Posted by: Loren Coleman on April 28th, 2007
“Scoftic” has to be the most ridiculous word in the current lexicon of Bigfoot research.Nightwing, November 2006
“Scoftic” – a Roger Knights neologism.Matt Crowley, September 2005
Sometime before the fall of 2003, Roger Knights, a frequent comment maker on all matters Bigfoot, decided to coin a word that he felt would be a counter to words like “pseudoscience.” According to his own accounting, Knights first used “scoftic” on the Bigfoot Forums on September 13, 2003. No, it was not a Friday, but the date in the old Roman festival calendar is epulum Iovis (“banquet of Jupiter”), on the Ides, during the Ludi Romani. Perhaps Knights should have been beware of the Ides of September, for his term itself has been debated almost as much as what he wished to point out by inventing it.
According to various documents online (e.g. Henry May’s page) and in articles, such as in Fate, September 2005, Knights has developed an exacting meaning for what the term means to him.
My thumbnail definition of “scofticism” is “UNhealthy skepticism.” This is a play on the common phrase, “a healthy (dose of) skepticism.”Roger Knights
Knights has been clear that a “scoftic” is not the investigator who goes out into the field, examines the Bigfoot evidence and finds it was made by, for example, a bear or Ray Wallace. No, Knights appears to be specifically talking about the programmed skeptic who is defined more by a pre-determined mindset than the results of any thoughtful probing of the evidence.
By “scoftic” [I mean] someone who…gives witness testimony no weight whatsoever, on ideological grounds, and who asserts numerous other bits of unreasonable dogma, such as that the quantity of reports is insignificant. Scofticism is thus fanaticism behind a pose of reasonableness. The reasonable pose is “show me the evidence.” The “fine print” is all the qualifiers, and all the hidden assumptions and misdirections.
A nutshell definition of scofticism would be “scientism in disguise,” although that’s not quite accurate….Another thumbnail definition is “a cranky skeptic.”Roger Knights
People seem to wish to talk about this on other threads here at Cryptomundo frequently, roaming off-topic in Bigfoot discussions, instead, to argue about the differences between “skeptic” and “scoftic.” And more. Therefore, here’s a home for an open debate about the existence, as well as the defining uses of “scoftic.”
Do you think the term differs enough from “skeptic” to be useful? Do you think the term has demonstrated evolved development of the discussion? Is it demeaning? Dismissive? Definitely useful? Worthy of deployment throughout hominology and cryptozoology? Defensively debatable? Definitive?
(Thank you all for a successful first week of the 2007 release of MA. The initial and hopefully continued good rankings will make it easier for anyone writing these kinds of books – whether you are a scoftic, skeptic, true believer, academic, field worker, chronicler, or open-minded investigator. Appreciation, everyone.)