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Not happy with Giulio Fanti’s Paper in JIST

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A reader writes:

This is an Op-Ed. I’m surprised JIST published it.

Another reader writes:

Here is paragraph 1 of the conclusion of Fanti’s paper.

The most important hypotheses of the body image formation of the TS are presented and critically commented on, in view of its peculiar characteristics, some of which are well-known and others of which have only recently been detected.

Great, wonderful, well done. Now here is paragraph 2:

The results have been summarized in two tables, leading to the inference that a source of radiation is the best hypothesis and that, of the various hypotheses based on radiation, CD is the best, although no complete results can be obtained because of the difficult and in some cases dangerous environmental conditions required for experiments. . . .

Baloney, baloney, baloney. This is based on a simple scoring table of 24 characteristics for 12 methods that looks like a street gambler’s punchboard. It assumes that each of the characteristics has about the same weight. C11 reads, “The pronounced rigor mortis of the body is evident, especially on the back image near the buttocks.” C24 reads, “No image can be found under the bloodstains, because they formed before the body image.” Should these two characteristics have the same weight? And why is there a “because” in C24 which changes the characteristic into an argument. The scoring is essentially binary, using x, o and ? for inconsistent, verified and dubious. All of it seems totally subjective, e. g. like how evident is rigor in the butt. I would trust Zugibe or a forensic pathologist, not Fanti on this.

So what does Fanti end up telling us?

Table II shows that, in general, the hypotheses based on radiation are the best (with only seven “X”), followed, respectively, by “gas diffusion” (with eight “X” and one “?”), “contact” (with ten “X” and two “?”), and “artist” (with 12 “X” and five “?”).

Seven versus eight? It gets better.

BTW: Of the 12 methods discussed in this paper, only Garlaschelli and Allen achieved life-sized images. Even so, everyone except Joe Nickell somehow got “o” for buttocks rigor. Explain that. Didn’t Nickell only draw a face?

It is more like judging a ballroom dancing contest than a peer-reviewed scientific paper.

And the winner, dancer and judge alike, is Giulio Fanti doing a two-step corona discharge tango while holding up a card with Nine o’s and only 1 x.

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