SkeptiCamp NYC 2009: Share the apple of knowledge

Current Home Page | 2009 Home Page | Photo Gallery | Resources from Presenters | The Schedule | FAQ and Presenter Guide | Took place on December 6th, 2009.
NOTE: The 2009 event is over. This presenter's guide is still available for archival and reference purposes.

So, you want to present at SkeptiCamp NYC?!

This guide will tell you almost everything you need to know that is specific to this New York edition. More valuable information, about SkeptiCamp in general, can be found here:

Some important points to make, up front:
  • The deadline for submitting session ideas is November 27th, 2009.
  • Presenters will be required to pay the same registration fee that all of the non-presenters will have to pay. It is only $15. And, it will help us defray the cost of running the conference.

  • Please read the Questions & Answers section, below, for more details.

Here are the steps necessary to to submit your idea:

  1. Come up with an idea that will appeal to skeptics and science enthusiasts. A good source of presentation ideas can be found here:

  2. Register to attend the conference! Registration information can be found on the Registration Page

    Even if you were not chosen to present, you should still attend the conference. We will welcome you, with open arms, as someone who is probably either very informed or opinionated or both, on some important matters.
  3. Inform us of the idea, by filling out our Submission Form.
    (Alternatively, you could e-mail the organizer directly, at But, we recommend using the form, if you can.)

    Be sure to do so before midnight on November 27th, 2009.

  4. Within a day or two, you should see your idea posted on the Submissions Page, along with everyone else's.

  5. The final schedule will be announced on November 30th, 2009. You will be informed, via e-mail, if you are going to present.

    Some folks may be chosen as "alternates". If one of the originally scheduled presenters is absent, or otherwise unable to conduct his or her presentation duties, an alternate will be selected to take their place.

Important Questions and Answers

If I want to present, do I need to register for the event?
Yes! Since this is a user-generated conference, the presenters are also the attendees. Everyone interested in participating in the event needs to register and pay the $15 registration fee. As a presenter, you must be able to physically attend the conference. Location and time information is on the home page and the schedule of topics will be posted a few days before the event.

Why do I have to pay?
The benefits of having a SkeptiCamp in New York City far outweigh the costs (especially the cost of a venue). Your registration fee will go directly to covering the cost of providing the space and equipment necessary for a full day of learning and discussion.

What is the deadline?
The deadline for submitting session ideas is November 27th, 2009.

Is there an advantage to registering and/or submitting presentation ideas early?
Yes! The advantage is two-fold:

  1. We only have room for 50 participants, including presenters, and we anticipate that the room will fill up quickly. We are aiming to keep this event limited in size to facilitate participation and discussion. (If this is a success, we hope to expand on it in the future, perhaps using multiple rooms.)
  2. Session ideas will be examined in a roughly first-come, first-served basis. The first ten eligible ideas are more likely to make it to the schedule than the last ten.

What should I present?
We are accepting session ideas related to science, skepticism, and critical thinking, in general. The less related to that, the more likely we will not accept it. The more descriptive your description is, the better able we will be to judge it. We encourage you to present something you are passionate about, or perhaps something you are (or would like to be) an expert on, and definitely something that will interest and facilitate discussion with the others in the group. A good source of presentation ideas can be found here:

How long should my presentation be?
When you submit your idea, you can tell us how long you think it will take. The maximum amount of time allowed will be 30 minutes. But, lots of folks have been able to cover good ground in their topics in 15 or 20 minutes, in the past.

Can I submit more than one idea?
If you think you came up with a better idea than something you submitted previously, you can try. That idea will replace your previous one. Under no circumstances will anyone be allowed to actually give more than one presentation.

And, please don't "spam" us with lots of different things. That will just get you rejected, completely.

What if I have special needs for supplies or equipment for my presentation?
We will be providing a projector, screen, laptop, and dry erase board, for visual aids. Beyond that, you are responsible for providing any other equipment you will need. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask Mitch:

Will the sessions at SkeptiCamp NYC be recorded?
Yes! We would like to video tape the whole thing. However, as a presenter, you could opt-out. If you really don't want your presentation to be recorded, please let us know.

Highlights of what we record will probably be posted on video streaming sites, such as YouTube. We might stream some whole sessions, as well. (We do not know if we will put out DVDs, yet.)

Will the sessions at SkeptiCamp NYC be streamed live?
We do not know, yet. There are currently no plans in place to do so. But, that could change. Especially if we sense a lot of demand for it.

If we do end up with a system for streaming the event live, presenters will be able to opt-out of that, if they feel they must.

Will any food be provided?
We will provide provide refreshments: coffee, soda, some snacks, etc. (We aim to have Tim-Tams, too!) We do not provide any meals, but there are a few restaurants nearby to choose from, during the lunch break.

How do you decide who gets to present?
Session ideas are reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. The first ten eligible, non-redundant, entries will be chosen for the schedule. (If two people had a very similar topic, the first one in gets to give it.) A few alternates will also be chosen, in case someone cannot present.

To be eligible, your topic:
  • should appeal to the theme of science and/or skepticism, etc.
  • must not be abusive
  • must be submitted by the deadline
  • and, must be provided by someone already registered to attend the conference

Where did the name "SkeptiCamp" come from?
Check out our Etymology page, to find out.

So, what are you waiting for? Fill out our Submission Form!

Contact us with questions or comments: