Yahoo News science feed sends horoscopes

Yes, thanks to alert reader Rodger, I discovered that the Yahoo SCIENCE FEED sends horoscopes to the readers. Here’s a headline; click on the screenshot to see the “change”. (Hint: it’s not about a change in the brightness at night.)

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 6.22.40 AM

What’s the change in store. I quote from Yahoo:

When darkness descends and you look to the night sky tonight, what you’ll be seeing is a very special full moon. Not only will the moon be in the realm of Aquarius, but it will soon be depicting a lunar eclipse on the night of August 18th.

So, what exactly does this mean for us sisters of the moon?

Well, to put it simply: There are going to be some changes heading our way. As you look forward to many new beginnings and possibly unexpected endings, it’s important that you fall back on what makes you unique. There may be a side to you others don’t often see, but now is the perfect time to use this part of yourself as you work to embrace all the newness in your life.

This particular full moon – which is also called the “Sturgeon Moon” – can also bring about a bit of chaos, especially since it’s in conjunction with the lunar eclipse. With this in mind, we should all see this Aquarius moon as a signal that it’s time to begin a self-care ritual.

While aiming to embrace your unique traits, you should also set aside time to take care of yourself in ways you normally wouldn’t. Sign up for a class that will allow your artistic side to shine, go to bed earlier, treat yourself to a manicure and pedicure, or maybe even schedule some time to volunteer at a local organization. Ultimately, with change on the horizon, it’s important that you batten down the hatches by establishing some inner peace and love.

Screw that! And indeed, judging from the comments, the readers were pretty ticked off.

Now I know there are some petulant readers out there that are gonna ask this, “Hey, Professor Ceiling Cat (Emeritus), how come you’re okay with cupping at the Olympics but not with horoscopes?” If you read that earlier post, you’d see the difference. For one thing, I said at the time that while athletes are welcome to participate in woo if it has a placebo effect, it’s the responsibility of the press to point out that cupping has no known medical benefits beyond a placebo; and they should also point out the dangers of cupping (yes, there are some).

While there are few dangers of horoscopes (except for those credulous souls who believe them and act on them), it is the responsibility of Yahoo Science News to point out that there is no evidence that astrology “works” in the sense of connecting personality with the configuration of stars and planets. In fact, double-blind testing shows that it doesn’t work (if you want the article, ask me).  It’s the responsibility of any site, especially one that says it’s a science site, to note this, and to add (if they must publish astrology, and they should do so on the “entertainment” site) that “this information is for fun only; do not expect it to be accurate.”

Speaking of accuracy, here’s the picture of the “lunar eclipse” at the head of the article. See any problem with this?

4fd3f86342dbd64169ac1f1271e2fa02

22 Comments

  1. Posted August 18, 2016 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Lunar eclipse…solar eclipse; astronomy…astrology; let’s not get all caught up in details.

  2. Posted August 18, 2016 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    I think I’ve seen that pic on the Valspar website for faux finishing.

  3. Posted August 18, 2016 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Astrology, now there is something to live by…
    Doesn’t surprise me yahoo are being…yahoo’s

  4. Randall Schenck
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    Hello, this is a solar eclipse.

  5. Posted August 18, 2016 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    I absolutely love the picture. I’ve never seen an annular eclipse [b] of the Sun [/b] “live” and would really really like to. TO say nothing of a total eclipse. But I have seen a lunar eclipse. People at Yahoo! don’t know their celestial bodies (no pun intended).
    The horoscope sounds probable for every “star sign” again.
    It’s usually a good time to keep to a healthy diet, and, since it’s almost back-to-school time, signing up for a class might be fun.
    What do you think about a Polish 40-something woman making her dream come true and start learning French?
    BTW, who was it who said that the midwife’s gravitational pull on you has more effect on your birth than the Sun? Either Feynman or Douglas Adams?

    • allison
      Posted August 18, 2016 at 10:34 am | Permalink

      >BTW, who was it who said that the midwife’s gravitational pull on you has more effect on your birth than the Sun?

