Some “Skeptics” Don’t Get It

Posted by: Loren Coleman on September 22nd, 2011

“Bobby The Paranormal Skeptic,” (a/k/a Bobby Nelson, above) writing for “The Bent Spoon Magazine,” penned a decidedly distasteful column entitled “Loren Coleman’s Cheap Attempt to get Hits on 9/11…” I certainly don’t view the universe the same way this guy does. Besides, he’s dead wrong about his facts.

Bobby posts these beginning passages:

Over at Cryptomundo, a website dedicated to all things cryptid related, owner and operator Loren Coleman wrote a post titled “9/11’s Forgotten Fatality: Robert Steele.”

Coleman shamelessly plugging his book, The Copycat Effect, pastes a paragraph about a man who was killed by an alligator attack in Florida.

Notes this:

I am failing to see how this attack is relevant at all to cryptozoology.

And ends with this:

Mr. Coleman I am sure you forgot about the 100,000 other deaths that occurred worldwide on 9/11/2001. This was a cheap, tasteless attempt to try and plug your book and get hits on your website…nothing more.

He and a supporter of his, Rachel Wolf (above), also used the opportunity to question why I closed the comments for that specific posting. Nelson writes in reply to Wolf talking of the closed comments:

…it just shows that Coleman will do anything to whore himself out. He will even post a story that has no significance to cryptozoology in order to get hits on his website. Its horrid.

I have submitted the following response to “The Bent Spoon.” I am not sure it will be posted by “Bobby The Paranormal Skeptic,” so I thought I would, at least, share my rebuttal with you, here:

Dear Bobby the Skeptic
Sorry to disappoint you, but I am merely a blogger at that site, Cryptomundo is not owned by me, and is not “my” website. I gain no benefit from extra hits, and I doubt most people read my posting that day. While you have every right to question my motives, I was sincerely expressing my condolences to a family whose loved one will forever be forgotten because he had the unfortunate coincidence of dying on 9/11. I am interested in the anniversary syndrome, and that’s why I wrote that posting on 9/11. I really could care less about hits.

Ben Radford gets why I write about the copycat effect, and understands the significance of media behavior contagion in reportage for weird animal news, which is part of what is discussed at Cryptomundo. The managing editor of the Skeptic Inquirer endorsed my book and wrote a blurb for the cover.

I closed the comments because the trolls, not the serious critics, were being disrespectful. I had other things to do on 9/11 than deal with idiots.

Being an old academic, I always cite my sources, even when they are my own books, and it has nothing to do with “selling” anything. You can’t be serious that you think anyone would buy my books after reading something I wrote in that column in 2011, referencing a 2004 book, can you? I certainly don’t think that way.

Loren Coleman

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.

35 Responses to “Some “Skeptics” Don’t Get It”

  1. bobbytheskeptic responds:

    Mr. Coleman,

    The only facts I seemed to have gotten wrong is me saying you are the owner and operator of cryptomundo…I can admit I was wrong in that aspect. However I still hold my stance that it was just a cheap and lame attempt to get hits for the site on 9/11.

    You quote me saying it had no relevance to cryptozoology, please correct me sir, how does an average size alligator killing a man in Florida have anything to do with hidden animals?

    Also what did Ben Radford have to do with my post? So he wrote a blurb for your book, he has written for The Bent Spoon…we are even…that is what we call a Red Herring, had nothing to do with my post and should not have been mentioned in your response.

    Have a nice day.

    Bobby the “Skeptic”

  2. Ulysses responds:

    You tell’ em Loren! Everyone just needs to criticize things they don’t understand and take a shot . I don’t know if it’s to feel good about themselves or to bring attention to something that is insignificant ( that’s called politics) in hopes it may elevate their status. It was a rememberance is all and not a shamless plug. Even the hardiest of us did not recognize Robert Steele. Of all the people involved in the Crypto Community yourself and Dr. Jeff Meldrum are the greatest figures of the day, both soft spoken, intelligent and never take aggressive attitudes or shots even to the detractors. You sir, are correct and in my opinion, the critic is a moron !

