Posted by: Loren Coleman on January 11th, 2013
Dr. Melba Ketchum addresses the media about the leak of information from her Bigfoot DNA study in November 2012.
I, Loren Coleman, have been here at Cryptomundo since 2005. No matter how many times I’ve said it, I am merely a blogger here. Not an owner.
Cryptomundo was founded by Craig Woolheater and a relative of his. He bought out that relative a few years ago. We all must agree that Craig was able to break open the world of cryptozoology and Bigfoot commentary through blogging online. Many have followed in his footsteps.
Nevertheless, social media evolution sometimes causes missteps and misunderstandings. Great confusion has existed at Cryptomundo since Craig decided to get rid of the individual headers for “CryptoZoo News” for me and the titled subblog titles for others. I disagreed with that decision, but as Craig clearly let me know, it was his to make, as other decisions have been too.
The specific markers allowed the writings from the four initial bloggers (Rick Noll, John Kirk, Craig Woolheater & Loren Coleman), plus guest writers, to be identified immediately. I never was sure why the action was done to remove them, but I assumed it was for some branding and traffic numbers for Cryptomundo alone. I never experienced more numbers helping me, but I’ve been over that often. I wrote about whatever old, new, current event, or thought story hit my fancy. I tried to share my interests beyond the “let’s go chase Bigfoot” trend, and broaden the cryptozoological horizons. I would write often and with passion, daily, not just infrequently.
But what happened due to the removal of the individual headers caused many people to think that everything and anything written at Cryptomundo was penned by me. That has never been the case.
In the last year or so, Craig began adding more and more people who merely link to their own blogs. Again, it was a decision I did not consider helpful and one I disagreed with for several reasons. One was that I saw it leading to what has occurred: In-depth content has nearly vanished from this blog. This has caused still further diluting of what Cryptomundo use to be.
Still, however, people point to me as if I am behind this all.
In recent months, even Dr. Melba Ketchum and her supporters have blamed me for critiques of her DNA work that were not mine. Considering I have refrained saying anything about the Ketchum story for most of the year, I am flabbergasted by this. I’ve been patiently waiting for the results for years? Why would I jump the gun before the story heat up around Thanksgiving 2012?
But online comment makers love to make gross overstatements. Let me give you a recent illustration. After I appeared on Coast to Coast, I was labeled by Dr. Ketchum’s followers as a “basher” for saying we need to practice some caution in this field.
Since the beginning of 2013, I’ve now read that blogs and other outlets have decided to “discuss Loren Coleman and his roll [sic] in bashing Melba Ketchum’s research.”
I am willing to be open to criticisms, if I am actually the source of unfair skepticism. But I wondered if this, once again, was another mistaken identification of everything written at Cryptomundo as being by me. So, I did an analysis of the postings involving Dr. Ketchum for the entire year of 2012, and came up with these totals:
Craig Woolheater posted 15;
Guy Edwards posted 10; and
I, Loren Coleman posted 8.
What are the Ketchum topics of which I posted about?
I posted straightforward, non-commentary notices that Ketchum was going to appear at a PNW conference (sharing her bio, without edits or comments). I posted that she was going to be on a C2C radio program, and that I was asked to be on C2C to update the Ketchum-DNA news. I shared notes on how the DNA news was bringing out the “haters” (those against her, which I thought was a situation not allowing healthy discussion of Bigfoot DNA). I shared a media insight about how the DNA news was going viral, and how a Ketchum critic made a mistake using a Ray Wallace fake footprint in a graphic against Ketchum. I also, again, without commentary, shared Burtsev’s reasons for releasing the news of the alleged result and posting, without edits, Dr. Ketchum’s statement/press release. I posted a short intellectual consideration on the human-ape question, in relationship to Dr. Ketchum’s statements.
Oh, yes, I also shared, without any negativity, the sad news of the passing of her colleague, Richard Stubstad. That was a straight obituary, sharing the accomplishments that the man achieved during his lifetime, without judgement and without critiquing him.
But in the end, the only editorializing I did about the Ketchum leaks are my writings that it has been unfortunate and premature to have engaged in a public airing of this matter – now.
For those who have been following who has been authoring what postings at Cryptomundo have been appearing about Ketchum, you will have noticed I have been very careful to not say too much about 109 data bits we know not much about or the analysis of them.
The essence of the only statement I’ve expressed on the Dr. Melba Ketchum matter was given on December 6, 2012, here, when I wrote at Cryptomundo and repeated on Coast to Coast AM that I agreed with John Hawks’ memorable quote:
“One of the most pointed and yet considered opinions was posted by anthropologist John Hawks on his blog. He wrote, in part: ‘Until I see the data, I am withholding judgment….No data, no discovery.’”
“I’ve said some things, similar to John Hawks, that comments on the results are best held back until the paper is published and the findings are in.”
I would suggest those that feel I am “bashing” Dr. Ketchum may not be reading statements by or from me.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.