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Paranormal Pseudoscience Skepticism/critical thinking

Robert Lancaster needs your help to keep up the good fight against Sylvia Browne

I got this e-mail the other day, and I urge everyone who’s ever linked to Robert Lancaster’s excellent site to do as Tim Farley requests. (While you’re at it, you should consider linking to Farley’s equally useful What’s the Harm?):

I’m writing you because your site is one of the top ranked sites (according to Google) which hyperlinks to the site Stop Sylvia Browne. As you know, Robert Lancaster has done a fantastic service to the community by creating and maintaining this site over the last two years.  Robert is currently in the hospital recovering from a stroke that he had in August.

Unfortunately, the renewal for the domain name “stopsylviabrowne.com” came due during the first weeks after Robert’s stroke, and it expired.  A domain squatter noticed this fact, and snatched up the domain before anyone noticed.  So now that domain contains non-skeptical content that we should not be endorsing via hyperlink.

We need everyone who is currently linking to the old domain to change their links to a different domain which is STOPSYLVIA.COM. This new name is up and running now.

NOTE!  If you have already changed your link to point to a .NET or .US domain, we need you to change it to STOPSYLVIA.COM.  It is important for Google ranking that we all link to the same URL for the site.

It is also vitally important that we remove as many links to the old domain, and change these links to point to the new domain.  If your blog or content management software allows it, please revise any and all old posts you can. (Most blogs will let you revise old posts).  This will simultaneously boost Robert’s site visibility and penalize the current owner of the old domain.

If you need more details on precisely what you should be doing, feel free to read my explanation here:

http://skeptools.wordpress.com/2008/11/01/skeptics-load-your-google-bombs/

I explain exactly how and why Google-bombing works and give you some specific tips on how to compose your hyperlinks to have a maximum effect. Note for instance that you SHOULD include “Sylvia Browne” in the hyperlink, but you SHOULD NOT include the word “Stop”.

I thank you for your attention to this, and I’m sure Robert and Susan Lancaster thank you too.

–Tim Farley
 http://whatstheharm.net

P.S. To see precisely which of your pages link to Stop Sylvia Browne, you can use the same Google search which I used:

http://www.google.com/search?q=link%3Astopsylviabrowne.com

Done! And I wish Robert as complete a recovery from his stroke as possible. Strokes can be devastating, and I hope he’s able to return to the running of his most excellent (and needed) skeptical website.

Skeptico has more. as does the JREF Forum.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

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