  3. Loren Coleman responds:

    Please excuse me folks while I explain this to Mr. Nelson.

    My mention of Ben Radford was in direct reply to explaining that this well-known skeptic understands the copycat effect and why I would be noting a fatal animal attack in a media contagion series, a topic of past discussion here at Cryptomundo and in the book cited.

    It appears I am being judged by someone who does not know my body of work here at Cryptomundo or in my books, or even my role here. This individual wishes to tell me what has relevance and what does not. It was my blog posting, and I happen to know what I was doing even if Mr. Nelson wishes to bring incorrect projections of this own to the table.

    If I am not the “owner and operator,” have no idea about how many hits Cryptomundo routinely gets, don’t get any benefit for increased traffic to the site, and have seen no fiscal rewards tied to any per increased readings of any blog I write, why would I care about increasing hits on 9/11? Give me a break. The “bent spoon skeptic” claim was dead wrong, and why can’t that just be admitted and then move on. A simple “I’m sorry” would have been enough.

  4. bobzilla responds:

    Well, as far as getting hits and having people come to your web site, up until now I’ve never heard of Bobby the skeptic, and now I have.

  5. bobbytheskeptic responds:

    **Again Ben Radford had nothing to do with my post, you brought him up just to name drop.**

  6. bobbytheskeptic responds:

    Lets prove my point more, in attempt to not get more hits on May 2nd 2011 when Bin Laden was killed you wrote this pathetic piece so please dont tell me it is not for hits.

  7. Loren Coleman responds:

    For those new to the site, please be alerted to the fact that insulting comments, as well as comments referring to private emails will be automatically deleted without editing or modification of the text to retain any of the comment.

    Please refer to the Terms of Use of Cryptomundo.

  8. bobbytheskeptic responds:

    Thats what I would figure, prove you wrong and it gets deleted.

  9. Terry W. Colvin responds:

    Loren, in my opinion you are doing very well researching the correlations between events. This fellow ”Bobby the Skeptic” may just represent a generational difference that does not allow for conversation. He seems most confrontational and full of piss and vinegar, admirable traits in some professions, less so in others.

  10. cryptic_hominid responds:

    why mr. nelson would write an article without a little bit of fact checking is beyond me. obviously, the bent spoon magazine is not a very reliable publication if they allow their contributors to write such nonsense. it’s one thing to have a difference of opinion, it’s quite another to blatantly lie or skew the facts just to get your point across. frankly, i’m a little embarrassed for bent spoon magazine.

  11. mandors responds:


    There’s an old southern saying, “Never wrestle with a pig in the mud, you get all dirty, and the pig likes it.” I fail to see why you gave someone who no one will ever hear of and website that no one goes to the time of day. Worse, this person appears to be a rather sad individual who not only be littles 9/11 but then has the gall to disingenuously defend it.


  12. PhotoExpert responds:

    Loren–Sounds like this guy does not know you in the least! And even if he has heard of you, no one person can know the intentions of another. I think he missed the point of your post on 9/11. What is obvious to most of us, he failed to realize. But don’t be too hard on him. He may just lack the intelligence to understand the point of your post. Or maybe he just doesn’t get it! It appears to me that he just doesn’t get it.

    I never heard of this Bobby guy before. I have heard of Loren Coleman! I think you were spot on when you posted about his “incorrect projections”. He actually is projecting what and why he would have posted a 9/11 post and not you. His projections speak volumes about the kind of person he is. Case closed!

    He also misses the point about why you brought up Ben Radford. It is painfully simple as to the reason why you brought up Ben. But this guy again misses the point and calls it a red herring. To those that miss points or lack the intelligence to understand, everything is a red herring because they can not make the logical connections needed to understand.

    From the way Bobby the Skeptic projects himself, I would say he is a miserable person. It is apparent he is unhappy with his own life and lack of success at his own website. That is why he projected the notion that you are trying to increase hits at Cryptomundo. He failed to see that you were honoring a man that was attacked and killed by an alligator on that fateful day. He misses the connection of rogue alligators and their relation to cryptozoology. He should rename himself from Bobby the Skeptic to Booby the Moron. That is just my opinion from reading what he posted at his site and here.

