the Pub Online
We are a coalition of UK-based Skeptics groups. Formed as the Covid-19 epidemic brought our country to a standstill, we are working to deliver high-quality online events focussing on Science, reason, and critical thinking.

New to Skeptics in the Pub or Twitch or both?
We anticipate that Twitch or SitP may be new for some of you so we will have *early doors at 6:45* to welcome new attendees and answer any questions you may have.
A useful guide to Twitch here: https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-twitch-4143337
You don't need a Twitch account to watch the talk only if you want to take part in the chat.
You won't need an account to ask questions in the Q&A though.
More details on accessibility, inclusion and safety here: https://sitp.online/online-safety

To find out more about Skeptics locally:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/HighWycombeSkeptics/) page and follow us (https://twitter.com/wycombesitp

Online Talk - The Woos and Woes of Wikipedia - Annika Harrison

Join us at twitch.tv/sitp for this online event, hosted by a collaboration of Skeptics groups around the country.

Wikipedia is known as an international encyclopaedia. But is it also a worldwide network with secret members, seeking to influence humankind? Or is it a web forum, where one can publish their opinion? How does Wikipedia work? And how can you make a difference?
Even among skeptics Wikipedia is still looked at with scrutiny. Is it reliable? Are there mechanisms and processes to make Wikipedia more valid and protected?

The Skeptics in the Pub Online presentation will answer all these questions and more.

Annika Harrison is a member of GWUP, the German skeptics organisation. She is also a proud member of the European Skeptics Podcast (ESP) and writes interviews and reports for the online section of the Skeptical Inquirer. She joined Guerrilla Skepticism on Wikipedia in 2017 and most enjoys recording audio introductions to further the richness of pages concerning Skepticism.
Professionally, she is a teacher of English and history at a comprehensive school close to Cologne, Germany. Privately, she is married and a mother of one.

About Skeptics in the Pub Online
We are a coalition of UK-based Skeptics groups. Formed as the Covid-19 epidemic brought our country to a standstill, we are working to deliver high-quality online events focussing on Science, reason, and critical thinking.

New to Skeptics in the Pub or Twitch or both?
We anticipate that Twitch or SitP may be new for some of you so we will have *early doors at 6:45* to welcome new attendees and answer any questions you may have.
A useful guide to Twitch here: https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-twitch-4143337
You don't need a Twitch account to watch the talk only if you want to take part in the chat.
You won't need an account to ask questions in the Q&A though.
More details on accessibility, inclusion and safety here: https://sitp.online/online-safety

To find out more about Skeptics locally:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/HighWycombeSkeptics/) page and follow us (https://twitter.com/wycombesitp

Photos (197)