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A letter, signed by 124 scholars and posted online last week, has caused an uproar in the consciousness-research community. It argues that a prominent theory describing what makes someone or something conscious — called the integrated information theory (IIT) — should be labelled as pseudoscience. Since its publication on 15 September in the preprint repository PsyArXiv1, the letter has resulted in some researchers arguing over the label and others worrying that it will increase polarization in a field that has grappled with issues of credibility in the past.