Talk:NASA's Unexplained Files

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Episode 3: "Hammer of Thor" is available to watch on YouTube, if you can endure the 12 commercial breaks, and the inanity. Leuders (talk) 18:37, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Pennsylvania probe[edit]

If this is about the Kecksburg incident, it's a really bad write-up. As a general rule, articles should be written by people who know what they are writing about.--ZooGuard (talk) 19:24, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

i kid ou not that is the exact thing the show said. Bubba41102Taste the shortness 19:30, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
Is that particular episode of the show online? Because there are at least two other shows with similar titles ("Unexplained Files" and "UFO Files") that are easy to get mixed up. Leuders (talk) 19:41, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
it's on vudu here!overview/653746/NASAs-Unexplained-Files-Life-in-Hell Bubba41102Taste the shortness 19:57, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

believe that the scientists are subject to quote mining[edit]

I have seen some scientists on this show that are actual scientists who don't believe this stuff, so i believe they may be subject of quote mining, it is just a suspicion but it is a decent possibility. Bubba41102Taste the shortness 20:53, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Misleading characterisation of the show[edit]

I am the executive producer of this series. I can live with the fact some people don't like it, but I would expect a site like Rational Wiki to have a more balanced and impartial view of it. Statements like this...

'NASA's Unexplained Files is a television show on the Science Channel where cranks try to promote their conspiracy theories about NASA, and force them upon the general public.' not accurately reflect the content of the show as a whole.

In a given series of NASA's Unexplained Files we will interview between 90 and 100 people. More than 80 percent of those people will be scientists or astronauts, maybe another 10 percent will be historians or journalists and maybe 10 percent will be people with an interesting viewpoint or story to tell. To say that it is a show about 'cranks' simply does not reflect this reality.

The other element of this article I object to is the implication that we have misrepresented scientists' views. These people are really, really smart and we have interviewees with fantastic scientific credentials coming back again and again to take part in the series. Some scientists do not want to take part in the show, and that's fine, but many, many more accept than refuse. The scientists who take part enjoy bringing their work to life, and making it mysterious and fun. They're not afraid of admitting there is tons of stuff they don't understand and can't explain.

'Where's the science?'

At various times, in various stories, we have explained elements of lunar geology, martian geology, planet formation, star formation, orbital mechanics, spacecraft design, the discovery of exoplanets, panspermia, astrobiology, weather phenomena, black holes, imaging technology, solar cycles, magnetic fields and those are just the things I can think of off the top of my head.

If you're not seeing the science in these shows, that suggests you don't want to see it.

I am happy to be accused of sensationalism. I can live with accusations of promoting conspiracy theories. I would would just ask that my critics adhere to the same standards of balance and accuracy that they would demand of the shows.

Thank you for taking the time to write about my show.— Unsigned, by: Tvproducer / talk / contribs

