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Thread: Flat Earth

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    Flat Earth

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flat_E..._Earth_Society

    In 1956, Samuel Shenton set up the International Flat Earth Research Society (IFERS), better known as the Flat Earth Society from Dover, UK, as a direct descendant of the Universal Zetetic Society. This was just before the Soviet Union launched the first artificial satellite, Sputnik; he responded, "Would sailing round the Isle of Wight prove that it were spherical? It is just the same for those satellites."

    His primary aim was to reach children before they were convinced about a spherical Earth. Despite plenty of publicity, the space race eroded Shenton's support in Britain until 1967, when he started to become famous due to the Apollo program.[145]

    In 1972, Shenton's role was taken over by Charles K. Johnson, a correspondent from California, US. He incorporated the IFERS and steadily built up the membership to about 3,000. He spent years examining the studies of flat and round Earth theories and proposed evidence of a conspiracy against flat Earth: "The idea of a spinning globe is only a conspiracy of error that Moses, Columbus, and FDR all fought..." His article was published in the magazine Science Digest, 1980. It goes on to state, "If it is a sphere, the surface of a large body of water must be curved. The Johnsons have checked the surfaces of Lake Tahoe and the Salton Sea without detecting any curvature."[152]

    The Society declined in the 1990s, following a fire at its headquarters in California and the death of Johnson in 2001.[153] It was revived as a website in 2004 by Daniel Shenton (no relation to Samuel Shenton). He believes that no one has provided proof that the world is not flat.[154]

    Internet-era resurgence

    In the Internet era, the proliferation of communications technology and social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook[155] and Twitter have given individuals, famous[156] or otherwise, a platform to spread pseudo-scientific ideas and build stronger followings. The flat-Earth conjecture has flourished in this environment.[6][7][157] Social media and the internet, furthermore, have made it easier for like-minded theorists to connect with one another and mutually reinforce their beliefs. In other words, social media has had a "levelling effect", in that experts have less sway in the public mind than they used to.[158]

    Organizations skeptical of fringe beliefs have occasionally performed tests to demonstrate the local curvature of the Earth. One of these, conducted by members of the Independent Investigations Group, at the Salton Sea on June 10, 2018, was attended also by supporters of a flat Earth, and the encounter between the two groups was recorded by the National Geographic Explorer. This experiment successfully demonstrated the curvature of the earth via the disappearance over distance of boat-based and shore-based targets.[159][160]

    Conspiracy theory

    Members of the Flat Earth Society and other flat-Earthers claim that NASA and other government agencies conspire to delude the public into believing the Earth is spherical.[161] According to the most widely spread version of current flat Earth theory, NASA is guarding the Antarctic ice wall that surrounds Earth.[161] Flat earthers argue that NASA photoshops its satellite images, based on observations that the color of the oceans changes from image to image and that continents seem to be in different places.[162] The publicly perpetuated image is kept up through a large-scale practice of "compartmentalization", according to which only a select number of individuals have knowledge about the truth.[163]

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    Flat Earthers always focus on the curvature of the Earth as seen at the surface because it is one of the harder ways to prove the Earth is round. There is no flat earth model that can explain the motions of the Sun, Moon, stars and planets in the sky. The models I have seen make predictions that are demonstrably false, while the round Earth, heliocentric model explains all those motions, all with a single simple law of gravity.

    Even if we lived on a planet the size of Jupiter, we could tell it was round just by viewing the sky.

    Most Flat Earthers don't even has one iota of an understanding of simple geometry, trigonometry or three dimensional thinking. Their arguments will only sway like minded people. It's quite amazing to see the terrible thinking skills they demonstrate in their youtube videos. Astounding!

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    Unbelievable as it sounds, like BS to me, I have come across an actual Flat Earther, astonished as I was, I pointed out that you can see the curvature of the horizon, ships 'falling' off the horizon in the distance, etc, but she said that this is the illusion of distance not curvature, at which point I dropped the subject and moved onto another topic

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    Veteran Member skepticalbip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowy Man View Post
    ... snip ...

    There is no flat earth model that can explain the motions of the Sun, Moon, stars and planets in the sky.

    ... snip ...
    That's not quite true. The geocentric model of the universe does so well at explaining the motions of the Sun, Moon, stars and planets in the sky that it is still used by astronomers to position their telescopes and for celestial navigation by ships. The geocentric model doesn't specify either a spheroid or flat Earth but either would still work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowy Man View Post
    ... snip ...

    There is no flat earth model that can explain the motions of the Sun, Moon, stars and planets in the sky.

    ... snip ...
    That's not quite true. The geocentric model of the universe does so well at explaining the motions of the Sun, Moon, stars and planets in the sky that it is still used by astronomers to position their telescopes and for celestial navigation by ships. The geocentric model doesn't specify either a spheroid or flat Earth but either would still work.
    I said “no flat earth model” can explain the motions. In principle a geocentric model can partially explain some celestial movements but not all of them.

    The heliocentric model is still better from a physics point of view.
    Last edited by Shadowy Man; 08-22-2019 at 06:58 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DBT View Post
    Unbelievable as it sounds, like BS to me, I have come across an actual Flat Earther, astonished as I was, I pointed out that you can see the curvature of the horizon, ships 'falling' off the horizon in the distance, etc, but she said that this is the illusion of distance not curvature, at which point I dropped the subject and moved onto another topic
    They’ve somehow been convinced that “perspective effects” account for this. But they’d never be able to diagram the geometry of a sunset. They also don’t realize that the “vanishing point” is actually infinitely far away.

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    During the campaign I thought surely there could not be many people who woul fall for Trump's cpn job. I was wrong.

    I thought the same on FE until the reponses on actual meetings.

    Democracy is supposed to depend on a educated reasoning population. How can one get through any high school and believe FE?

    We see some of this stuff from elected educated officials. We may be thousands of years away from a rational civilization.

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    Contributor DBT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    During the campaign I thought surely there could not be many people who woul fall for Trump's cpn job. I was wrong.

    I thought the same on FE until the reponses on actual meetings.

    Democracy is supposed to depend on a educated reasoning population. How can one get through any high school and believe FE?

    We see some of this stuff from elected educated officials. We may be thousands of years away from a rational civilization.
    Check out some of the American gun forums that have general discussion. There are so many young earth creationists to be seen that its downright scary .....

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    Democracy is supposed to depend on a educated reasoning population. How can one get through any high school and believe FE?
    The real problem isn't the lack of education, it's the supreme confidence these people have in the face of their lack of education.

    "I don't understand the physics, therefore the physics must be wrong."

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    Veteran Member James Brown's Avatar
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    Basic Dunning-Kruger effect.

    I suspect there have always been stubborn crackpots. It's just that the internet gives everyone a megaphone, so we hear about them more easily.

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