Skeptics Declare Cryptomundo Not As Bad As

Posted by: Loren Coleman on November 9th, 2011

Do “Skeptics” really consider Cryptomundo “worse” than Conservapedia, but not as bad as

Correspondent Joe writes that “some random bloke* on the internet” damns us with faint praise: “Cryptomundo only ranks as #8 on our list because, let’s face it, cryptozoology is not exactly the most harmful of pseudosciences.”

Here is their full description on their “Top 10 Worst Anti-Science Websites”:

#8 Cryptomundo
Alexa ranked #41,800
Google PageRank 5

Run by cryptozoologists Loren Coleman, Craig Woolheater, John Kirk, and Rick Noll, Cryptomundo promotes virtually every mythical beast as being a real living animal. Cryptozoology may be a fun and illustrious hobby for some, but its method of beginning with your desired conclusion and working backwards to find anecdotes that might support it is pretty much the opposite of the scientific method. Cryptomundo only ranks as #8 on our list because, let’s face it, cryptozoology is not exactly the most harmful of pseudosciences. It’s more of a weekend lark for enthusiasts of the strange.

Cryptomundo’s forum moderators have something of a notorious reputation for editing comments posted by site visitors, and for deleting comments that express skeptical points of view. Some skeptical commenters have reported even being banned completely from the forums, not for spamming or trolling, but just being consistently skeptical.


Of course, just saying that we are “anti-science” does not make it a reality or factual. We respectfully disagree, but I guess we are honored with the “faint praise.”

BTW, regarding getting your data right, Rick Noll hasn’t been associated with the blog for years, and John Kirk is only an infrequent blogger here, due to family issues. Many other individuals write postings found here more routinely, but then, if these “skeptics” really knew anything about the site, they would have more correctly framed their “award” with the facts.

The author of this “worst list” is Brian Dunning, who says of himself:

By profession I am a computer scientist, both as a Silicon Valley CTO and as a consulting engineer. My only academic credential that bears any scrutiny is in Writing for Film and Television from University of California, Los Angeles. I also have a credential that doesn’t bear any scrutiny — and you’ll find it at Thunderwood College. I’m also a member of the National Association of Science Writers.

I’ve written a few books and numerous technical articles. I decided to put this experience to good use, and created the Skeptoid podcast. I’m also one of the featured bloggers on SkepticBlog, the official blog of the prospective TV series The Skeptologists which I host.

I have a great wife, two terrific kids who are smarter than me, a cat who’s dumber than me, and some assorted koi who haven’t yet been evaluated. We all live happily on the beautiful and sunny southern California coast.

Below is an image of Mr. Dunning made freely available for the media. I assume that is not a Sea Serpent behind him, but a rock:

Thanks for the tip from Joe.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. 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. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

28 Responses to “Skeptics Declare Cryptomundo Not As Bad As”

  1. flame821 responds:

    Forgive the internet-speak, but to me it sounds like the author of that little article is butt hurt over something a moderator here has done. Either that or he’s never actually read this site and many of our comments. True, some readers do believe everything posted on YouTube but MOST of the comments here do the exact opposite. In fact we tend to be a bit harsh.

    As for the moderation, you guys do spell it out pretty plainly that you have a narrow tolerance for some behaviors but you do tend to warn people first, or at least post your reasons in association with the questionable post. To be honest the only time it seemed to get out of hand was when the posts involved Finding Bigfoot and the fall out associated with a cast member. Those moderations and some of the moderator’s comments where unduly harsh and a bit one sided but we’re all human and these things will happen every so often.

  2. mandors responds:

    Cryptozoology is a “pseudoscience.” Hmm, I thought that was climatology.

  3. Chris Mcgee via Facebook responds:


  4. Sophie Wilder via Facebook responds:

    Damned with faint praise.

  5. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Oh goody! So since we’re harmless we are tolerated. Not until they find out our *real* intention to find Bigfoot is to assemble an army of giant apes that will conquer the world!


  6. RayGra responds:

    Hard not to be discouraged by the writings of so many self-professed skeptics these days. The number of half-truths or misunderstandings in this fellow’s piece indicate he didn’t even bother to study this site very closely before drawing up his list. So much for critical thinking and the “scientific method.”

