Yes, there is such a thing as bad publicity

At least for those of us with dignity. I was recently contacted by a man from the History Channel. How exciting! Not as much as you may think. He wanted to use my mediocre picture of an African pterosaur for the 3rd season of the show “Ancient Aliens”. My response:

As much as i’d love to see my photos on tv, i’m afraid i have to decline. I detest the subject of the show. It is lowly pseudoscience based on no recognizable form of logic. I think the greatest mystery is how that show made it past the first season. So no, you may not use my photo.

The photo wanted for spreading ignorance and falsehoods

Like i want my photos used to promote such horse shit. I hope to one do a review of that show on my youtube channel. The concept is utterly stupid and deserves nothing but scorn. Just a quick update, I’ll have a better post tomorrow.

11 thoughts on “Yes, there is such a thing as bad publicity

  1. Interesting, and perfect timing for me on this subject. The same guy wants to use a picture of mine of a Pterandon from Auckland Museum.

    The title Ancient Aliens had me uneasily puzzled, and he hasn’t responded to my request for a summary and premise of the show. Not having cable I can’t check it out. Is it as bad as it sounds?

    I was opting for a no go. Last time someone tried to use one of my pictures (though in this case it was a palaeo-art reconstruction of mine) it turned out to be for this really weird new-age hybrid creationist site.

    • oh yeah, it’s as bad as it sounds. Their line of reasoning: “I don’t understand how ancient people could have built this. Therefor aliens did.” Seriously that’s half the show. Though it is pretty tame compared to some of the other crap they have peddled: The lid to Pakal the Great’s sarcophagus, thought to show him ascending to heaven, actually depicts him piloting a spacecraft; at an archeological site in South America there’s an energy portal in the side of stone cliff; Thor’s hammer was really alien weaponry; The ancient city of Mohenjo Daro was nuked, etc. I am not kidding. And this show is entering it’s 3rd season…

  2. I remember when I was a little kid, watching parts of “Chariots of the Gods?” with Erik von Daniken. The idea fascinated me as a gullible 10-year old kid who believed that aliens existed (and abducted people). During my sophomore year of college, I found the book in our library and read it. Unfortunately for my childhood dreams (and nightmares), my rapidly-developing bullshit detector flashed red when I was reading it.

    The problem with this sort of crap is the same issue that young earth creationists have: it’s too complex for me to understand, therefore, I’ll blame it on the boogeyman (to borrow a certain nickname for god from Raiders of the Lost Ark). It basically ignores two possibilities, violating the whole testable part of the scientific method: 1) “Maybe the answer is elusive because I’m too stupid to figure it out and there may be someone better informed who I have not yet talked with”, and 2) “Everyone is too stupid to figure it out, but perhaps in the future, someone will figure it out”.

    This, along with young earth creationism, simply boils down to William Paley’s watchmaker argument, which Richard Dawkins succinctly coined “The argument from Ignorance”.

    • Too true. And not just that, but the ridiculous leaps of logic these people make. Like the ancient city of Mojenjo Daro being destroyed by an atomic bomb. Where does one even get an idea like that? Also, Thor’s hammer was really based on sighting of alien weaponry? Mythology doesn’t require a basis in reality! And another great one: ancieant art depicts what appear to be space craft —–> Tribes in New Guinea who had never seen airplanes before built airplane effigies and worshiped them —–> Therefore these ancient people saw space craft! GAH!

      And just like creationists, they sit there smugly, thinking they are right and that scientists don’t like these radical theories because it goes against “entrenched dogma”. I hold true to what Stephen Hawkings said about aliens visiting us “I think it would be a disaster. The extraterrestrials would probably be far in advance of us. The history of advanced races meeting more primitive people on this planet is not very happy, and they were the same species. I think we should keep our heads low.” If aliens visited us in the past, why would they help us in building and share their technology? There is absolutely no reason to think they wouldn’t have enslaved us or just wiped us out.

  3. What in the world could a dinosaur fossil have to do with “Ancient Aliens”, even if the idea were actually based in something akin to fact? …This is a semi-rhetorical question, but I really am curious to know how it could be answered…

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