The Sagan Standard - Deepstash

Bite-sized knowledge

to upgrade

your career

Ideas from books, articles & podcasts.

The Sagan Standard

The Sagan Standard

The Sagan standard is related to astronomer Carl Sagan, who stated that “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” (a dictum abbreviated as ECREE).

This means that the more unlikely a certain claim is, given existing evidence on the matter, the greater the standard of proof that is expected of it.

STASHED IN:

81

MORE IDEAS FROM THE SAME ARTICLE

  • Instead of viewing claims as either ordinary or extraordinary, it’s better to view them as ranging between these two ends of the spectrum, based on how likely they are given everything that is known on the subject.
  • It can be difficult to define the exact th...

Overall, the concept of ECREE does not mean that claims that contradict the current scientific consensus should always be ignored, or that claims that support the consensus should be automatically accepted. Rather, ECREE simply suggests that the likelihood that a certain claim is true, b...

Based on the Sagan standard, if someone claims that they came across a unicorn during they commute, they would be expected to brig stronger evidence in order to verify that claim than if they claimed that they came across a horse.

There is no clear separation between what is ‘ordinary’ evidence and what is ‘extraordinary’ evidence; the answer is in most cases subjective, though it should nevertheless be based on sound reasoning.

The more unlikely a claim is, the more supporting substantial the evidence that you should require before accepting it as true.

1 Reaction

Comment

It's time to

READ

LIKE

A PRO!

Jump-start your

reading habits

, gather your

knowledge

,

remember what you read

and stay ahead of the crowd!

Takes just 5 minutes a day.


TRY THE DEEPSTASH APP

+2M Installs

4.7 App Score