  7. Redrose999 responds:

    Flame821 hit the nail on the head. Someone got burned because they weren’t agreed with a 100 percent.

    As a long time lurker and member of Cryptomundo, I’d say 8 years lurking and 4 years actually a member even though I rarely posted, I’ve only seen a few all out wars, Loren, and Craig have been honest with the editing, they will warn there will be edits if things get heated, or to be blunt, thoughtless or rude.

    I know many folks here who are skeptical. Several of them regulars, and their opinion is valued, unless that is they state it without respect for the other opinions around. Yes we flame skepticism a great deal. As Flame821 said, we are skeptical of most posts. Look at Finding Bigfoot posts for example, or the posts on various youtube vids… LOL! I suspect this is about the fact that we agree to disagree with the “100 percent” skeptical opinion that insists we all agree with it and not have a sense of wonder or out of the box thinking on these matters.

  8. Redrose999 responds:

    Perhaps I will add, that the writer in question might have an issue that our moderators are respectful to people who are not mainstream in their opinions and that perhaps they give them a chance to discuss their ideas rather than shunning them and mocking their work as they do in skeptical literature. Here on Cryptomundo, both Believers and Skeptics are treated the same. Neither is right, and neither is wrong, it’s just an opinion to discuss.

  9. Terry W. Colvin responds:

    The hostile skeptics and outright debunkers makes it difficult to discuss any topic in a free exchange of ideas. This and just being ignored are irritating aspects of human nature dealing with new data, new theories, and even tweaking old theories. This denial of the damned data is evident during my search through the Project Blue Book files and in presenting the speculations made by Bill Corliss in his Science Frontiers newsletters. I am finding almost as much resistance to the latter from the Forteans/forteans as I do from the skeptics on the Skeptic list. I guess that faint praise and even mentioning Cryptomundo are positives. I have been remiss in not checking your site more often Loren. This is no reflection on you or your work. I believe you are doing good work. Best wishes, Terry

  10. GuRuZombi responds:

    I know you get flak from time to time, Mr. Coleman but I want you to know that I have only seen respect and professionalism on this website and have been proud to be a reader and follower of your work. I don’t feel this guy did much research on the website, and I feel that you take these sort of critiques with a grain of salt, but I wanted to say I think you and others who contribute to this site do a great job and to keep up the hard work you do.

  11. Logan Schuster via Facebook responds:

    Hey Loren sounds like that’s the best you’ll get out of the uptight skeptics ;D As a skeptic myself I still love reading Cryptomundo because you typically take the objective view. I love the blobsquatch articles!!

  12. sasquatch responds:

    I had a hilarious post about Gamera edited out once. Still can’t figure out why. The sense of humor around here seems limited to dumb comics posted sometimes. But, it’s a fun site even tho’ no-one here knows squat but me. WARNING; Last statement probably not funny enough.

  13. Kopite responds:

    Grumpy spoil sport cynics (oh I’m sorry I mean “skeptics”) are a minority sub culture themselves and I really don’t care WHAT they think.

    They are of little consequence to me.

  14. DWA responds:

    I am not sure I have ever seen a more ignorant description of anything. 15th-century speculative animals were more true to life.

    “Anti-science” PRECISELY describes the “skeptical” take on cryptids. I am of course leaving out of that tarbrush the true skeptics on this question, who are required to keep this field honest as it struggles with its fringes – given ridiculous prominence by scoftics – to become a science.

    Before I respect anybody’s opinion, I have to at least consider them reasonably well informed. This? NOT.

  15. DWA responds:

    And I’d have to add that I agree with flame821 that somebody got miffed here.

    Likely it was about coming on as a buttstoopid flaming scoftic and getting called on it.

    I’ve looked over the James Randi Forums. I would never even attempt to post there. It’s worthless for a dissenting opinion that values the scientific method, among other things, to do so. That is as far into scofticism as I intend to go. On crypto topics, at least, it is a modern Flat Earth Society. Here is a site that truly welcomes real skepticism, and even gives the scoftics a shot at enlightenment.

