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How To Spot Pseudoscience

Alien fossils found in a meteorite?! Sounds amazing, but the science isn’t there. And that’s not the only example of hyped stories turning out to be, well, nothing. Trace gives you tips on how to tell the difference between science, and pseudoscience.

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“Results of X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) analysis, Triple Oxygen Isotope analysis and Scanning Electron Microscopic (SEM) studies are presented for stone fragments recovered from the North Central Province of Sri Lanka following a witnessed fireball event on 29 December 2012.”

“Astrobiologists Find Ancient Fossils in Fireball Fragments”

“Algae-like structures inside a Sri Lankan meteorite are clear evidence of panspermia, the idea that life exists throughout the universe, say astrobiologists.”

“Alien space rocks EXPLODE in fireball over Japan”

“Japanese star-gazers have been all a-buzz this week after a fireball lit up the night sky before crashing to earth in Saitama prefecture, a little north-west of Tokyo.”

“10 Questions To Distinguish Real From Fake Science”

“Pseudoscience is the shaky foundation of practices–often medically related–that lack a basis in evidence. ”

“Extraterresterial Life Exists, Scientist Chandra Wickramasinghe Claims”

“If a group of scientists are correct, tiny fossils uncovered inside a meteorite found in Sri Lanka in December are proof of extraterrestrial life.”

“Meteorite Holds Proof of Extraterrestrial Life — Or Not”

“A British professor of astrobiology has asserted in breathless tones that a meteorite found in Sri Lanka contains microscopic biological fossils — indisputable proof, he claims, that life exists beyond Earth.”

“No, Diatoms Have Not Been Found in a Meteorite”

“If there’s a story practically guaranteed to go viral, it’s about evidence of life in space. And if you have pictures, why, that’s going to spread like, well, like a virus.”

DNews is a show about the science of everyday life. We post two new videos every day of the week.

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