30 Questions

In response to all of your questions in our recent survey, we wanted to address some things. 

Q: PLEASE bring Teresa MacBain as a speaker this year!! Please, please, please!
A: We already have our (tentative) lineup for this year, but I can assure you she is being added to our speaker database for future Skepticons.

Q: I think after the event it would be great to get a special link or somewhere where we could capture the talks or get the option to get a DVD with them all.
A: Each speech has been uploaded to Youtube by Hambone Productions, but that is a great idea to help us raise money for skepticon.

Q: Need a streamlined check-in/registration process–long lines and waits last year.
A: We are working out the details about registration and hope to have everything working smoothly this year.

Q: For Friday if they do not have speakers will we be able to get our badges and conference items early? Maybe have a special meeting where people could mingle.
A: On Friday we will be having workshops in the afternoon and will start the presentations after dinner. The local skeptics group is planning Skeptics In The Pub for both Friday and Saturday. If our attendees are more interested in something formal, we’re willing to look in to it!

Q: PLEASE no book sale advertisements masquerading as talks. PLEASE.
A: We try to give our speakers the opportunity to speak on the topic of their choice, but we’ll be sure to let your criticisms be known. We’re very appreciative of our speakers, all of whom donate their time and effort to us without any sort of payment.

Q: I would love to see a speaker session where several people who have left various religions discuss their process of leaving that religion. I know as a person who is still trapped in pretending to be religious (mormon), it inspires me to hear how others survived and were able to reach their own independence from religion.
A: That sounds like an interesting topic that might make for a good panel discussion/Q&A session.

Q: Try,try,try to bring in Dan Dennett.
A: He has been added to our database, and maybe in the future you will see him at Skepticon!

Q: I encourage the speakers to submit their topics in advance and that these topics be communicated with the other speakers to limit redundancy.  I appreciate an equal discussion of science and religion mixed in with history.
A: Last year we had a snafu with a couple presentations where it would have made more sense to put them in a different order, and we are going to try to avoid that this year.

Q: Is there any chance of getting Lawrence Krauss to speak?  I appreciate your efforts.  I am sure it will be another great year at Skepticon!
A: He’s in our database, and we do hope to host him in the future!

Q: I’m really excited about the idea of workshops!
A: So are we!

Q: There needs to be a national circuit for this.
A: Maybe one day!

Q: Diversity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Need more DIVERSITY!
A: We try to invite a wide array of speakers from many different ethnic, experiential, and professional backgrounds. It’s definitely a priority to us!

Q: I would like to see Valerie Tarico and/or Marlene Winell at the next Skepticon, if at all possible.  :)
A: Added to our database – maybe in the future!

Q: Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson . That is all.
A: …Can you repeat that?… I am not sure I quite understood you…

Q: Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson Neil deGrasse Tyson . That is all.
A: Okay, okay! Yes, Tyson would be a great addition to Skepticon… but is Skepticon ready for Neil deGrass Tyson?

Q: If you start things on Friday evening, I’d like to see a debate.
A: We have other plans for Friday. =D

Q: Please contact Amy Roth to set up a community art project.
A: Not a bad Idea – how many people want to see a public sculpture of the FSM? Maybe that’s the next step after our billboard…

Q: Food drive-I think it’s great that it’s a free conference, but if you do a food drive for a local pantry or a diaper drive for planned parenthood for “suggested admission”.  and if everyone brought one thing it would add up so fast and be a cool way to support the community.
A: Not a bad Idea! After we’re set with the event planning, we’ll definitely be interested in setting our sights on that sort of endeavor.

Q: need more cowbell.
A: Babies, when we’re done here, y’all are going to be wearing gold plated diapers!

Q: We needed more time and/or a later lunch to accommodate those restaurants not being available or open to us.  Also I really do think the dinner breaks should be longer–I missed a speaker Saturday evening because we were waiting so long for food at a busy restaurant.
A: No problem, All lunch and dinner breaks have been increased to 1.5 hours.

Q: Increased representation of women, people of color, LGBTQ populations among the speakers/presenters.
A: Definitely a priority for us.

Q: I can’t wait to attend my first Skepticon!
A: WOO!

Q: It would be nice if there were some sort of free or low-cost childcare provided. I know a lot of parents who have wanted to attend for the past couple years, but could not find/afford childcare while they were at the event. Helping out skeptic parents helps them raise better skeptic kids!
A: This year we will have childcare available! We’re still working out the details.

Q: I needed coffee last year!  It would have been great to have it provided at the venue, even for a price.  Maybe have a group donate to run a coffee cart?
A: We’ll see what we can do!

Q: Keep the “skeptics” branding. Don’t make it turn into another exclusively atheist anti-God event.
A: Skepticon has never shied away from applying critical thinking and skepticism to religion, and we don’t plan to start.

Q: there’s a guy on the news a lot lately named Jerry DeWitt, he’s a former pastor and now runs a group called Recovering From Religion He spoke at the AA convention in DC and was soooooooo AWESOME. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get him.
A: Maybe next year!

Q: Where are thinking of having it this year?
A: Downtown Springfield – details are coming soon!

Q: MORE PIRACY
A: Lauren… is that you?

Q: Are you ready for Skepticon 5?
A: Damn right we are! Skepticon 5: bigger, more skeptical, and the most fifth annual Skepticon yet.

4 Comments

  1. Now that you’ve teased us that the lineup is set, when will it be public?

    Reply
  2. Not quite yet, but soon.

    Reply
  3. Because the speakers are not paid, they should plug their books all they want.

    Reply
  4. What hotels will you be using for Skepticon this year? Our group wants to start planning as soon as possible!

    Reply

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