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Lately, we’ve received a lot of traffic to Skepchick thanks to Maria’s not-so-flattering review of a certain idiotic teen movie. Now Elles has posted a review of the book by the same name here, so I expect to see even more. The funny thing is that I have to approve the first post anyone makes on this blog, and this recent influx has seen a lot of sad, nearly illegible rants that, if approved, would turn Skepchick into YouTube, or Myspace or something. I’m getting to the point where I’m more likely to delete a first comment on that thread than let one in, and it makes me feel a little sorry for the person who may wonder why they never see their post appear. I’ve taken to responding to as many as possible, and because there are so many I’ve taken to copying and pasting form letters.

Those of you who are new to Skepchick and are considering commenting, please consider this fair warning that your carefully crafted rant using your peculiar mix of English and lolspeak and text message and spittle may not ever be seen by anyone but me, if it isn’t at least a little polite.

I won’t post the actual comments, but you should be able to figure out what they were like by my responses. Enjoy.


Hi there! Sorry, but we’ve deleted your comment because it didn’t meet our lowest standards for basic literacy, spelling, or decency. If you’d like to make your point with more wit or intelligence, please feel free to try again!

All the best,




We regret to inform you that your comment was not published due to lack of intelligence. We recommend you try again using English.

All the best,




Sorry, but your comment (see below) will not reach the public due to: rudeness/uselessness. If you’d like to try again to meet the minimum standards to post on Skepchick, please do so at your leisure.





Thank you for your recent post on Skepchick (below). Unfortunately, it does not appear to be written in English. Skepchick is an English blog, and therefore all comments must also be in that language.

Thank you,




The post quoted below was rejected and therefore deleted before being seen by anyone in the general public. The reason is that you sound like an illiterate child who is unable to compose a sentence and master capital letters. Here’s hoping you learn to type before graduating high school.

Good luck in life,



That last one was particularly bad.

I should note, finally, that one person actually did try again and was approved – so, perhaps they can be trained to be functioning members of society.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor. Twitter @rebeccawatson Mastodon Instagram @actuallyrebeccawatson TikTok @actuallyrebeccawatson YouTube @rebeccawatson BlueSky

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  1. The thing that really makes me laugh is the way people are so literal and my favorite is “it’s just a book/movie, guys, lighten up”. The absolute backasswardsness that is that statement just blows me away every time and I see it on every internet thread I’ve ever read where there were controversial opinions about anything.

  2. I’m mostly posting to see if my new avatar will work, but I must also say that Rebecca, you truly have a wonderful way with words. And I have not seen or read Twilight…thankfully.

  3. Wait,


    Since you’ve never removed one of my, many, lame posts; I have to assume…You think I can speak English?

    There are people who communicate WORSE than I do?

    People who have a WORSE command of the English language than an old, drain bamaged hood rat?

    Please tell me you are joking,


    BTW: If you’re really serious, you should post them in a “humor” section so we can read and laugh.

  4. Yeah, the sad thing is that the ones that made it through illustrate how warped my scale has become. I read those, like “LOL wtf you can’t critisize the movie if you haven’t seen the book cuz its great and HE LOVES HER” and I think, yes, that is acceptable.

  5. Thank you for your recent post on Skepchick (below). Unfortunately, it does not appear to be written in English. Skepchick is an English blog, and therefore all comments must also be in that language.

    Ah, merde. Pourquoi impose-tu une règle salopique comme ça?

  6. @Rebecca: It’s impossibly high standards like those that are keeping out all the vitally important research into the positive benifits of homeopathy and Psychic Healing out of the Lancet and BMJ

  7. I briefly worked for a small publishing company, and I had to read book submissions that came in. Most made no effort to check our guidelines. One especially obnoxious submission, by someone using the pretentious handle of “The Untamed Prophet,” deserved the following response:

    Dear Untamed Prophet,
    Thank you for your submission. Your work was carefully considered, and it stood out among the rest. Unlike most proposals we have received this year, I find your submission wholly and entirely without merit.

    Thank you


    I tried reading that whole comment thread, but I couldn’t make it. I feel slightly guilty now being part of my family’s gift to my cousin of books 2 and 3. (She really, really wanted them…)

  9. I’m glad I become officially Skepchick-approved before these new stringent standards went into effect.

    I am a Hedge

  10. @girl du jour:

    Doug Stanhope will be sad.

    In other news, Bristol Palin’s boobs can’t even compete with the boobs of Skepchicks. Seriously, I think 5 or 6 of us either have, in the past, or are currently considering getting reductions.

  11. And Rebecca, I think the Catholic Church should consider everything you’ve done here when they look back on your life to see if you performed any miracles. The fact that you have yet to commit a felony over this thread is truly divine.

