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The idea that "eyewitness testimony is unreliable"

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posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 11:43 AM
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reply to post by draknoir2
 



Most of those cheerleading in this thread are not really interested in honest discussion of the strengths and limitations of eyewitness testimony, but rather are just here to assign labels and bash a particular hypothetical POV... or star those who do it for them


I don't know how many other ways to describe my purely hypothetical, speculative, imaginative thought on the only thing i personally believe would make this not a physical object. But nobody objects to speculation that this could be something from another planet. The mere suggestion of something mundane sends people into a tizzy. Even funnier is that I would fully endorce this as a real object if that's where the discussion would lead. Instead, I get suckered into these battles over somones BS arguments. Again, I fully expect to be on the unpopular side of the "discussion". I could care less.




posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 11:52 AM
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JimOberg
Returning to the fascinating issue of assessing human perception, let me draw attention to two old essays of mine that I belive offer useful insights for disputation here.

At a conference debate with Bruce Maccabee in 1985 I spoke on a 'Black Box Theory" of UFO perception, and raised points which I'm sad to see still undiscussed by the UFO community:

www.debunker.com...

Specific to the queston of pilot perception, I discussed two cases where pilot perception had occurred -- please argue that it did NOT, if you can -- here:

www.zipworld.com.au...


edit on 31-3-2014 by JimOberg because: typos


Just want to make sure good information is at the top and not my silly rants. Thanks for getting this back on track.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 12:06 PM
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JimOberg
Returning to the fascinating issue of assessing human perception, let me draw attention to two old essays of mine that I belive offer useful insights for disputation here.


I like your idea of the "black box", especially as it might apply to sentient perceptions. And, you are right, none of these things need be anything extraordinary.

As a software engineer I work with all sort of "black box"; usually an "object"/"class" written by someone else. The thing with the black box is; One doesn't need to know "how" it does what it does, we only need to know that it does it, and of course "what" it does. And this "what" can easily be seen by analyzing it's output.

One of the serious issues I "see" in Ufology is the lack of an adequate database. By that I mean one that can be used to warehouse the existing in an orderly and relational manner. One that can be "mined" for "data".

In the present discussion two camps appeared, one that said eye witness data was valid, and another that stated it was unreliable. In reality both are correct. this kind of perceptual data is often seemingly different from one observer to another. But, when all the data is collected, correlated, analyzed; the reality of the observation becomes apparent. Even some of the finer grained detail may come out of the analysis.

We are perhaps spending too much time trying to reverse engineer a "black box", that does not have a consistent internal operating schema, and not enough time analyzing it's output.




posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 12:30 PM
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ZetaRediculian
reply to post by tanka418
 


says the guy with alien DNA and that can summon alien spacehips at will and who can predict the future


"Summon alien spaceships"?!?? Yeah, I guess I may have said something like that. To be honest, I did miss the "window" by a couple of hours, and of course, the reporting on such events seriously sucks. I mean, having to rely on someone in another state, 100's of miles away for a simple "sighting" report...it can take weeks for that. The only other event was also a "near miss" as I recollect...but was recorded on another "forum site" several years ago...so the data to support these claims, while probably still exists, somewhere, will be difficult at best to find.

As for "predicting the future: I still have 12 days...and then y'all will have to wait, like me, for any reports.

Oh, on the DNA; I never said it was "alien"...however, probability strongly suggests it is not related to anything Terrestrial, though, it is "Human".

And, while I should wait for sometime after tomorrow (seriously bad timing)...(you're gonna love this ZR...but try to keep it civil...please)




Finally; I am not really interested in debating, or arguing any thing concerning myself; yall are invited to know about me, so that you may begin to understand me, and what I believe. I will attempt to refrain from "dissing" your belief system, and I expect you to afford me the same.

