Smart Thinking

The Baloney Detection Toolkit

DIRECTOR OF THE SKEPTICS SOCIETY Michael Shermer describes his 10-point Baloney Detection Toolkit.

DIRECTOR OF THE SKEPTICS SOCIETY Michael Shermer describes his 10-point Baloney Detection Toolkit.

Shermer publishes Skeptic Magazine and is the author of Why People Believe Weird Things and The Mind of the Market.

Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition and other confusions of our time

Mind Of The Market

Utility of a Baloney Detection Toolkit

A Baloney Detection Toolkit is a useful tool in a world of biases, fallacious arguments, hype cycles and spin doctors. It is a simple technique to have ‘front of mind’ when evaluating unproven claims.

Baloney Detection Toolkit


10 point Baloney Detector

Video: Michael Shermer explaining the 10 points of the Baloney Detection Kit

Shermer at TED Talks gives an amusing speech on pseudoscience and odd beliefs.

Video: Michael Shermer at TED Talks “Why people believe strange things.”

Further reading at The Scientific American:

Further Reading on Critical Thinking from Michael Shermer

By Steve Nimmons

Steve is a Certified European Engineer, Chartered Engineer, Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, Royal Society of Arts, Linnean Society and Society of Antiquaries of Scotland. He is an Electric Circle Patron of the Royal Institution of Great Britain, a Liveryman and Freeman of London and serves on numerous industry panels. He is a member of Chatham House, the Royal United Services Institute and the Chartered Institute of Journalists.

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