Blogginheads and the Creationists

You may recall that a few days ago, Carl Zimmer posted a discussion of an issue that came up on Bloggingheads TV recently. Apparently, on two separate occasions, bloggingheads ended up entertaining obnoxious discussions by creationists during what otherwise would have been science time. Well, I don’t know if they were actually obnoxious but I do agree with Carl that it is a slipup to allow this sort of thing to happen.

Carl seems to be fairly unhappy about this, and Sean Carrol even less happy, having written off bloggingheads entirely because of this event.

In an apparent response to this, bloggingheads has put up the following discussion between Robert Wright and George Johnson about that event. Since I’m in a place where my Internet connection is very slow (since I’m poaching it off a nearby cabin) I can’t watch it. But you can!

David Dobbs and I have completed our work on a bloggingheads thingie that should be up later today. This whole maneno about the creationists attempts to take over the radio station, as it were, came along when we were already in progress, so David and I decided to stick our heads in the proverbial sand and ignore it until we were done. There is a large difference between not engaging and dis-engaging. Personally, I’m inclined to not care too much if the creationists occasionally take over the radio station, because it just brings them out in the open where we can have our way with them. But, I say that having not listened to (watched) those particular shows, and having not been involved in bloggingheads in the way Zimmer and Carrol have. (In other words, I’m not trying to second guess them).

If our (David and mine) blogginheads thingie works and is posted I’ll let you know as soon as I know.


  1. #1 RBH
    September 6, 2009

    Well, I don’t know if they were actually obnoxious but I do agree with Carl that it is a slipup to allow this sort of thing to happen.

    But it wasn’t a slipup; it was a series of slipups — taking Templeton money, putting on the mutual backslapping “dialogue” between Ron Numbers and YEC Paul Nelson, and the McWhorter/Behe lovefest. It appeared to be a pattern of hehavior.

    Bloggingheads has no intrinsic credibility. It borrows credibility from its participants. In the cases enumerated above it abused that borrowed credibility, among other ways by putting trash on “Science Saturday,” and Carroll and Zimmer (and Phil Plait, too) have elected to not lend Bloggingheads any more of their own hard-earned credibility.

  2. #2 Alan Kellogg
    September 6, 2009

    I believe in God and I think “goddidit” is obnoxious. Creationists belittle the guy they say they support.

  3. #3 Greg Laden
    September 6, 2009

    Well, two/three/four “slipups” over 1.5 to 2 years, for an internet operation, is not necessarily a non-random pattern of behavior.

    I just listened to this (above) “diavlog” and I’m not especially mad at bloggingheads. This is not to say that I agree with everything either of the individuals said, but I am convinced that Wright is not trying to do bad things.

  4. #4 NewEnglandBob
    September 6, 2009

    I listened for 30 minutes and gave up.

    Robert Wright has lost it completely (if he ever had it).

  5. #5 MadScientist
    September 6, 2009

    I agree with RBH; every time I’m goaded into looking at BloggingHeads I see nothing of interest to me and a lot that would annoy me. I never understood why Carrol and Zimmer were there.