    I’m skeptical too! I am skeptical that Bobby is ever going to understand anything you are taking the time to explain to him. I am skeptical that he will ever “get it”. I am a believer too! I believe he will continue to project himself and his intention on other people because of the misery of his circumstance.

    Bobby, here’s a little hint for you: One does not elevate himself or his stature in life by attacking those more successful than he is. Loren’s successes stand by themselves. Your lack of success is just that. So go out and make a name for yourself on your own rather than by trying to criticize those who are more successful than you.

    But you probably won’t get what I am saying. You will probably say I am throwing you a red herring. Brother! Why do I even bother to try and help people who lack the intelligence to even grasp what I am saying? Nevermind Bobby, just carry on and continue down the path you are on! In other words, good luck to you Bobby, you will need it!

  13. bobbytheskeptic responds:

    All I see are followers that love Loren making a response…please someone tell me what fact checking I missed? The only one I missed I corrected in the response.

    Someone please tell me, what are the facts?

    a normal sized alligator killed a man in florida…oh no, thats a solid cryptid. Bin Laden gets killed, Loren writes a post “was bin laden as big as bigfoot?” haha again try telling me its not for hits loren. Also I write for about 6 blogs I am not an owner of and I can check the stats of each one.

  14. flame821 responds:

    Settle down, boys.

    I think the main problem here is Mr. Nelso is viewing the posts from a completely different world-view than Mr. Coleman writes from. I am very active in the Atheist community and I see how our world views color what we read and see. The same piece of evidence is view VERY differently by a die-hard skeptic vs a die-hard believer. Both have points to be made, sometimes both are right, other times both are wrong.

    From my reading of the article Mr Coleman was simply stating that Mr. Steele’s, the last fatality during a large string of fatal gator attacks, occurred on 9.11.01 and due to the overwhelming events of that day a story that ‘normally’ would have been broadcast widely was simply forgotten.

    It has nothing to do with increased web traffic and is, in fact, something that we discuss quite a bit here. How media coverage effects reporting of crypto events and descriptions. There are several rather lively threads regarding how the P-G film seems to have homogenized the description of Sasquatches when prior to its public release the physical descriptions of Sasquatch varied quite a bit more than they do now.

    As for the “Bin Laden the size of Bigfoot” this IS a crypto site. Of course the articles will try to have some sort of tie in to the main theme of the site. CNN has the daily news, we come here for a different perspective and you’ll have to trust that those of us who spend any amount of time on this site know how to separate fact from fiction. In fact, if you’ll look at some of the video threads you will notice a HIGH percentage of us look critically at the ‘evidence’ and have no problem calling a fraud a fraud.

    As for the censorship issue, while I personally prefer a free for all forum, I do understand why Mr. Woolheater wants to keep the site more civil than say Pharyngula or 4chan. The web is a huge place and there are as many different views, rules and social mores as there are people. Feel free to say your peace, but please adhere to the guidelines the hosts lay out for us. Coming into this site with a chip on your shoulder is not the way this site works, we had one fellow do that and it didn’t go well. Trolling also does not fly here, and while your readers may have thought they were simply speaking their minds in whichever way they choose, on THIS site it comes across as childish and more than slightly aggressive, save that for sites that allow and encourage it. On this site you’ll get much further with a reasoned argument than you ever will with sharp comments and rudeness.

  15. choppedlow responds:

