The goal of this meetup was to attract a group that was more interested in actually doing something more than socialising in a pub. I think this was achieved. Those that showed up had info and ideas to share. There were also others that expressed interest in attending but were unable to do so with it being on a Monday so I'm thinking of doing a similar schedule as the Christchurch meetups. These were held once a fortnight on alternating Mondays and Tuesdays. I'll poll the group about this.
Anyway, the idea was to find out what people wanted to tackle and to figure out what tools were available to us to do that. We managed this with a few surprising things to note.
The things we want to tackle;
- Gerson Therapy
- Power Balance
- Rudolph Steiner's quackery
- Anti vaxers
- Alt-med promoted by mainstream doctors
- Climate Change denial
- Power of prayer
- Co-option of the term "Skeptic"
- Pop psychology
- Bad History
- Organic foods
- Conspiracy theory around New Zealand history
- Physio - some of it is evidence based, not all
- Ear Candles
The second round of discussion was based around the tools that we have available to us to combat this. The list wasn't quite as extensive but useful none the less. In no particular order;
- Following up on comment threads
- Education and Science Select Committee
- Oral submissions to Parliament
- Ensure we have evidence for anything we do combat
- Carefully address claims
- Building analogies that don't offend and can't be argued
- SitP Profiles
- Public Personalities
- Advertising Standards Authority
- Close Up
- Knightingale Collaboration
- (Legal?) Precedent
If anyone wants to discuss any of these feel free to do so in the Forums.
The next meeting is yet to be planned. I'm still under quite a bit of time pressure. If anyone wants to step up and set it up I'm happy to do that. All I ask is that we make the next meeting a Tuesday. I'm wanting to alternate Monday/Tuesday meetings for this one. There's a few people that I know are interested that can't make a Monday meeting.