It's RationalWiki, not Wikipedia, there is no Dana NPOV, only Zuul SPOV.--Arisboch ☞✍☜☞✉☜ 11:06, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
If look at the titles and synopses of the episodes at Vudu, I see no episodes that doesn't feature UFOs, conspiracy theories, and the like. I certainly don't see anything science-related, as such. I watched the first 14 minutes of one episode just now (this one), and I count 3 cranks: James Oberg, Nick Pope, and Nick Redfern. It's true that the show offered some non-crank explanation in the way of Story MusgraveWikipedia, but too little, too late, and the cranks and loaded language (like "official reports") dominate. It does indeed offer some science on SETI and such, but that just seems like a setup to make the UFO claim more plausible. ie. seems to "deal" with those science subjects in an UFO/conspiracy context in the same way that a creationist "deals" with Biology, Geology, Astronomy, etc... This page is incomplete, but certainly seem to be in the right ballpark. Carpetsmoker (talk) 13:06, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
I wouldn't call Oberg a crank. Possibly (I haven't seen the video) he was made to look like one by selective editing and taking stuff out of context. Nowhere Man (talk) 15:49, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
It's at about 3:45, and just one brief segment. To be fair, it's not that out-of-context, but I simply assumed he was on the "crank" side because his "astronauts are reliable and can't be wrong" segment sounds rather like a variant of the old "a policeman saw it, so it must be reliable" trope, but he doesn't follow it with any crank statement (Nick Redfern uses the same trope a bit later and does follow it with obvious nonsense) Carpetsmoker (talk) 16:02, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, this isn't Wikipedia. And even Wikipedia doesn't give "fair and balanced" treatment to UFO conspiracy crap. By the way, James Oberg isn't a crank, but the fact that the show is edited in such a way as that someone watching it would get the impression that Oberg and other scientists were supporting cranky ideas is testament to how misleading the show actually is. Leuders (talk) 13:36, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
The core point is that presenting crank hypotheses and reality on equal footing implies a false equivalence, as if both are equally plausible. How would you feel about a show that talks about the "unexplained parts" of the Holocaust, and invites both Holocaust deniers and actual historians on? ("After the break: could crematorium ovens really dispose of that many bodies? And why are there no traces of Zyklon B at Auschwitz?") To be fair, the prose in the article is a little muddled. Maybe I'll take a stab at improving it later. It might be good for someone to do what Carpetsmoker did above, watch episodes, and lay out specific issues with them. --Ymir (talk) 13:46, 15 October 2015 (UTC)
Carpetsmoker looks at some story titles and watches 14 minutes of one episode, sees 3 people who he calls cranks. One of them (James Oberg) has excellent credentials as a bona fide investigator. Doesn't mention any of the other people who were in that small section of one show. Doesn't address the actual facts I gave with regard to the cast of interviewees. You can criticise the weighting given to alternative viewpoints but comparison with holocaust denial is emotionally loaded and unhelpful - the body of evidence available for the existence of the holocaust is in no way comparable to even the best known stories in my show, the consequence of coming to an erroneus interpretation of one of our stories is also not comparable. And there is also the minor fact that many of our stories ARE genuine mysteries and many others ARE given a full scientific explantion.
I understand if you don't want to take my word for it, or to watch all 15 episodes (The episode carpetsmoker linked to is the pilot, and perhaps the least representative, but take it as you will), but perhaps you could spare the minutes to read this NY times review...The only thing missing is the 'unexplained'
The reviewer's final summary of the opening epside of Series 1 'No extraterrestrials here, just an assortment of interesting anecdotes'. Not my favourite review, or one guaranteed to boost my ratings, but it is the view of someone watching the show without any pre-conceived agenda. And if you think he's a sympathiser, please note the harsh treatment he gives to other UFO shows in the same review - 'an embarrassing series... ...Using hokey re-enactments and a smattering of commentary by supposed experts' - 'The filmmaking theory seems to be that if you discombobulate viewers with random shifts of the camera perhaps they won’t notice that your U.F.O. show contains no hard evidence of U.F.O.’s.'
I realise this is not Wikipedia and you can indulge in the SPOV, but Rational Wiki is supposed to be rational isn't it? Aren't rational people supposed to look at the evidence (Which, in this case, is the shows themselves) before rushing to judgement? — Unsigned, by: Tvproducer / talk / contribs 11:57, 16 October 2015‎
Drink! Leuders (talk) 16:10, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
I thought this was supposed to be RATIONALWiki ... To be clear, I was never under the apprehension that my 14 minutes was somehow a comprehensive review of the entire show, I just wanted to make sure that this article is roughly in the right ballpark and not somehow completely wrong... Carpetsmoker (talk) 17:18, 16 October 2015 (UTC)
It's not my impression that Ymir was positing equivalence between holocaust denial and any perceived misgivings with the show. They were merely pointing out that cranks and those inclined to actually follow evidence and not "leap to vast conclusions" from not even "half-vast data" do not carry equal weight. Maybe I'm wrong, but the rest of tvproducer's argument seems to be a handwave? Scherben (talk) 23:45, 16 October 2015 (UTC)

Definitely dubious standards in programme[edit]

Watched an episodes of this. Subject was mis-landing of Soyuz 23 in a lake and recovery of capsule illustrated with some film as narration talks about trying to pull it from water with helicopter. My son says, 'i think that helicopter is a Sikorsky' so I look carefully and it is a Sikorsky Choctaw. The film then shows a capsule low in water. Said capsule is more conical than a ball. At which point I realize the film is actually of Gus Grissom's Mercury Liberty 7 capsule. It seemed the video from the US Mercury project had been electronically treated to blur it and colour it red to pad out what little soviet film the programme actually had. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

Wow, that's low. Good find. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 00:14, 11 January 2017 (UTC)


... there is a file of 'things we NASA scientists and technology-specialists have to resolve' - most of which are totally ordinary/will have reasonable explanations (along with 'collection of weird things we get asked' and 'weird theories proposed bingo list'). Anna Livia (talk) 16:31, 25 September 2017 (UTC)

Moon landing. Stanley Kubrick has already admitted to faking the[edit]

nasa never went to the moon. The Van Allen Belts prevent man from leaving the confines of planet earth. You look so stupid. — Unsigned, by: / talk