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Posted by on Oct 1, 2012 in Uncategorized | 20 comments

Why Skeptic Blogs is now Skeptic Ink

Hello and welcome all to our wonderful new home! The network formerly known as “Skeptic Blogs” is now Skeptic Ink aka the Skeptic Ink Network (SIN). We simultaneously upgraded to far superior software (in my opinion) and art. We hope you like it.

Everything else, our core values, mission, and people are the same (except that we’re adding several excellent new people this week). You might wonder, why the change after just a month-ish of existence? The catalyst was criticism from members of the skeptic and secular community that our previous name, which was designed to be as descriptive and clear as possible, could lead to confusion because there are other websites with similar or similar-sounding names and goals.

At the outset, we were not interested in changing the network’s name, and felt that there was no good cause to do so. However, we also felt it would have been hypocritical for a network which prizes critical thinking and reasoned discourse to reject criticism out of hand merely because we don’t like the sound of it. Overreacting to criticism and becoming defensive and combative is the sort behavior commonly seen around the atheosphere that we wish to reduce. Therefore, John and I and all of the authors who write here had some highly engaged discussions about the merits of the case for renaming. At length, and after much consideration, we decided a change would be beneficial to all parties in the long term. We understand it’s a bit inconvenient but hope that you agree it is best in the long run. By the way, I want to mention that it was Rebecca Bradley of The Lateral Truth who came up with “Skeptic Ink”; this is just one more reason we’re very fortunate to have her.

After it was resolved to rebrand, we decided it would make sense to accelerate existing plans to upgrade the software and platform. When we first produced the network, John and I had very few resources to work with. In the month following launch, we received generous support from you, the fans, and great deals from Ryan Grant Long and the most excellent folks at Radful. All of the writers here and John and I are touched by the wonderful reception our website got at launch, and by the kind words of support and encouragement from so many of you. That’s one reason we’re working very hard to make this network the best damn Skeptic salon around.

We’re not slowing down any from here; we’ve got some great things on the horizon. Come on in, talk your shoes off and conversate with us. No SINners shall be turned away.

Cheers,

Ed

PS. Please note that the official Facebook and twitter pages haven changed (neither permits changes to account links). Please make a note of it. Also, while we are loving this new site, it has a few rough patches and we will be smoothing things over in the coming days and weeks. Please let us know if anything is outright not working, though.

 

  • Exrelayman

    The lack of an “about” for each blogger is rather unfortunate. Hopefully this is merely a growing pain.

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  • Clarissa

    If John Loftus is involved, the whole thing is compromised from the start.

    Remember how he had all those contributors to his blog?

    Why do you think they bailed?

    To Loftus, its all about him, ultimately. Get ready to get burned.

    • Edward Clint

      Please refrain from needless invective. The writers on this network have wide latitude to run their sites as they please without interference from John or myself (limited only by the mission statement and discussion policy).

      We have a delightful clade of writers here, and they are only reasonably judged by the merit of their individual work.

    • Shadow of the Hedgehog

      When you speak of writers bailing, I think you’ve confused this site with FTB. They’ve lost most of their good bloggers, and JT Eberhard.

  • Jim in AZ

    I really like the format of the new site. I’m sure it’s going to be a great success.

    • Edward Clint

      Thanks, Jim!

  • Randy

    Fortunately, it’s relatively easy to update my RSS Feeds for your new site. I like the new name.

  • http://wikipress.org/wp/User_talk:Wa%C5%BCne_przygotowania_na_roli Brandie

    Keep up the fantastic piece of work, I read few content on this internet site and I believe that your web blog is very interesting and has circles of wonderful information.

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  • Shadow of the Hedgehog

    I like the new look, and wish you much success here, but could you make it easier to find? I didn’t know where you guys had gone until I checked Bluharmony’s twitter.

    • Edward Clint

      Easier how? The old URLs now permanently redirect here.

      • Shadow of the Hedgehog

        Unless I did something wrong, it did not work for me. I kept being directed to skepticblogs.com.

  • http://Athmorality.blogspot.com Katie G

    I usually read blogs in Flipboard on my phone, so I hadn’t had a chance to look around. I must say, the mobile interface looks very nice. I approve!

    • Edward Clint

      Glad you like it, Katie. That was definitely a priority for us. Our design is fluid, and dynamically resizes to almost any resolution.

      • Mark Erickson

        Unfortunately, there’s always a trade off. I’m on an iPad and can’t reverse pinch to zoom in or double tap to make the current column () resize to the screen width.

        • Mark Erickson

          Main column, not current. And the () was supposed to contain {div}.

  • jmtz

    The new digs look great.I’ll be poking around here quite a bit…

    @ Shadow….

    “Unless I did something wrong, it did not work for me. I kept being directed to skepticblogs.com.”

    Ditto… I only found my way here through a comment of Justin V’s at another site.

    • http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

      Spread the word, chaps and chapesses.

  • Bob of QF

    I also was quite confused at the (to me) sudden change overnight, and until today, when the site that my “http://www.skepticblogs.com/” bookmark pointed to ran a page on what had happened, I was in the dark.

    Glad to get it sorted, though– the new site looks good.

  • http://www.builtbybarker.com Darrell Barker

    I’m interested in the how/who of your attractive logo. Is there a story behind it?

    • Edward Clint

      Hello Darrell and thank you. Skeptic Ink’s art concept was developed by myself and Ryan Grant Long. Ryan wrote about it at his site here. Excerpt:

      The figure represents Hypatia, a Greek philosopher and the first historically noted woman in mathematics. Hypatia taught mathematics, astronomy and philosophy in Alexandria during a time of social and political unrest, and was murdered by a Christian mob after tensions between various religious groups and political leaders boiled over. In a modern context she has come to represent the conflicts between science/reason, and religious fanaticism. A movie starring Rachel Weisz called Agora dramatizes the events leading up to her murder (although it contains a fair bit of artistic license, it is still a good watch and available for streaming on Netflix). The lighthouse in the logo is, of course, the Lighthouse at Alexandria, one of the great wonders of the world and an obvious symbol for guidance and enlightenment.

      Hypatia (and the related lighthouse) symbolizes the key values of Skeptic Ink. The devotion to science & reason, the lingering discord between religion and science, and the sadness of needless strife that religion & quasi-religious dogmatism foment, which lead to her untimely death.

      Over the years, there have also been many distortions and half-truths told about Hypatia by pro and anti-Christians alike, to support their own viewpoints. This makes Hypatia not merely a symbol of skepticism, but a lesson in it- a reminder of the need for it.

      Lastly, historic female intellectuals and leaders have often been given short-shrift, even by progressive intellectuals and secular/skeptical activists. We believe it’s well to remind and educate about history’s great female thinkers and Hypatia is one of our favourites.

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