As predicted, world media is eagerly using the Matthew Williams crop circle hoax story to disinform the public about these enigmatic formations.
The fairy tales that began in the British media a few days ago have spread as far afield as Australia, and may be expected to appear soon in the United States unless the story is pushed aside by election coverage.
The gist of the coverage is that the existence of Mr. Williams’s hoaxed crop circle proves that all the formations are hoaxes. No attempt at all is being made to refer to any of the serious research that has been done into the actual origin of the formations.
Whether the coverage is intentionally misleading or simply a result of ignorant and poorly informed editors making fallacious assumptions cannot be known.
Key excerpts from some of the stories:
From the Guardian:
“Williams, 29, of Bishops Cannings, near Devizes, Wilts, decided to act after becoming incensed by the claims of Michael Glickman, a former professor of architecture who has studied crop circles for many years.
“He heard Professor Glickman claim on an American radio show that is was impossible for a human to create a seven pointed star shape in a crop field – it could only have been created by aliens.”
The truth is that Glickman never said that the crop circle “could only have been created by aliens” on Dreamland. (The only radio US radio program he discussed the matter on.)
The Guardian’s story continues:
“When the presenter challenged him to prove the professor wrong, Williams went under cover of darkness with his friend to the field at Manor Farm, West Overton, near Marlborough, to create the design. He then emailed a picture of the work to the presenter. It was passed on to the professor who alerted police.”
Mr. Williams never emailed Whitley Strieber a picture of the work. He emailed Whitley Strieber a drawing of what it would look like. Strieber was never contacted by the police and never gave anything to the police.
To read the Guardian’s story, click here.
From the Skynews LineOne News Wire:
“… the matter was reported to police by former professor of architecture Michael Glickman, who has been studying crop circles for many years. Mr Glickman, who lives near Devizes, and has written books on the subject, claimed on an American radio show that is was impossible for a human to create the star in a crop field.”
In the real world, Glickman said no such thing. What he did say was that some of the more intricate circles could not have been created by the human hand, an assertion that so far has not been disproven. On the contrary, the intricacy of the formations created during the summer of 2000 convinced many former skeptics that something very strange was definitely going on.
To read LineOne’s story, click here.
From the London Daily Express, Nov. 7, 2000
“It’s not aliens who make mysterious crop circles but a man called Matthew Williams, it was revealed on Monday.
“Williams, 29, became the first man in Britain to be prosecuted for creating a crop circle and was fined ?100 and ordered to pay ?40 costs.
“He admitted damaging corn while creating a seven-point star design but said he’d done it to prove wrong an academic who said only aliens could make such elaborate designs.”
The assertion in the first line of this story seems designed to convince the reader that the case is closed. And again the phrase that Williams had “said he’d done it to prove wrong an academic who said only aliens could make such elaborate designs” is incorrect. Mr. Williams did not say that he’d done it for this reason, and Michael Glickman (the academic) never made such a claim.
Nowhere do any of the stories refer to any of the serious scientific work that has been done on the formations, most notably that of Dr. William C. Levengood and the BLT Research Group, despite the fact that their 1999 paper, “Dispersion of Energies in Worldwide Crop Formations,” was not only published in an authoritative scientific journal, but information about how to obtain it is easily accessible on the Crop Circle Connector website. To read about the report click here.
Indeed, it is so easily available, that the failure of the media to acknowledge its existence would appear to be intentional. Alun Rees, the author of the Daily Express story, in particular, should explain why he made the assertion that he did without making any reference to the existence of this research. It is impossible for a professional reporter to claim that it could not be found. A child of ten interested in crop circles could find it.
Whitley Strieber also came under fire on message boards and in news groups as a false story that he had “ordered” or “commissioned” the circle was spread across the internet.
The following response (excerpted here) was published in one of the forums:
—– Original Message —– From: Robert Selover To: UFOTruth Sent: Wednesday, November 08, 2000 12:32 AM Subject: [UFOTruth] Setting the record STRAIGHT! re “who ordered” Matthews to create a crop circle:
UFOTruth – my friends – just yesterday, if I recall correctly, a good, decent, honorable man was publicly slandered on this list with respect to his allegedly having “ordered” a certain Mr. Matthews to create a hoaxed crop circle. I had proceeded to whip up a rather scathing two-pager yesterday as a “bulldozer/steam-roller” response, including some extracts from British papers but since absolutely no-one on any of the other lists I subscribe to or any of the websites I usually visit even obliquely hinted at any kind of complicity on the part of Whitley, I decided to let it “cook’ for a day or two to see what developed – I KNEW Streiber was NOT involved. In fact, one of the extracts I was going to include (and I’m including herein) was his “Whitley’s Journal” entry for 11-5-2000 wherein he was blissfully unaware that he had “ordered” this Matthews guy to do anything and near the end of that entry, he, in fact, alluded to intelligent, non-earthly forces being involved in circle-making. So, my friends – especially Howard who, to his everlasting credit, publicly stood up for Whitley – Whitley Streiber WAS NOT INVOLVED by the remotest stretch of the imagination. Michael Glickman who, along with Patricia Murray (and I’ve learned this from a few brief conversations with Michael when he’s back in California during the Winter) , scrape the bottom of the “money barrel” every year just to get back over there and examine/research/write about the genuine circles in SC Magazine and who is a respected researcher in this field, did not “order” Matthews to do anything. Rather, Glickman maintained that no humans could have created that magnificent star out in the field, Matthews said it could be done, Glickman possibly said words to the effect “prove it” and so Matthews took that as his excuse for willfully trespassing on someone else’s property and, in the process, damaging the crop.
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