Science & Tech

A Flat Earther was shown the ‘edge of the planet’ to mock conspiracies

A Flat Earther was shown the ‘edge of the planet’ to mock conspiracies
Flat Earth believer proves Earth is round in Netflix documentary ‘Behind the …

Comedian Dom Joly and star of Trigger Happy TV has had numerous run ins with conspiracy theorists, and now he's sharing what happened when he took a flat Earther to the 'edge of the Earth'.

For his latest book, The Conspiracy Tourist, Joly went looking for people who believe in conspiracy theories. Speaking to Unilad,he said: "I think it was mainly to do with lockdown... People went a bit crazy, and went down algorithm rabbit holes, and started having some really weird ideas.

"And I realised that conspiracies used to be fun. They used to be funny. Like, is Elvis alive and working in a chip shop? And now, it seemed that conspiracies were becoming a bit more dangerous."

It's likely you've encountered a couple of conspiracy theorists online, which can make it easy to dismiss them, so Joly wanted to meet the people behind these theories to see if they "really believed" what they were saying online, or if they were "just doing it for clicks".

Joly said one of the "weirdest" conspiracies he found during his research was the flat Earth theory.

Joly said he struggled to understand why people "wouldn't agree" that the Earth is round, because you can see the curvature of the Earth if you're up high enough.

According to Flat Earthers, one of the 'corners' of the Earth is located in Newfoundland, on Fogo Island.

Joly explained: "I took one of them on a road trip to the 'edge of the Earth'. And we looked off this cliff, and there was no drop [into nothingness]."

However, the conspiracy theorist was unhappy with what Joly was showing him, making Joly get into a fishing boat to hunt for the edge of the Earth.

When they inevitably still failed to find the edge of the Earth, the flat Earther then accused the fisherman of "going round in circles". And even claiming that Joly and the fisherman were being paid by Bill Gates to do so.

Like other conspiracy theorists, the flat Earther seemed to always have a reason for why their theories didn't pan out.

Speaking on his experience, Joly said it "didn't really bother" him he's "not scornful of conspiracists".

During his research, Joly had created an alternative Instagram account where he showed in interest in some of the biggest conspiracy-peddlers.

"I can see why it's so easy to start to believe that stuff, because that is your reality," he said. "And my reality on my [regular] Instagram page must look as odd to them as theirs does to mine. And I don't think people realise that yet. We live in parallel universes."

He added: "I think conspiracy theories happen often in times of economic and social unrest... because I think what happens is, as humans, we really are very logical people, we like order," Joly said, reflecting on his time spent learning about conspiracy theories.

"And when stuff is chaotic, and big things happen, like 9/11, or Covid, and your life gets thrown in the air, we really don't like it. We try and find patterns. And conspiracy theories give you patterns. They give you reasons for why things have happened."

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