The Flat Earth Society
01 Mar 2019 by Tom Bishop
It has come to our attention that a documentary titled Behind the Curve has appeared on Netflix and is introducing significant numbers of new people into the Flat Earth discussions. After viewing this piece we feel that the work depicts a poorly researched Flat Earth Theory. It should be noted that the Flat Earth Society was not consulted with the science of the documentary and that the topics discussed should be further researched.
Questions have come up about the light experiment at the end of the film. We point to the following from an account of a self-proclaimed Round Earth proponent who was present at the Jeran event [archive link] :
"In about 10 tries, with the light held waist-high at 17 feet above water we never clearly saw it through the center panel hole. On one of the attempts, maybe the fourth of ten, we clearly saw it when Enrique lifted it over his head. On that one, Jeran asked him to raise it and lower it a few times, and it would appear when Enrique raised it and vanish when he lowered it. That was the "gasp" moment. Jeran said, "that's interesting." I noted it was the prediction for a round Earth. When they repeated the whole procedure, it did not happen again. I suggested having Enrique move from side-to-side a bit when occluded by the panel, in case it was lateral alignment that was off. Jeran accepted the suggestion, but it made no observable difference."
Of about ten observations, the fourth observation was the only one where the event occurred, and the only one which was published in the documentary. Nine of the ten trials did not see the event. The above description of inconsistency suggests the presence of curving light rays in the experiment—refraction. The manner in which the experiment was portrayed in the film by the producers further suggests dishonesty. The documentary does not show the times the event did not occur. Misrepresentation of this nature is called scientific fraud. Had the results of all ten trials been honestly presented it would have, assuredly, been a far different segment.
It should be noted that time lapse photography has shown that the curvature of light rays across long distances can be a regular occurrence. Since ancient times, mankind has used this inconsistent effect as a primary piece of evidence that the Earth was spherical 1.
Per the Ring Laser Gyroscope, the claim that this device can see the rotation of the Earth is the latest in the controversy between Copernicans and Anti-Copernicans on the matter of the Earth's rotation. From the era of Ptolemy, to Tycho Brahe, to conflicts of the Victorian Era, and even to attempts in present day, science has been engaged in the attempt of finding direct and conclusive evidence for the rotation of the Earth 2. When assessing the Ring Laser Gyroscope studies of Earth's rotation, we find that the device does not appear to be measuring the Earth's rotation directly 3.
Regarding other social aspects of the film as presented by Delta-v Productions, we may only comment that it is a non-compelling argument to consult with psychologists rather than to seek the consultation of scientists and experimenters on combating the Flat Earth movement and demonstrating truth on empirical grounds. The Flat Earth Society values scientific integrity and demands direct, conclusive, and repeatable evidence that our Earth is a globe.
Not a discussion about just this article, but the Flat Earth Society in general.
Obviously, this article is a bit of "tongue and cheek", but...your thoughts?
No politics please.