    Some of them, however, simply refuse to get it, which is life, I guess.

  16. DWA responds:

    And I had to add one more thing (think out a whole post? Me? Naaahhh):

    I am not sure that I could describe scofticism more succinctly than to say that “its method of beginning with your desired conclusion and working backwards to find anecdotes that might support it is pretty much the opposite of the scientific method.”

  17. Redrose999 responds:

    Perhaps the Skeptic in question has forgotten that the scientific method is about the dialog and not agreeing all the time? Without dialog, and exploration into “fringe” topics nothing gets done. They seem to have forgotten that well respected fields like zoology and theoretical sciences were considered pseudo- science in the past.

  18. jayman responds:

    I used to consider myself a Skeptic with a capital S, and was a member of a well-known skeptic organization, but no more. Most of these “Skeptics” believe all kinds of things, and summarily dismiss others, without personally examining any evidence. This kind or “skepticism” is a worldview and an appeal to authority.
    I am now more inclined to withhold judgement on things I haven’t investigated myself. I’m still a skeptic, but with a small “s”.

  19. red_pill_junkie responds:

    I am now more inclined to withhold judgement on things I haven’t investigated myself. I’m still a skeptic, but with a small “s”

    That translates to Smart with a capital “S” in my book.

    But then again, what do I know? after all, I believe in Bigfoot & stuff… 😉

  20. TheForthcoming responds:

    flame821 said it best.

  21. cwinters responds:

    I like to be skeptical. If I wasn’t, I’d be a Christian (lol). But in all honesty, the worst type of skeptic is the one who takes skepticism to be not changing your beliefs based on new data and summarily rejecting anything that doesn’t conform with the worldview you created for yourself.
    There are cryptids that have been proven real. Cryptids are just things that are extremely rare; some of them may be real and others just speculation. Half the fun, though, is figuring that part out.

  22. Hapa responds:

    Cryptozoology being the least damaging of Pseudosciences: It was damaging to discover the Kraken/Giant Squid? Or the Duck Billed Platypus? It’s damaging to learn?

  23. DWA responds:

    Hapa: that’s my question too.

    The scariest thing about scoftics is their apparent inability to appreciate that learning new things is fun! Every piece of evidence, they yell “that isn’t proof!” (duh…talk about inability to learn an *old* thing, like the diff between evidence and proof). THIS IS ALL THEY DO. Of course it’s not proof, dummies! Do you think that when the lawyer shouts, HERE’S THE EYEWITNESS! the judge bangs the gavel and yells GUILTY!?!?!? OF COURSE NOT!

    (Sorry. Scoftics are all-caps dense.)

    We accumulate EVIDENCE, and pursue it until we have what the judge and jury – or in the case of crypto, science -accepts as PROOF.

    The pile for at least two cryptids – sasquatch and yeti – has gotten higher than it’s ever gotten for any other species before confirmation by science. In other words: everything else we know that much about HAS BEEN CONFIRMED AS REAL. Westerners with scientific cred vouch for the orang pendek; THEY’VE SEEN IT. (ALL-CAPS DENSE, scoftics are.) At least two other hairy hominoids are vouched for as real by at least a few scientists. Do the scoftics challenge the scientists? OF COURSE NOT. They go to the far fringes of True Belief, the UFO/woowoo bandwidth, and CARP AT THOSE PEOPLE. And call them the sum and substance of crypto! HOW DENSE CAN YOU GET?

    (all caps, man.)

    The skullular density, inability to understand how science works (while lecturing cryptos who know much more than they do on the topic), and stultifying insistence on the mundane at all costs will never cease to amaze me.

    It truly does take all kinds to make a world. And sometimes that’s not a good thing.

    I don’t know – I honestly do not and will not ever know – how minds such as Jeff Meldrum’s and John Bindernagel’s even tolerate having to deal with the scoftic mindset.

    I’m glad I can just freely insult them. Their particular brand of know-nothingism – Exhibit A above – deserves no more, and no less, than ridicule. If the public’s basic scientific understanding didn’t run to “ignorant,” scoftics wouldn’t have a toe to stand on. Instead, the inmates run the asylum.