      I’m pretty sure that was Carl Sagan in his book Cosmos

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted August 18, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

        Dawkins did, in the excellent Independent article linked to by Derek (below).

        Of course Sagan may also have said it.

        cr

      • Posted August 21, 2016 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

        Now that you mention Sagan, wasn’t it him in “The Candle in the Darkness”?

      • Posted August 22, 2016 at 1:02 am | Permalink

        Of course, I meant “The Demon-haunted world: Science as a candle in the dark.” I hope PCC-E can excuse my mistake!

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted August 18, 2016 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

      “It’s usually a good time to keep to a healthy diet, and, since it’s almost back-to-school time, signing up for a class might be fun.
      What do you think about a Polish 40-something woman making her dream come true and start learning French?”

      Just do it! Sign up for a beginners class. Also, there are plenty of French-language websites on the Net to practise on, with the aid of online dictionaries or Google Translate*. It’s hard at first but as you go along and pick up more words, it gets easier.

      (*Just allow for the fact that 10% of the time Google Translate gets it totally wrong)

      cr

  6. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    “So, what exactly does this mean for us sisters of the moon?
    Well, to put it simply: There are going to be some changes heading our way.”

    This writing is patronizing. Yet clearly written by an idiot. Hulk mad.

  7. Derek
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    Dawkins had a great takedown of astrology and why it shouldn’t be viewed as harmless.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/the-real-romance-in-the-stars-1527970.html

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted August 18, 2016 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

      Excellent read!

      That was a 1995 article, but I hadn’t seen it before. Vintage Dawkins.

      cr

  8. Robert Bray
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    ‘science broadly misconstrued’

    [no fair! why can’t I be a ‘sister of the moon’ too?]

  9. Posted August 18, 2016 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    clouds

  10. Diana MacPherson
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    I think I should go on a violent rampage à la King Kong or Mothra because 1) it’s not a side people see 2) it’s chaotic. 3) It would be taking care of myself because I’d be getting my anger out instead of letting it fester and causing me to grind my teeth at night.

  11. jimroberts
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    We can see through the bright ring to the cloudy sky behind. I have tried to find any plausible explanation for such an event, but am totally frustrated. Help!

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted August 18, 2016 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      No, the clouds are in front. The bright ring is bright enough to ‘cut through’ the thin cloud cover. The clouds in front of the moon (the dark circle) are visible by light coming through them from behind, like the fringe of clouds surrounding the sun. I’ve often seen that (sans eclipse) on lightly cloudy days.

      My immediate reaction was ‘Photoshop’, but on reflection it could well be genuine.

      cr

  12. Posted August 18, 2016 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    Reblogged this on The Logical Place.

  13. JohnJay
    Posted August 18, 2016 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    This is all moot.
    There was no lunar eclipse August 17-18, 2016.

    http://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/lunar/2016-august-18

  14. Lurker111
    Posted August 19, 2016 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    Just like the guy with the Tau Manifesto (“Pi is all wrong”), the term eclipse is used in contradictory fashions.

    E.g., “solar eclipse” occurs when the sun is eclipsed by the moon.

    Thus, a “lunar eclipse” should really be another “solar eclipse,” but from the perspective of the moon, where the sun is eclipsed by the earth.

    Or, if we’re going to keep “lunar eclipse,” we should then rename “solar eclipse” to “terran eclipse.”

    There has to be a better overall terminology, but I guess this battle is already over.

    (E.g., SME eclipse (Sun-Moon-Earth) and SEM eclipse (Sun-Earth-Moon)

    If you use this in a textbook, just credit me, okay? 😉


One Trackback/Pingback

  1. […] Jerry Coyne reports today that Yahoo!’s science news feed is reporting on astrology. Not that it’s Taurus excrement, but an article with the headline, “Tonight’s full moon and upcoming lunar eclipse are going to bring about some CHANGE” is full of astrological bull crap. […]

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