“History will be made in Canada this year and Edmonton will be put on the flat map,” reads the Facebook event page for an international flat-earthers’ conference that is coming to Canada in August.
The Flat Earth International Conference is headed by Edmonton-native Robbie Davidson of Kryptoz Media, who says that the many events he’s hosted over the years often sell out months in advance.
The upcoming event’s Facebook page states that the conference will be held at West Edmonton Mall on Aug. 9-10, and over 2,000 people have marked that they are “interested” in attending.
Flat-earthers are a community of people that do not believe the Earth is round, despite NASA firmly asserting that it is.
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“We all really severely do not believe we are on a ball spinning through space,” Davidson explained in an interview with Global News. He added that those who entertain the possibility that the Earth is flat identify with several key arguments.
The main point Davidson emphasizes is what he sees as a lack of empirical evidence proving that the Earth is spherical.
“We think science is good, we’re not anti-science,” he said. “A lot of science has moved away from what science is supposed to be, it’s very theoretical. What experiment do you actually do to prove the curvature of the Earth?”
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In addition, Davidson explained that he would stop hosting flat Earth conferences should an “experiment” ever be developed to prove that the Earth is round. He also cited satellite imagery as inadequate proof of the shape of the Earth, arguing that the majority of these images are composite or computer generated/rendered images.
“Until something is 100 per cent verified, I think a lot of people in this community are going to demand different answers,” he said.
The Flat Earth Society dismisses photographic evidence and space travel as conspiracies.
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“The most commonly accepted explanation of this is that the space agencies of the world are involved in a conspiracy faking space travel and exploration,” the group states. “This likely began during the Cold War’s ‘Space Race,’ in which the U.S.S.R. and U.S.A. were obsessed with beating each other into space to the point that each faked their accomplishments in an attempt to keep pace with the other’s supposed achievements.”
NASA clearly states on its website and through other research documents that the Earth is indeed round. The space agency’s website cites ancient Greek research – which measured the shadows during summer solstice and also calculated the Earth’s circumference – as well as modern methods for measuring the shape of the Earth.
“Today, scientists use geodesy, which is the science of measuring Earth’s shape, gravity and rotation. Geodesy provides accurate measurements that show Earth is round. With GPS and other satellites, scientists can measure Earth’s size and shape to within a centimetre. Pictures from space also show Earth is round like the moon,” a statement on NASA’s website reads.
Furthermore, scientists have long rejected the possibility that the Earth could be flat, and many are perplexed that such claims still thrive in certain circles.
“It’s hard to explain or understand a theory that you know even before you start thinking about it, is wrong,” Bryan Gaensler, director of the University of Toronto’s Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, previously told Global News.