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The Difference Between A Hoax and a Debunking

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posted on Apr, 27 2010 @ 07:29 AM
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Oftentimes here on ATS, we find what seems to be a great story, with what appears to be ample proof that something extremely interesting has happened. Then, through the course of our normal scholarly debate/pursuit, we discover that the truth is not what it appeared to be at the beginning. Now, depending on the particular angle at which this story was portrayed, there are two avenues that it can take. It can either be a hoax, or simply a debunked theory. To better understand which is which, let's look at each one a bit more closely.

If the thread was started with the intent to deceive, we call this a HOAX, as the member submitting the story intended to deceive or perpetuate a hoax to the public. In the event that such is decided, we move the offending thread to The HOAX Forum, where it will reside as a reminder to all that these particular stories are not true.

Now, should a member post something, say a UFO photo, and claim that it's real, then we the membership would look into it further. Should we find that the photo is in fact a forgery, then we label this as simply a debunked thread.

To debunk something means that we've, through research, shown that it's not a valid coherent argument, and needs to be tabled as such. Discussion can still occur on this however, as new information may come to light. The same cannot be said for HOAX threads however, as they are closed and moved as a way to alert others that these stories are not valid.

Please understand the differences between these two different forms of posts while perusing the boards, and be mindful of them when making posts as well.

Remember, a hoax is a deliberate attempt to deceive the audience.

TheBorg
Forum Member and Moderator




posted on Apr, 27 2010 @ 08:09 AM
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Does a Hoax include claiming evidence/proof, or that it is substantiated by research and then after ample opportunity to show this it is not provided?



posted on Apr, 27 2010 @ 04:23 PM
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reply to post by jokei
 


No. We would call that debunked, as the member submitting the claim did not appear to do so with the intent of deceiving the membership. Take the UFO picture analogy I gave above. If the member had created the photo themselves, and submitted saying that it was definitive PROOF of an UFO encounter, then that would be considered a HAOX.

However, if they had submitted a picture that they found, and were wondering about the validity of, only to find out that it was not what it appeared to be, then that would be a debunked photo.

The two are very similar, but there is one signature difference: intent.

Hope this explanation helps.

TheBorg
Forum Member and Moderator



posted on Apr, 27 2010 @ 10:42 PM
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reply to post by TheBorg
 




Now, should a member post something, say a UFO photo, and claim that it's real, then we the membership would look into it further. Should we find that the photo is in fact a forgery, then we label this as simply a debunked thread.


Call me lame but if a someone makes a fake UFO photograph that is a Hoax. The intent of making a fake UFO photo or video has the intention of tricking people.
Now if someone takes a photo of an RC plane and callse it a UFO, through member discussion it can be debunked and shown to be a plane.
I do not see any "debunked threads" here but i do see hoax threads.
But most UFO pictures submitted on ATS normaly come from a "friend".
So i guess the moral of the story is you do not want to get a hoax label on your thread say a friend did it?

www.abovetopsecret.com...
Most of the threads there are all people just posting youtube vids and pics about UFOs, they got debunked and moved to the hoax section.

[edit on 27-4-2010 by zaiger]



posted on Apr, 27 2010 @ 10:45 PM
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Now, should a member post something, say a UFO photo, and claim that it's real,

And claim that its real--isn't that setting out to decieve???
If someone claims to "know all", can't we all agree that is not true? They always go on to provide the "future" to others who naively ask questions. Would that not be a hoax, since they are setting out a deception??


[edit on 27/4/2010 by Chamberf=6]



posted on Apr, 27 2010 @ 11:08 PM
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Originally posted by Chamberf=6
And claim that its real--isn't that setting out to decieve???
If someone claims to "know all", can't we all agree that is not true?


In the law course I took, the specificity of the claim is critical to determining whether or not a claim is considered legally deceptive.

Broad, general claims with no specifics like someone claiming to "know all" might be considered a form of "puffing", which is a legally accepted form of communication, like realizing that two competitors selling products can both claim that their product is "better" than the competitors' product.

When you get into legal troubles is when the claims are specific, like "our product lasts 20% longer then our competitors", this actually requires proof while a claim that the product is simply "better" doesn't require proof. Drawing this back to the UFO analogy, making general claims like someone saying they "know all" isn't a problem in my eyes but providing false specifics is a problem (like the falsified photo example mentioned earlier).



posted on Apr, 28 2010 @ 02:55 AM
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reply to post by TheBorg
 


Sounds like someone better go through the HOAX board and reshuffle some of the UFO "hoaxes" then. LOL

When I was in the UFO in Sydney Australia thread I saw a couple people make a strong argument it wasn't a hoax. Yet the thread's still there rotting in the HOAX section.

Actually I'll even dig up the posts ...

Here on this page:

www.abovetopsecret.com...

4th from the bottom.

And another good argument here, a couple down:

www.abovetopsecret.com...

I can't help but laugh thinking that even right now there's a thread by one of the site owners lamenting how the Anti-Defamation League is "defaming" innocent ATS'ers. Yet the people who have the moderation privileges to determine what's "real" or "not" are doing the same thing to a 40-50 something year old woman because the skeptibunker cheerleading section screamed loud enough for blood.

Guess bias is the word of the day, eh?




posted on Apr, 29 2010 @ 12:30 PM
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Seems to me that EVERY SINGLE post and thread on ATS is "technically" a HOAX. Allow me to explain. Before any new thread or post is created the warning above text box reads:



As we all know matter cannot be created nor destroyed. (Although a few of my posts have went missing in the past.) I was attempting to research the subject of "conservation of matter" but exceeded my "conversation of energy."


But seriously. I realize that "Declaring something a HOAX can often be a tough call, especially when benefit of the doubt is shown regarding intent. Inasmuch as threads often receive sometimes harsh review, I feel that the truth can withstand great scrutinity if truth and facts are on your side.
And conversely, truth and facts can reveal a chink in the armor of a 'theory.' The ole double-edged sword.

However there have been times when I felt something was "debunked" but was allowed to remain in forum. Tough call. Springer mentioned a "Voted off the Island" concept recently in the Isues Thread. I favor that idea. It would feel more "interactive" and enhance enjoyment if one knows the played a part in exposing a ruse.

I'll just strive to make every post count. 1,2,3,4..............

Sorry for the bad jokes. (Sense of humor failure)

My .02¢

[edit on 29-4-2010 by kinda kurious]



posted on Apr, 30 2010 @ 04:46 AM
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Originally posted by TheMalefactor
Sounds like someone better go through the HOAX board and reshuffle some of the UFO "hoaxes" then. LOL

When I was in the UFO in Sydney Australia thread I saw a couple people make a strong argument it wasn't a hoax. Yet the thread's still there rotting in the HOAX section.

Actually I'll even dig up the posts ...

Here on this page:

www.abovetopsecret.com...

4th from the bottom.

And another good argument ....


I'm inclined to agree, and that thread is a good example (even though I disagree with the content of the actual posts you cited)...

I really think that the [HOAX] forum is poorly named, and needlessly attaches that tag to things that may simply be 'enthusiastic misinterpretations' for want of a better phrase. It also seems to reflect poorly on the poster, even though not the originator. Their thread, even if they simply asked for opinions, is labelled a HOAX - so by association, they are...?? Hmm.

In the thread cited above, the OP was certainly not attempting to promote a hoax - he was just asking for opinions. And I don't think the person who posted the images was attempting a hoax either.


I do think that section should be renamed. Eg: "Debunked or Hoax"

Just my 0c worth.



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