    Dude, it’s not the fact checking. It’s the fact that you waste your time as a ‘skeptic’! Do you write about how you don’t agree with certain politics? At least that has to do with your life! Do you invest your time bashing those ‘loosers’ playing dungeons and dragons all day (sorry if I hit too close to home with any of these)? Do you write about any religions that you don’t agree with, and tell them that everything they hold dear to their hearts is all crap? I understand those who make a living off of deception, and by all means go and bust their balls! And everyone knows it’s ok to thing that bigfoots not real, and psychics are all over dramatic people. But what harm does anyone pose by thinking bigfoot is real, or that Nessie showed herself to them? I once saw a guy at a party doing the spoon bending thing, and all I thought was that he was a weirdo and needed to get a girlfriend! To be known as a ‘skeptic’ means to most people that you have a hard time dealing with those you don’t agree with, and for some reason you have to prove them wrong in order to make yourself look superior. Or, are you a ‘skeptic’ in order to be of public assistance? You are proving people wrong out of the kindness of your heart? You, and all the other ‘skeptics’ out there who think your right and everyone else is wrong, need to take up a hobby! Try stamps. But I’m sure after a while you will become skeptical of those who collect kitten stamps or stamps with cars on them, and have to write about how you are the one who is right! Get a life! The President of Iran is in the US! Go and bust his balls instead of a guy who has a website about sasquatch and giant worms in Mongolia!

  16. lordoftheonionrings responds:

    While an alligator may not be a criptid a man eating alligator is quite anomalous and therefore I don’t see a problem with posting it on a criptid website. Also whats so wrong with posting something that is relevant with a certain date or event. If Loren posted something that says Merry Christmas on Christmas day is that just a shameless attempt for hits? Not really seeing this guys argument here or why he would be upset. But then again that a lot of skeptic’s attitudes they are right you are wrong and nothing will tell them otherwise.

  17. Hapa responds:


    Dissing Coleman for supposedly advertising this blog on 9/11 by advertising your own on this website…hmmm.

    I’m guessing you wouldn’t have a problem if Ben Radford or Michael Shermer did a story about promoting skepticism or their own website based on an event that happened yet went unreported on 9/11. But if involves a Crypto-zoologist, UFologist, or the like: Blasphemer!

  18. Hapa responds:


    Loren Coleman, as stated, put that post out because of its relation to media mishaps combined with odd animal news. I have not yet read anything on his media copycat works, but it will no less tie into it.

    You might have heard of Operation Barooom , the American military operation to send elephants to a friendly village during the Vietnam war. The army filmed the elephants being airlifted by helicopters, and according to one source 28 reporters where also there.The one major reason it did not make the big time news that day: Martin Luther King was assassinated on the same day. Also the Vietcong was lured by the media coverage and killed most of the elephants at their drop off points. If things happened a “wittle” differently, it would have been big.

    (according to the first retelling, the operation got its name due to one of the elephants being tranquilized to keep it from panicking (it started to do this due to the plane revving up and beginning to take off the runway). Upon tranquilization, the Elephant passed gas, loudly, nearly shattering eardrums and shaking the entire plane. They had to turn back due to the smell: hence, Baroom lol )

    Since you showed up, Bobbytheskeptic, send along our way that Rachel Wolf: sure, she’s probably will just write the same old Pseudoskeptical usual, but at least she’s cute 🙂

  19. DNS responds:


    Any doofus can start a blog. Sometimes it seems like most of them do. Spewing nonsense about things they know nothing about seems to be what they most like to do with them.

  20. flame821 responds:

    Mr.Nelson, again I don’t think you understand this site. Bin Laden’s death was all over the news so OF COURSE it would make sense to tie a piece of major world news into an article. I’ve heard it’s referred to as “being topical”. Apparently you didn’t bother to read that article or you might have noticed that Mr. Coleman discusses Bin Laden’s REPORTED height, including the estimates given by the FBI as opposed to his ACTUAL height. How Bin Laden used this ‘mythology’ around him to his advantage and how once an idea takes hold it is very hard to counter. When people met Bin Laden in real life, even though it was obvious he was well under 6′ tall they would fall back on his reputation, his mythos and describe him as being 6’6″ despite the facts.

    Mr. Coleman then tied that into how eye witness sightings of Bigfoot might suffer from the same bias. How even though the witness may, on some level, realize that the animal they’ve seen is closer to 5’10’ or 6′ they will subconsciously assume it was much larger. This is not a new topic, BH commented (and was quoted in that article) “A creature covered with long hair always looks bigger than it really is,” . So please, explain to us how Mr. Coleman discussing eyewitness testimony and the inherent difficulties with obtaining objective facts from said testimony is somehow bad or wrong?