93!

edit on 31-3-2014 by tanka418 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 12:37 PM
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reply to post by tanka418
 


well, that was very well said. The data would have to be categorized objectively which could be an issue. Also is there really enough data? Some of these accounts are remarkable on their own. Then again there is a large ammount of data from sources like bluebook where there is number of known objects reported as UFOs. Did you ever consider running the bluebook data through one of your Bayesian programs? Anyway, good post. Keep it up.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 03:05 PM
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ZetaRediculian
reply to post by tanka418
 


well, that was very well said. The data would have to be categorized objectively which could be an issue. Also is there really enough data? Some of these accounts are remarkable on their own. Then again there is a large ammount of data from sources like bluebook where there is number of known objects reported as UFOs. Did you ever consider running the bluebook data through one of your Bayesian programs? Anyway, good post. Keep it up.


You are right, the data would need properly "categorized".

Yes, I feel there is enough data, the major issue is that it is all scattered to the four winds, and while it could be collected, and entered into a database, it could prove a rather monumental project. Although, using just the data from published surveys may prove quite useful, especially with their "known objects" .

Would like to see the results of a Bluebook analysis using modern data analysis technique, but, I have other projects that much of my time. Although, its kinda funny...my current project is an advanced data acquisition and management system that could easily be tasked to do that very analysis...




posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 03:22 PM
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draknoir2

MaximRecoil


And another:


draknoir2
There's a good reason for this: eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable.


draknoir2
There's a good reason for this: eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable.



Show me where it says "COMPLETELY", "ALL", or "ALWAYS". They are not synonyms for "NOTORIOUSLY".


You are right: "notoriously" is not a synonym for "completely", "all", or "always", and of course I never suggested it was. It is the lack of a qualifier such as the word "some" that denotes "all" by default. For example:

"Cars are red."

Would you raise an eyebrow if someone said that to you? A correct statement would be, e.g.:

"Some cars are red," or "Many cars are red."


I fully explained what was meant in the posts you ignored in favor of arguing about arguments and arguing.


The issue here is making blanket claims, which is a bad habit that a lot of people have on internet forums, and in general. This entire thread is about applying a blanket claim to eyewitness reports. I haven't ignored the rest of your content; overall it is more or less reasonable, except for the blanket claim, which is contradictory to the more reasonable content.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 03:43 PM
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tanka418
One of the serious issues I "see" in Ufology is the lack of an adequate database. By that I mean one that can be used to warehouse the existing in an orderly and relational manner. One that can be "mined" for "data".


How about landing traces



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 03:45 PM
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reply to post by MaximRecoil
 


Speaking of blanket statements, let's go back to the OP.

Please explain how eyewitness testimony alone can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that "intelligently controlled aircraft with capabilities above and beyond the capabilities of publicly-known aircraft" exist.

I am particularly interested in how you came to the conclusion that witnesses cannot be mistaken, influenced by other eyewitnesses, pop culture or the media, or flat out lying for personal gain, be it attention or compensation.

Give THIS a browse.

Nobody really cares if someone lies about seeing a UFO, but sometimes false or inaccurate testimony can get someone killed.
edit on 31-3-2014 by draknoir2 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 03:52 PM
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I can't tell you how many qualified Air Force and Commercial pilots I've heard make UFO reports in the 60's through the 80's who have witnessed something flying in the sky at a phenomenal speed and said something like, "It sure wasn't us. I mean this thing had to have been traveling at least 1800 miles an hour and we don't have anything that moves that fast."

Sure, they are credible witnesses, but unfortunately most pilots don't have the security clearance to know what DARPA is up to. The trouble is we did have experimental aircraft in the skies capable of reaching speeds of 2,200 miles an hour; the pilots making UFO reports just didn't know about it.

en.wikipedia.org...

Most UFO sightings are witnessed by people who see a light the sky. In this day and age most human beings assume it is "them" (ETs) when it's actually a safer bet that it's "us."

