n. A contrived or non-existent controversy, manufactured by political ideologues or interest groups who use deception and specious arguments to make their case.
During a question and answer session after a talk I recently gave, I was asked for my opinion about the vaccine/autism controversy. That was easy: my opinion is that there is no controversy. The evidence is in. The scientific community has reached a clear consensus that vaccines don’t cause autism. There is no controversy. There is, however, a manufactroversy — a manufactured controversy — created by junk science, dishonest researchers, professional misconduct, outright fraud, lies, misrepresentations, irresponsible reporting, unfortunate media publicity, poor judgment, celebrities who think they are wiser than the whole of medical science, and a few maverick doctors who ought to know better.
—Harriet Hall, “Vaccines & Autism: A Deadly Manufactroversy,” Skeptic, June 03, 2009
There are live and exciting questions within the theory of evolution. But there is no genuine scientific dispute over evolution itself. That is simply wrong. For the real facts on this "manufactroversy," see the National Center for Science Education's response at
—Sue Strandberg, Keep religion and science at arm's length, The Sheboygan Press, May 07, 2008
2008 (earliest)
Manufactroversy…A manufactured controversy that is motivated by profit or extreme ideology to intentionally create public confusion about an issue that is not in dispute.
—Leah Ceccarelli, “Manufactroversy: The Art of Creating Controversy Where None Existed,” Science Progress, April 11, 2008
Blends are the engines that drive much of neology, but not all blends are created equal: some are resoundingly good, but many (perhaps even most) are head-shakingly bad. An example of the latter is foodtion a barely-pronounceable blend of food and fiction that appeared in one of the example citations for the foodoir post. (Foodoirfood + memoir — itself is a bit better because at least it trips off the tongue nicely.) An example of a very good blend is fauxhemian (faux + bohemian), which combines euphony and wit in one, neat lexical package. The blend manufactroversy (manufactured + controversy) falls in between these two extremes. The two words are knitted together on a common letter (the "t" in manufactured and the "t" in controversy), which is good, but the result is awfully difficult to pronounce, at least until you get used to it. So, yes, it's an ugly word, not to put too fine a point on it, but it's getting a lot of use out there, so it's a welcome addition to the Word Spy database.
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