What’s the Harm?
My first and best known skeptic project is the website What’s the Harm? It is a catalog of actual cases of people suffering physical, medical, financial or other harm because of their beliefs in pseudoscience, the paranormal and other concepts that are not supported by science.
I readily admit that the site is populated by anecdotes, which (as all good skeptics know) are not proof of anything. However, humans are storytelling creatures. We find stories compelling. This is why purveyors of nonsense often pepper their websites with anecdotes and testimonials. The hope is that skeptics can use What’s the Harm as a resource when discussing these topics. If someone asks you, “Well, if you say it doesn’t work, what’s the harm in my believing it?” now you know where to go to find an answer to that question.
A major update of What’s the Harm is planned for 2012.
If you would like to know more about the history of the site, you might enjoy this presentation I gave for the Boston Skeptics back in 2009:
(Thanks to Maggie McFee of the Boston Skeptics for producing the video).
If you have found What’s the Harm to be useful and would like to support my efforts, you can do so simply by purchasing something for yourself or a loved one at Amazon.com using the banner link below. You pay nothing extra and I get a small commission. Thanks.
If you need some product suggestions, I’ve curated a selection of skeptical books and videos in the What’s the Harm online store, which also works through Amazon.
Thank you to everyone for all their continued support.