    I would think as a skeptic you would want people to be aware of their own confirmational bias, the faulty nature of the human memory and other issues that Mr. Coleman is bringing up. Or are you simply here to gnash your teeth and call names? Because at this point all I see you doing is pointing at articles and screaming “I do not approve, therefore it is wrong”

  21. Sadoronak responds:

    So Loren brought attention to the death of man by a large reptile whose passing was otherwise lost in the confusion, shock and outrage produced by 9-11? Wow, hang ’em high.

    Not sure if Bobby the Skeptic has been paying attention, but Cryptomundo has previously run stories on the sighting and killing of large aquatic reptiles, and while they don’t qualify as a cryptid themselves, problems encountered as a result of these animals sharing habitats with humans are not irrelevant to cryptozoological study. A number of cryptids encountered have displayed aggression and/or the absence of fear toward humans and domesticated animals. If these cryptids are real, they are as much a part of the ecosystem as those large gators are and we can expect similar challenges in coexisting with them. Yes, this may involve the death of humans.

    Loren’s article tied Steele’s death on September 11, 2001, an excerpt from his book, and a nod to victims of the 9/11 tragedy together in an interesting and not insensitive way.

    While Bobby the Skeptic may consider Loren’s blog tacky, I suspect his upset is largely manufactured, designed to capitalize on the lingering sensitivities associated with 9/11 and amounts to little more than a cheap attempt to score points with other skeptics who read his blog. It’s a low blow and makes Bobby himself as guilty of capitalizing on the 9/11 tragedy as he claims Loren is.

  22. shadowofadoubt responds:

    PS. thanks for the Plug.
    -Nicholas Callis
    co- founder of the Bent Spoon magazine

  23. Cryptoz responds:

    man i dont think the comment box has gotten this heated up since moneymaker was getting trashed a couple days before finding bigfoot premiered!

  24. Hapa responds:


    No lie! Usually we have calm, serene discussions here, not the Crypto-zoological version of CNN’s Crossfire. Of course, the debate here in this thread isn’t as bad as on EVC (evolution vs Creation) forum, and comes no where near close to their abortion threads (The only place on the Internet where you will find both Bigfoot and abortion: Cryptomundo!). Of course there is also the fact that we don’t know for sure who we are dueling with here (Is it Bobbytheseptic? Or is it somebody pretending to be him? How can we know for sure??). That makes you wonder when your debating a net personality or even (if you are lucky enough) someone claiming to be a celebrity (which Bbbytheseptic is not).

  25. joshtaylor responds:

    Trying to explain yourself to these types of people is like trying to explain quantum physics to a child. No matter how hard you try they just won’t get it because they live in their own little world where everything they say is true. He obviously doesn’t read the facts, instead deciding to skew everything to his own opinion.

  26. somebodyssquatchingme responds:


    Thanks for your posts about the forgotten deaths of folks we may not know. Although some skeptics may lump daily mortality into one large group, your continued research and awareness gives personal meaning to many of their lives, and makes your blog articles worth reading.

    Oh, and not every single blog has to be about the pending discovery of a cryptid animal, in order to be valid for your site. If you posted about a great recipe for pumpkin pie, I would still read it, because you have earned the respect of thousands over many decades of tireless work, and I trust your sensibility.

    Please continue with no apologies or explanations.

  27. Mausinn responds:

    Bobby Who? Bent what? Ah, I see, another site I won’t visit. From the pics and their missives, I won’t miss this brain trust.

  28. Craig Woolheater responds:


    An author who writes a blog and also promotes his own books!

    Say it ain’t so!

    The humanity!

  29. Craig Woolheater responds:

    @ Callis

    How about you crawl back to the bent spoon and worry about what’s on your site.

    If Loren wants to post about alligator attacks, so be it.

    It certainly isn’t up to you to determine if a subject is cryptid-worthy enough to be featured on Cryptomundo.

  30. Zabo responds:

    dear mr. coleman, thankyou for doing what you do! i dig this site alot and i’m sure to stop bye daily. and i leave comments that’s what i like about crytomundo. you can feel somewhat part of a story that’s close to your liking. i read the story on 9=11 and found nothing wrong with the story.just another skeptic looking for his boogie-man(fame) and loren he won’t find that boogie-man anytime soon!

