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Re: Liaoning Freak Show at Dinofest

In a message dated 12/2/00 9:38:18 AM Pacific Standard Time, 
gbabcock@best.com writes:

<< Other Liaoning fossils were indeed apparently cobbled together from
 unrelated animals, a la the infamous _Archaeoraptor_ and the notorious
 rhamphorhynchoid pterosaur sporting the head of _Confuciusornis_.  Three
 such specimens stood out at Dinofest.  >>

     This is, of course, an absolute nightmare for any dinosaur scientist or 
anyone who really cares about the science of vertebrate paleontology. 
Dinofest and similar events like the recent "Bambiraptor" symposium exist for 
many reasons. One of those reasons is to enable commercial fossil dealers to 
gain cachet by playing footsie with real scientists and to publish along side 
of them (if you're lucky enough to have the papers actually published). Of 
course, everyone wants to see the treasures--I know that I do, but if this is 
the price, if this is what they are willing to place before the public in 
order to sell tickets, I want nothing to do with them. I realize I'm not 
breaking any hearts here (just losing potential customers), but I will not 
exhibit in or even set foot in a Dinofest or any similar venue. 
  Dan Varner