That doesn't necessarily mean that there are no ET's, but it does mean that most nations experimenting with high-speed craft would just as soon you assume it is ETs rather than identify it as a top-secret government project.

edit on 31-3-2014 by Riddles because: (typos)

edit on 31-3-2014 by Riddles because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 04:48 PM
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Riddles
I can't tell you how many qualified Air Force and Commercial pilots I've heard make UFO reports in the 60's through the 80's who have witnessed something flying in the sky at a phenomenal speed and said something like, "It sure wasn't us. I mean this thing had to have been traveling at least 1800 miles an hour and we don't have anything that moves that fast."

Sure, they are credible witnesses, but unfortunately most pilots don't have the security clearance to know what DARPA is up to. The trouble is we did have experimental aircraft in the skies capable of reaching speeds of 2,200 miles an hour; the pilots making UFO reports just didn't know about it.

en.wikipedia.org...

Most UFO sightings are witnessed by people who see a light the sky. In this day and age most human beings assume it is "them" (ETs) when it's actually a safer bet that it's "us."

That doesn't necessarily mean that there are no ET's, but it does mean that most nations experimenting with high-speed craft would just as soon you assume it is ETs rather than identify it as a top-secret government project.

edit on 31-3-2014 by Riddles because: (typos)

edit on 31-3-2014 by Riddles because: (no reason given)


My neighbor is a pilot for an airline and told me most of them will never talk about what they have seen and the speed is NOT 1,800 MPH, it is 18,000 MPH and can turn on a dime or stop in place!



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 05:03 PM
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draknoir2
reply to post by MaximRecoil
 


Speaking of blanket statements, let's go back to the OP.

Please explain how eyewitness testimony alone can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that "intelligently controlled aircraft with capabilities above and beyond the capabilities of publicly-known aircraft" exist.


So, you said "speaking of blanket statements", and then brought up something that contains no blanket statements at all? In any event, I've explained the concept of reasonable doubt several times in this thread. When you have strong evidence of an event (and multiple eyewitness reports that agree on the relevant details of an event is strong evidence), you have proof beyond a reasonable doubt, unless of course, reasonable doubt can be established. One way to establish reasonable doubt is to offer an alternate plausible theory of events, which fits the evidence. Another way is to attack the credibility of the witnesses (those attacks have to be legitimate attacks, such as proof of mental illness, intoxication, history of hoaxing, etc.). It has been 8 years and no one has established reasonable doubt in the O'Hare case.


I am particularly interested in how you came to the conclusion that witnesses cannot be mistaken, influenced by other eyewitnesses, pop culture or the media, or flat out lying for personal gain, be it attention or compensation.


See above.


Give THIS a browse.

Nobody really cares if someone lies about seeing a UFO, but sometimes false or inaccurate testimony can get someone killed.


It is possible that someone could be proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt based on the available evidence, and be not guilty in reality. Someone could be "framed" for example, or an extremely unlikely series of events could have naturally "conspired" against him.
"Beyond a reasonable doubt" isn't the same thing as "conclusive". As far as I know, there is no publicly-available conclusive evidence of the existence of aircraft capable of going from hovering to extreme velocity in a split second.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 05:44 PM
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waltwillis


My neighbor is a pilot for an airline and told me most of them will never talk about what they have seen and the speed is NOT 1,800 MPH, it is 18,000 MPH and can turn on a dime or stop in place!


I was quoting pilots that appeared on one of Steven Greer's "Disclosure" films. The speed they spoke of was 1,800 mph, which they believed was unheard of at the time those pilots made their sighting.

However, the SR71 was in operation at the time (out of Groom Lake) and reached speeds of 2,193.2 mph.