  31. Loren Coleman responds:

    The weird paradox here is that the more the Bent Spoon people talk about us, the more people that like us come here. Rather ironic, I’d say, since we didn’t start all of this for hits, of course. But then, maybe they did?

  32. Sincero responds:

    In fairness, Cryptomundo has been around for a long time. A few of the older users might remember an article that Loren published on 6th May, 1937 that was in a similar vein…

    ‘Is Sasquatch as fat as the L7 129 Hindenburg?’

  33. SkunkMuffin responds:

    It’s my first post. I arrived late. All the intelligent people said it better than I ever could…so any body notice his initials.

  34. DWA responds:

    Just from my personal standpoint, Bobby seems to be engaging in a cheap, tasteless attempt to try and plug his website…nothing more.

    People do tend to forget that other things were happening – indeed, national headline news – as the sun rose on 9/11. Not only was a man killed in an alligator attack, but several people had been seriously injured by sharks along the East Coast in the preceding week or so. A couple of them died. Chandra Levy had been missing for months; her fate was still being speculated upon. We know now what it was.

    Those people’s families and friends had their own personal 9/11, compared to which the events in New York and Washington were somewhat unavoidably less immediate.

    Methinks those of us who were fortunate enough not to lose anyone near and dear to us on 9/11 should stop treating that day as if its full horror was visited upon us. It wasn’t. If you didn’t lose anyone then, what could be construed as ‘cheap’ is your effort to shame other deaths for elbowing into your pity parade.

  35. Troodon56 responds:

    Okay, I really don’t get it what this Bobbytheskeptic guy is thinking, really! I mean, there is no law stating that Loren is forbidden from writing anything on Cryptomundo, unless it’s about cryptids! Even though this is mainly a cryptozoology website, it’s okay if Loren goes off-topic, sometimes, right? For example, I have my own blog called Troodon City, and I write about all kinds of stuff, on there. These include dinosaurs, cryptids, time zones, current events, and all kinds of topics. In other words, what I mean to say is that there is no requirement that blogs must focus on just 1 specific topic. So, it’s okay if Loren blogs about a man who was killed by an alligator, on 11 September, 2001! There is absolutely nothing wrong, with that!

    Also, Loren Coleman’s main goal in writing that article was to emphasize the fact that there were many people who died on 9/11/01, whose deaths did not get enough attention, due to the fact that the media focused almost exclusively on the terrorist attacks, in New York & Pennsylvania, on that day.

    Now, as for the article about bin Laden and Bigfoot; Well, just because Loren wrote about Osama bin Laden on the same day that he was killed, certainly doesn’t mean, that he was looking to drum up publicity, for Cryptomundo! As Loren has stated many times before, he is not the owner, nor the “boss”, of Cryptomundo. Craig Woolheater is. Therefore, Loren gains no benefits, even if extra hits do, indeed, arrive, to his website.

    Once again, Loren’s motivation for writing that article was to prove a point. This point was that Osama bin Laden and Bigfoot both have a lot in common, because their height has often been exaggerated, by the media, as well as the general public. Also, I think Loren was trying to make fun of bin Laden, by comparing him to Bigfoot. And, considering how bin Laden was an evil terrorist, I think Loren could be excused for insulting him, a little bit, right after his death!

    Besides, even if Cryptomundo’s “hits” were, indeed, higher on those days, that still does not matter, since, as I have said, before, Loren does not get any benefits, at all, from garnering extra “hits”, on this website.

    So, it appears to me that, like so many so-called “skeptics”, Bobbytheskeptic really does not get it, one bit!

Leave your comments

You must be logged in to post a comment.

|Top | Content|

Connect with Cryptomundo

Cryptomundo FaceBook Cryptomundo Twitter Cryptomundo Instagram Cryptomundo Pinterest


Creatureplica Fouke Monster Sybilla Irwin


|Top | FarBar|

Attention: This is the end of the usable page!
The images below are preloaded standbys only.
This is helpful to those with slower Internet connections.