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“...the field of Ufology has failed to produce one concrete example of alien visitation, from any dimension....The basic appeal of Ufology for the masses is that it is a belief system, rather than a field of scientific investigation....After a generation of flying saucer stories with no conclusive result, the burden of proof remains squarely on the UFOlogists....”
Ian Ridpath, Flying Saucers Thirty Years on - New Scientist July 14th 1977
Ufology is still struggling to achieve scientific and popular respectability, so it is perhaps understandable that public pronouncements of ufologists would be primarily in the persuasive rather than expository vein. It can thus be observed that all the traditional tricks of the Madison Avenue advertising executive's trade are followed: appeals to authority ("Jimmy Carter saw a UFO"; "our heroic astronauts have seen UFOs"); assertions of the consequent ("the Universe is so large that other civilizations must exist out there!"); the bandwagon appeal ("Most Americans now believe in UFOs''); the conspiratorial appeal("The government knows all about it but is hiding the truth"); and the salvation appeal ("The people from space will come to bail us out of our self-indicted miseries"). It is not necessary at first to examine the actual validity of such statements.
What is important is to recognise them for what they are: tactics of illogical persuasion.
...ufologists in general ...have preferred instead to continually recirculate and embellish the same stories. The authenticity of UFO reports, as portrayed in the popular press, therefore remains highly questionable -and justly so. .....
Such a problem with the "disproof" of UFO evidence points to yet another major weakness of the philosophical foundations of Ufology. The burden of proof, which customarily lies with the claimants of super normality (or, in a criminal trial, of the guilt of the accused, who is "innocent until proven guilty"), has been shifted to the sceptics, who are in the case of UFOs required to disprove the evidence. In the Carter-UFO and the astronaut-UFOs, it was the sceptics who investigated and solved the cases - while ufologists assumed the cases were authentic until proven otherwise (and most still believe so).
And yet the rules of science are clear: extraordinary claims demand extraordinary proof. The thesis of Ufology is an indictment against the ability of contemporary science to explain the Universe, and it must prove such an indictment as every other such proponent must prove it: the need for a modification of our current model of reality must be established beyond reasonable doubt.
Where is the "Ufology" movement likely to be after another 30 years? Perhaps new evidence will finally appear which can stand up to scientific scrutiny. Perhaps self-styled ufologists will establish truly scientific standards of evidence, will accept the burden of proof, will produce "falsifiable" theories, and will seek to formulate their science on positive rather than negative logic. Perhaps something significant will come out of this after all.
“The Failure of the Science of Ufology” - James Oberg, New Scientist Magazine Oct 1979”
originally posted by: Moresby
Defense of the status quo tarted up as a "critique" of Ufology.
There's way too much of this on ATS in recent years.
originally posted by: RoScoLaz4 too many CGI vids,
....Amongst all the disinformation and crazy stories there just needs to be 1 single bit of proof. It doesn't need to be a smoking gun huge piece of proof. Just things like implants, reliable sightings etc.....
- i also noticed a shift in the aesthetics in ET hunting. the same lot is now focusing on obscure mars pictures, or distant star anomalies, even Jupiter's moons to Ceres; More plausible causes for ETs, yet still foolishly and blindly accepting far fetched theories. the medium has changed so to speak, but the genre is still the same.