You say "speeds of 18,000 mph." Please show me proof that somebody didn't witness a holographic projection aimed at the sky…



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 06:56 PM
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reply to post by MaximRecoil
 



Another way is to attack the credibility of the witnesses (those attacks have to be legitimate attacks, such as proof of mental illness, intoxication, history of hoaxing, etc.).
I disagree. There is no need to attack the credibility of witnesses about their mental health or any of the the things you listed. Those things can become rather apparent. Please comment on the links Jim Oberg posted for example. Do you think they were on drugs? Of course not.


It has been 8 years and no one has established reasonable doubt in the O'Hare case.

I am not sure what reasonable doubt you are looking for. That they didn't see something? I am pretty sure they saw something. There is no way to verify what they saw. You only have witness testimony to verify other witness testimony.

With the links Jim posted, you have witness testimony together with verification of what they actually saw. That is much stronger evidence.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 08:48 PM
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reply to post by tanka418
 


Interesting video.
Here is how I spent my youth. I don't see what magic spells are going to do me at this point.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 09:29 PM
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ZetaRediculian
reply to post by MaximRecoil
 



Another way is to attack the credibility of the witnesses (those attacks have to be legitimate attacks, such as proof of mental illness, intoxication, history of hoaxing, etc.).
I disagree. There is no need to attack the credibility of witnesses about their mental health or any of the the things you listed. Those things can become rather apparent.


As I said, in order to establish reasonable doubt, there is a need to do such things.


Please comment on the links Jim Oberg posted for example. Do you think they were on drugs? Of course not.


JimOberg established reasonable doubt in some specific sightings, by providing an alternate theory of events which fits the evidence rather well, and this alternate theory of events was plausible, because of the documented events going on the area at the time. As I said, a plausible alternate theory of events which fits the evidence is one way to establish reasonable doubt. No one has done that with the O'Hare sighting; all you have done, for example, is throw things at the wall, hoping something will stick. The FAA's alternate theory of events was a farce, that didn't fit any of the evidence in any way. From page 97 of the NARCAP report that you linked to earlier in this thread:


8.2 Possible Explanations for the UAP
Within several days of the event Elizabeth Isham Cory, an FAA official, suggested that all the
witnesses had seen and misperceived was an abnormal weather phenomenon or perhaps ground lights
shining upward and reflecting off the bottom of the cloud layer at the time. "That night was a perfect
atmospheric condition in terms of low [cloud] ceiling and a lot of airport lights," she said. "When the
lights shine up into the clouds, sometimes you can see funny things. That's our take on it." It should
be noted that witness B and J.H. confirmed, independently, that the airport (nighttime) ramp lights had
not yet come on. If the visual description of the UAP made by all of the present eye witnesses that
were interviewed are accurate this particular explanation is absurd. It is so unreasonable as to be
ludicrous and begs the question, how could someone who did not even see this particular UAP come to
such a conclusion? As Maranto (2007) succinctly put it, "The answer to these questions (how can
weather account for what was described) is that…the weather explanation is just complete and utter
nonsense."



I am not sure what reasonable doubt you are looking for. That they didn't see something? I am pretty sure they saw something.


The "reasonable doubt [I am] looking for" is with regard to them seeing a disc shaped object hover for a spell, then accelerate upward to high velocity nearly instantly, "punching a hole" in the clouds in the process. This is a lot different than merely "something".


There is no way to verify what they saw. You only have witness testimony to verify other witness testimony.


Your first sentence contradicts your second sentence. Also, "verify" doesn't necessarily mean to conclusively prove something; it can also mean "substantiate".


With the links Jim posted, you have witness testimony together with verification of what they actually saw. That is much stronger evidence.


See above.
edit on 3/31/2014 by MaximRecoil because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 10:38 PM
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MaximRecoil

ZetaRediculian
reply to post by MaximRecoil
 


"Another way is to attack the credibility of the witnesses (those attacks have to be legitimate attacks, such as proof of mental illness, intoxication, history of hoaxing, etc.). "
I disagree. There is no need to attack the credibility of witnesses about their mental health or any of the the things you listed. Those things can become rather apparent.


