Jan 6, 2009

How Windschuttle swallowed a hoax to publish a fake story in Quadrant

Keith Windschuttle, the editor of the conservative magazine Quadrant, has been taken in by a hoax intended to show that he will print outrageous propositions, providing they flatter his ideological preconceptions, reports Margaret Simons.

Keith Windschuttle, the editor of the conservative magazine Quadrant, has been taken in by a hoax intended to show that he will print outrageous propositions.


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23 thoughts on “How Windschuttle swallowed a hoax to publish a fake story in Quadrant

  1. Allen Glover

    As left as I am, I cant help but think of all those poor people living in glass houses.

  2. Michael H Goldhaber

    Mr. Windschuttle, of whom I have never previously heard, is wrong in suggesting that Sokal’s footnotes were all bogus. In fact they were literally true. Sokal just felt that what he quoted was senseless, which was debatable.

  3. Christine Hyde

    Quadrant readers are natural sceptics and spoofs are simply time wasted in concoction when there is so much of interest to be explored. As for the Ern Malley hoax, that was perpetuated by two people who did not have the insight to see that even if they wrote gibberish, they were unable to write badly. Shame on them!

    Please! There is no wit in this Sharon Gould effort!

  4. Jack

    I don’t know much about Quadrant, but I do know this isn’t Ern Malley and that this isn’t a clever “hoax”.
    This is odd, and says more about the author than anyone.
    It is easy to deceive if this is your goal – just ask the Enron auditors !
    I am embarrassed that this is what a Crikey subscription currently offers me – where is Stephen Mayne ?
    It brings to mind Brian’s mother’s line: “He isn’t the messiah, he is just a naughty little boy !”

  5. Mmm

    I already have a name in mind. It looks like a royally executed prank. Whether it really has deeper political consequences I’m really not sure. One for the literati perhaps. By all means enjoy. Something to console oneself as Howard gets his medal of freedom.

    Notice how the Toad, to quote a veteran wonk, wraps himself in the flag even at this dreadful time. A bit like Henderson airbrushing perhaps a million deaths and saying history still has to judge. Like yeah we did in the street in Sydney 2003 with 250,000 -500,000 rally unprecedented in my time saying No War in Iraq.

    As if the Australian people agreed with him and he still says it’s a medal in our name. What a nerve the guy has. Is Windshuttle the Toad’s toadlet as it were still on the ABC Board?

  6. Jenny L

    Solipsistic to the core Windschuttle will comfort himself with denial and plod on as before. Nothing will shift him or his factions from their blinkered view of being tailors of truth. Which is a shame because if Keith Windschuttle is so genuinely committed to transparency he should be thankful for his exposure as a human being warts and all. What a shame Windshuttle’s reality check has come this late in his career.

  7. Miss Viv

    Although this article seemingly exposed a hoax article, I am sure most of you wouldnt be surprised by the fact that the basis of the article “the insertion of human genes in to food crops, insects and livestock” is a topic that is very real and based on fact. Scientists have be actively polluting of our food sources with “modified genes” for quite awhile now. Even mutating species is not above the “ethics” of scientists in this day an age.
    So what exactly about the bogus article doesnt ring true? The fake references?
    I can guarantee that somewhere out there, there is a few scientists mixing up a genetic cocktail waiting for the opportunity to be legally able to add these human “modified” genes to our prepackaged food and food sources.
    Twenty years ago most of us would never have thought that a strain of wheat would have the capabilities of being able to produce a “natural” toxin that would kill all insects on touch. We also would not have thought that it was possible to create a breed of fish that glowed in the dark, thanks to a little gene splicing with jelly fish DNA.
    What makes anyone think that we dont already have human DNA implanted into our food sources already?
    Science has been know to make more than a few mistakes on an environmental stage, cane toads for one.
    Although this was a hoax article I believe there is information within the article that sets my alarms off.
    I dont care if it was fake to payout Windschuttle, I do believe that there are many people out there wanting to further modify out food sources and it scares me.
    If human DNA is spliced into our food “soylent green is people” will no longer be a classic film quote but our reality.

  8. J Laws

    What on earth are you challenging JohnG? Windschuttle has admitted he got stung by a hoaxster as you try to tell us something else. Keith Windschuttle was done over professionally on Keith W’s own admission and you p*ss into the wind about the reporter being part of a leftist plot. If that’s not contrary to your demands for a ‘different media’ (I assume the biased right wing press to which we’re so accustomed) I’m stuffed.

  9. Sam Collyer

    Mr Windschuttle made a mistake, let’s be clear. But the fact that Crikey has hung another right wing figure out to dry is hardly a news flash. The next question here is how Crikey, in the spirit of demonstrating its commitment to fairness, is progressing in its pursuit of those of alternative political/philosophical persuasions. In all my time reading Crikey, I can’t recall similar journalistic doggedness in relation to someone who was demonstrably left-wing. It makes one recall Smaller Fish to Fry, that wonderfully-cutting episode of Frontline where Mike Moore keeps missing the bigger stories. That said, clearly it’s only people with the surnames Akerman, Bolt, Devine and Albrechtsen that make such unprofessional errors warranting such a detailed investigation. Thank you for keeping us all informed.

  10. Stephen Rowley

    I don’t get it. I’m no fan of Windschuttle by a long stretch – on the contrary – but the article “Sharon Gould” submitted is a completely pointless hoax. There isn’t anything in it that makes Windschuttle foolish for publishing it: having read through it, it’s a perfectly lucid, well-written piece. It’s not even virulently right wing. Perhaps some footnotes don’t check out, but even there, most are correct. So what’s the point being made against Windschuttle: that he doesn’t check every footnote? Wow. Perhaps a peer-reviewed academic journal should feel foolish for publishing this, and not picking up the fact that the CSIRO research didn’t exist, but it seems petty in the extreme to suggest Quadrant should have checked every reference. Slipping a few errors and bodgy footnotes into an otherwise completely coherent article is not what the Sokal hoax was all about.

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