4 Ways To Differentiate Real Science From Pseudoscience
June 29, 2022
Pseudoscience is everywhere, and you will have run into it, whether you've noticed it or not. It is a fake type of science that is made to look like the real deal. Pseudoscience claims are typically based on shaky foundations without any objective evidence to back them up. Here are some ways to distinguish real science from pseudoscience.
Check The Source
It's important to check the source of the scientific claims. Does the person or entity making the claim have any valid expertise about the topic? Are they part of a larger marketing campaign that claims to be an authority in science or academia? These questions are often the fastest way to detect whether something is real or pseudoscience.
Type Of Language
Obvious clues to look out for when differentiating pseudoscience from the real thing are things like excessive exclamation points or overly emotive language. If you're unsure about some of the terminology being used, Google it. Remember, peddlers of pseudoscience are trying to make their claim sound valid and intellectual, so they will probably be saying too much.
Beware of Exclusivity
True science is often a collaborative effort, and new findings typically come from existing knowledge already available to the public. So it's highly unlikely that a brand new treatment or therapy would spring out of nowhere without an existing scientific background to explain how it works. Keep an eye out for terms such as 'secret formula,' which attempts to make you feel like you're part of something special when, in fact, it more likely means the product is yet to be exposed to scientific criticism.
Does It Mention A Conspiracy?
A favorite tactic of pseudoscience peddlers is to add some form of conspiracy into their sales pitch. Claims like 'the government have been withholding this information for decades,' or 'doctors don't want you to know about this,' are made to make you feel like you've beaten the system and can get something that "they" have been keeping from you. This kind of rhetoric would never be used within real science and should be considered a major red flag.