As I said, in order to establish reasonable doubt, there is a need to do such things. .....


I don't think so. The scary part of human misperception and misinterpretation isn't that it necessarily reflects a failure or weakness of the witness's senses and recognition algorithms. It may be the result of the entirely proper functioning of the witness recognition processing when overstressed by unusual partial perceptions as cues leading to particular memories which are triggered to fill in the gaps. These are normally non-volitional mental reflexes over which we all have minimal control.

It's past time to discard the invidious myth that perceiving a UFO is evidence of sensory or cognitive dysfunction. Far more often it can be the most 'reasonable' instinctive choice, even though it happens in such cases to probably be inaccurate.

BTW, thanks for the kind words on my links. As you may suspect, it's a 'foot in the door' of the potential for witness misperception. Once it is established that something CAN happen because it HAS happened, the question facing us is only how OFTEN it can happen and how its happening may be detected by testimony analysis.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 11:53 PM
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reply to post by MaximRecoil
 



all you have done, for example, is throw things at the wall, hoping something will stick.

Yeah you have said that pretty often. The only thing I have done is try discuss some elements of perception accurately. For instance, people don't have to be drunk or crazy to think they saw something. That is the kind of ignorance I am trying to correct. Hopefully that will stick If I keep throwing that at your wall.

I have said already that the explanations that were offered as 'official' didn't really help. I also commented how that there was no radar returns didn't really mean anything either. So I am confused by your insistence on this caricature. Despite your impression, I have no desire to prove this case was not a UFO. This case is interesting to me for a couple of reasons. One, it is a good case. Two, the demeanor of the witnesses is rather calm from what I can gather and there seems to be an attempt to really identify the object.

That I speculate on some other possibility like optical illusion is rather innocuous as far as I can tell and really has no bearing on the case overall. That it bothers you is interesting.


Your first sentence contradicts your second

Let me revise it so it makes more sense to you.

There is no way to verify (with pictures, video, radar, etc) what they saw. You only have witness testimony to verify other witness testimony. I am not jumping to the conclusion that it was something really unusual but it doesn't seem like it can be ruled out either. I am not sure why that is such a horrid thing to say. Your "reasonable doubt" requirement is meaningless to me.



posted on Apr, 1 2014 @ 07:28 AM
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reply to post by ZetaRediculian
 


Plain and simple - eyewitness testimony alone will prove nothing beyond a shadow of a doubt save that the eyewitness said something.


This is the correct response to the OP. Maximum Recoil does not have the power to render UFO-related eyewitness testimony reliable by declaration, regardless of his strength of belief in the subject. It is the weakest form of scientific evidence and should always be the most heavily scrutinized, especially when the claim is extraordinary.

The field of UFOlogy is riddled with charlatans, liars, spiritualistic New Agers, professional "experiencers", and flat out nut jobs. Anyone who thinks eyewitness testimony alone is sufficient in this polluted field of study is self-deluded.



posted on Apr, 1 2014 @ 09:31 AM
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reply to post by draknoir2
 




This is the correct response to the OP. Maximum Recoil does not have the power to render UFO-related eyewitness testimony reliable by declaration, regardless of his strength of belief in the subject

He demands reasonable doubt. Not unlike the other like minded folk that unreasonably demand there be an adequate explanation for every case. It is perfectly fine to believe whatever you want but it really helps to become familiar with the subject that would produce the "reasonable doubt". That's his personal struggle, not mine. It is painfully obvious to me when someone says that you have to show that people were mentally ill, using drugs, etc., in order for misperceptions to be considered that they have zero grip on a topic they are trying come across as an expert on. There is zero support for this in any of the thousands of current articles on the subject. This may have been the common wisdom during the bluebook era when Hynek et al. had their "crackpot" category for cases.

I enjoy my freedom to speculate and explore these cases the way I see fit without having to be bullied by self proclaimed experts from the internet. Their commentary is meaningless.



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