Monday, September 28, 2009

From The Anomalist

From today's Anomalist:

The Curious Case of the Snake with Foot Forgetomori. A snake with a foot is found in China. Snakes with limbs are not unheard of, since their ancestor did have limbs, but there's something about this particular claw that just doesn't looks right. Kentaro Mori resolves the mystery. He should tackle that Irish lake monster video, the story of which finally made the mainstream press with Mysterious shape that looks a loch like Nessie. Cryptozoologists are beginning to have doubts about it, however. Glen Vaudrey writes that one item in the video might be "a large water bird, which appears to be taking off."

7 comments:

Andrew D. Gable said...

If I recall correctly, though (having read Jon's posts about this several days ago when they first came out) didn't Max Blake identify one of them as a water bird - but the mysterious bit WASN'T that one? I thought the mysterious entity was a pale-colored thing they saw beneath the waters.

Nick Redfern said...

Andrew:

Yes, I think there is going to be quite a bit of analysis done to determine what each individual bit of footage shows etc.

cryptidsrus said...

I do agree that most of it seems to be Birds (Cormorants?) taking off. But I agree with Gable---THAT piece of footage needs to be looked into.

I'm not ready to dismiss this one just yet---even if it is by Shiels.

The guy drops out of sight for years just to do a little bit of "Irish blarney" again? Don't quite think so, IMO.

That's me, of course.

Let's have a more thorough examination of the footage--- that's all I'm saying.

jgm said...

I'm sorry... Jon Downes added a bit to the narration describing this footage as the most important paranormal footage to ever be obtained in the UK, etc. Meanwhile, there's much on there that has a prosaic explanation, if Mr. Downes had bothered to review the tape before sharing his earth-shattering discovery with the world. There's no clear evidence of anything unusual, and a water fowl taking off was described as an underwater creature travelling at torpedo-like speeds by Mr. Downes in the narration. That's major egg-on-face. Add to this that the "rising star" Max Blake's videography was not exactly stellar, no one thought to actually get closer to the water, etc. and if I were Mr. Downes I'd be rather emabarrassed right now.

They spent the day with Shiels, a master storyteller and myth-weaver. Shiels then brings these eccentric and suggestable types to a particular spot and a particular distance, has them film, and their imaginations do the rest. My hat's off to Shiels - he still has it. He's even gotten better with age - he doesn't have to fake a dang thing or even touch the camera in order to fool people. :-)

Neil A said...

I think to connect Shiels to the footage is absurd. Secondly, Jon never claimed he'd filmed a monster, however if he had filmed a leviathan of the deep, he still would've received the same ridicule from the so-called 'crypto community'. I think it's quite valid for someone to film something which at first they took to be unusual, especially when you consider just how many people across the globe claim to see things but never have a camera handy. I don't think You Tube is the best outlet for video's anymore, especially as they seem to provoke disgraceful and personal comments from cowards who hide behind PC user names.
I think it's always worth filming something that seems unusual, and that's what Jon has done. It's from quite a distance away, and await further analysis.

I also think the obsession with the cormorant piece is taking away the possibility that Jon and comay have filmed something else previous to that.

Why should Jon be embarrassed ? He runs the Centre for Fortean Zoology who are the most active cryptozoological organisation in the world. He does more for cryptozoology than all of his detractors put together.

cryptidsrus said...

You make a very good point, Neil.

jgm said...

"I think to connect Shiels to the footage is absurd."

Other than that Shiels had the minds of the viewers for the day, took them to the spot and told them to film it, I'd agree. :-)

" Secondly, Jon never claimed he'd filmed a monster,"

Seriously? He goes on and on in the commentary about giant eels, he was seeing something he'd never seen before in his life, torpedo-like speed under the water, and the kicker about filming the most important paranormal footage to ever come out of the UK. I stopped watching at that point; perhaps he went on to practice his Oscar acceptance speech. ;-) His comments were the cryptozoological equivalent of people who claim UFO footage shows something unlike that of anything on earth, before it's found out to be a chinese lantern. Just as "not of this earth" is a euphemism for "alien", his words were euphemisms for lake monster, even if that phrase wasn't uttered.


" however if he had filmed a leviathan of the deep, he still would've received the same ridicule from the so-called 'crypto community'"

This is the defense of the CFZ for everything, apparently. This is the exact argument being used to defend against criticism for not taking an orang pedenk photo. It's not going to fly. There's no damned if you do, damned if you don't here. If he'd shot a leviathan of the deep, he would be praised (and probably get an Oscar too). Shooting a cormorant and acting like you'd shot a leviathan of the deep without even examining your footage closely before you upload it to YouTube will get you ribbing. Throwing a fit about it and bad-mouthing people critical of your footage on your website will get you ridicule. Jon Downes needs to learn to laugh at himself and let it go.

"I don't think You Tube is the best outlet for video's anymore, especially as they seem to provoke disgraceful and personal comments from cowards who hide behind PC user names."

You folks REALLY don't like anyone to burst your bubbles, do you? This must be why no one in this film's entourage moved closer to the water or even examined the footage later on. They didn't want to run the chance of it turning out to be something else.

"It's from quite a distance away, and await further analysis."

The analysis is in. It's a water fowl.

"Why should Jon be embarrassed?"

I think that's clear. He let Shiels work him up and direct him to a particular spot in a suggestable state. He mistook ordinary events for extraordinary ones while in that state, and then announced his discovery to the world before double-checking it himself or running it past any of his peers who might have caught his error.

" He runs the Centre for Fortean Zoology who are the most active cryptozoological organisation in the world."

Well, the CFZ should be embarrassed that they released a tape with excessive claims and hoopla only to have it turn out to be a mundane object that could have been detected had they viewed the relevant frames in full-res first. Do you think if NASA's calculations show an asteroid is going to hit the planet they don't double and triple check their calculations before making an announcement? If they did that, I'm sure the word "embarrassed" would come from their head scientists. They wouldn't use a bunch of insults on their blog instead.

"He does more for cryptozoology than all of his detractors put together."

What would that be, exactly? By the way, you don't believe that peer review is an absolutely essential function for a REAL science? To label anyone who disagrees with Jon Downes a "detractor" and start circling the wagons detracts from the reputation of the CFZ and makes cryptozoology look like anything but a science (as does Downes' initial unwarranted and unverified claims about his tape). Instead of damage control, CFZ affiliates have gotten angry, which just raises the profile of the incident and makes things worse.