  12. Rebecca’s a saint. (I’d have guessed tart)

    Skepchick’s need boob reductions.

    Obsequious sycophantic abstaining fictional teen girls with closet Mormon notions and vampire beaus matter not.

    Just trying to get the facts straight.

  13. Thank you, Rebecca, for putting in the time to do that. Somewhere between the breathtaking inanity of certain news sites’ comments, and the sometimes overwhelming intellectualism of’s comments, there’s Skepchick.

    (Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Dawkins’ site, but when I first wake up I may not be ready to read extensive comparisons of More’s “Utopia” vs. Plato’s “Republic,” or whatever. A good, smart article bashing Kevin Trudeau is more what I need.)

  14. Having had that initial comment approved all those many years ago I can now snark and scoff at Twilight with impunity. Groovy!

    Oh wait should I be snarking at the review? I’ll go and see.

  15. I have not seen Twilight, but I blogged a review of it not too long ago and also received a vicious response or two. It is strange to me how rabid everyone is about this film/book. Especially to a guy that was not being serious. Regardless, I have an odd interest in form letters and found this post to be a delight. Well Done.

  16. @Elyse:

    In other news, Bristol Palin’s boobs can’t even compete with the boobs of Skepchicks. Seriously, I think 5 or 6 of us either have, in the past, or are currently considering getting reductions.

    I’ve been meaning to talk to Sam about that.

  17. If we start having standards, then we’ll get accused of being elitists! (OH NOEZ!) What’s next…expecting that commenters provide evidence for their assertions?

    BTW, I’ve found that referring to the “Twilight” books as “The Vampires of Madison County” (or asking why Fabio isn’t on the cover) is a quick and handy way to convey my snark…

  18. I question Rebecca’s sanity for allowing that whole thing to continue as long as it has…It’s really tedious in a rabid sort-of way.

    Neither side is going to surrender or agree, so maybe it should be shot in the back of the head and buried in some bog… ;-)

    Just sayin’

  19. @QuestionAuthority: As hard as I try I just can’t let go the defenses I hear which are just scary. “It’s ok for him to do [horrible/disturbing thing] if he cares about her.” If I got through to even one impressionable teen posting on that thread, it was worth it.

  20. @Kimbo Jones:

    Word. Or at least planting a seed so that in a couple of years a light will go on. With luck, before they’re in a relationship that reminds them EXACTLY of Bella and Edward.

  21. Look I don’t really care about twilight anymore let’s keep talking about boobs. WHO’S WITH ME??!??

  22. @Blake Stacey: “Euh, je voulais dire, « salopique règle».

    Actually, you had it right on your first try.

    I mean:
    En fait, c’était juste le premier fois.

  23. Oh dear.

    I got here because I was googeling on Twilight and so, I was slightly more positive about the books/movie (movie sucked btw) than most people here. I’ll just act if I’m not part of the teenage girl fanclub.
    I really liked the blog , just as I really liked Elles’ one. (Accept for the fact that the ‘yes, send me an email if anyone’s responding to this blog’-alert was on, and my mailbox is practically exploding every day now because of some overenthusiastic fans…).

    Mais, j’adore ce site d’Internet et je promise que je serais une visiteuse loyale.
    (Or something, hey, it’s been a year since my last French class)

    Anyway, I try to write English in an understandable way, without making too much spelling mistakes (English not being my first language). And it’s so much harder to be ironic!

  24. I really liked Elles’ one.

    Thank you.

    Other matters…

    Okay, that Twilight comment thread has been going for 440 comments and my misanthropy is increasing exponentially with each one. You’re telling me that you’ve been receiving comments worse than those?

    Do these people think that it’s cool to type lyk dis all day? Are they unaware that it makes them look like idiots? When will it end?

  25. @teambanzai: as long as we aren’t talking about my mother’s, sister’s, daughter’s, or grandmother’s I’m cool with it. They are after all the third most cool part of women and the first most noticable part. The face is what the 5th or 6th most noticable and shoes are, what 112th most noticalbe?

  26. @Dieke:
    Ugh! I just realised it’s been close to 15 years since my last class. I swear I didn’t notice I was getting that old … :/

  27. Rebecca: I commented once on the Teen Skepchick post and have gotten quite a few responses emailed to me (I checked the box). If you reject the comment, does it still get emailed to us?

  28. @Dread Polack: Hmm, good question. I’m fairly certain that it does not get emailed to subscribers, since the comments that are in moderation aren’t yet published anywhere until I hit “okay.” When deleted, they simply vanish.

  29. I noticed the same thing though. I refreshed the page and nothing new appeared. Then checked to see if they were perhaps old messages, and decided to refresh again when not all of them appeared to be devoid of meaning, and lo and behold, there they were (including the less informative ones) …

    Does {teen}skepchick only require moderation for the first post, or all of them?

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