The Gentle Tasaday: An anthropological hoax

In 1971, a group of people known as the Tasaday were discovered on a remote island of the Phillipines known as Mindanao. They wore leafy loincloths and subsisted off what the forest could provide, possessing no knowledge of tobacco, corn, rice, or domesticated animals. They spoke a new dialect of Malay-Philipino language that included no word for outsiders, war, weapon, or enemy, giving them the title ‘The Gentle Tasaday’. The family unit was nuclear and the community has no formal organization or government outside of some loose food-sharing networks.

Today, Tasaday life is way different and matches more modern tribal life in the Phillipines, as documented on their website. The question is, however, whether this modernization was normal development post-contact or whether there was a hoax involved.

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Sea Shepherd and Whale Wars

We have been and continue to be critical of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Although their goals are admirable their methods are not only ineffective, but in some cases impair the achievement of those goals.  With the premier of Whale Wars season 3 tomorrow evening, we’d like to take a moment to highlight the issues we’ve raised concerning the SSCS. Over the last two years we’ve written a number of post summarizing our problems with Sea Shepherd:

Our friends at Deep Sea News and Underwater Thrills have been critical of SSCS, too:

The above links cover many of the issues we have with this organization. The New York Times recently published an excellent breakdown of the Japanese Whaling Industry. Below are our main criticisms of SSCS:

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