    Did I get exercised enough? Thanks for that, Hapa. That’s my job here. Everybody else can be polite. There are just some subjects on which I can’t be. Know-nothing cynicism is one.

  24. Hapa responds:


    I understand. I had originally written a lot more for that post, including a mention of the fact that many of the so-called facts in the so-called doc “Religulous” by Bill Maher, was taken by many hook line and sinker, despite the fallacies (anybody who knows their stuff about Egyptian Myth would spit out whatever they might be drinking with more force than Linda Blair’s vomit if they saw the scene comparing the stories of Egyptian God Horus with Jesus Christ (drum roll) Virgin birth, crucifixion, 12 followers, fisherman, walking on water, dying for sins, and baptized;all said about Horus, according to Bill “PhD” Maher. Yet Crucifixion alone was invented in Persia, not Egypt, and was done so about 600BC, long after Horus’ tale was told. Osiris was indeed his father, whom conceived Horus the old fashioned way, Horus was never stated to have had 12 followers, was not a fisherman, did not die for the sins of others, was not baptized by Anup the Baptizer, and it was Orion, the Greek mythological giant, not Horus, who walked on water, yet when it comes to Sasquatch, the evidence of which is actually based on facts, as opposed to lies or cerebral laziness, people’s minds become thicker than Mt Everest: they cannot be penetrated by reality. I understand your pain.

    BTW: Just in case people think I’m some Neo-con: Bill Maher is a good comedian, from what I’ve been told, and his show “Politically Incorrect”, which was canceled years ago, was one of my favorite things to watch.

  25. DWA responds:

    Let’s keep ranking here.

    Click on that Source link above. OK, now read the blog ‘til you get to the link

    “See this screen capture of Cryptomundo’s amusing criticism of my inclusion of their site.”

    Click that. His point?

    John Kirk and Rick Noll – who almost never post here, as Loren noted, but he apparently doesn’t read it enough to know that – have placeholder links and another line or two, that last got edited oh, why bother? they might check back in someday, right? linking them to the site. So see???? THEY’RE HERE! J’ACC– USE…


    THAT is what scoftics find exciting and amusing. That is the essential depth of their ‘research.’ No wonder the idea of animals we didn’t already know about 50 years ago is so uncomfortable for them.

    You’ve watched the P/G film enough times to change your mind and think your initial impression of man-in-suit was wrong? [raises hand] You’ve gone over to the dark side! We don’t have to listen to why you changed your mind; we are The Church Of Only What’s Real Now, and you are excommunicated!

    Don’t do research; believe the world is boring. Scofticism, in a nutshell.

    (Sorry. I apologize. I do have a bit of a tendency to pick on the defenseless more than I should, and it may grate on the nice people here. What. Come on. You NEVER had fun picking on somebody?)

  26. jan09 responds:

    Seems to me that this person was just intent on slotting in a cryptozoological site on his list. A quick search for the most prominent one ensued, followed by cutting and pasting some outdated info about the contributors, then plugging the name ‘Cryptomundo’ into a pretty vague, generic criticism that reads like it was already written before the site was even chosen. Really not even worth refuting.

  27. somebodyssquatchingme responds:

    It may sound odd, but the thought of unknown animals, even big ones lurking among us, doesn’t keep me attracted to this site. It’s actually the unabashed hubris of mankind that interests me more. So many critics base their points of view on the “If we haven’t discovered it by now, it can’t exist” theory. I guess these are the same folks who didn’t think the Titanic could sink, or that the large blips on the Hawaiian radar couldn’t possibly be enemy aircraft.

    To me, the study of cryptozoology is equally the study of man’s understanding of himself.

  28. DWA responds:


    Actually, it is worth refuting, for the very reason that what you are saying was done is precisely how the skeptic fringe “researches” and “analyzes” all cryptozoological topics. This is a classic example of the depth and rigor of their process.

    Which is why I keep saying that engaging the skeptical fringe is ridiculous and we shouldn’t even bother. So yeah, you’re right. 😉

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