Extraordinary claims. Ordinary investigations.

Walson’s World


In short: guy named John Lenard Walson says he invented a new gadget capable of extending his amateur telescope resolution. Walson then says he could film not only the International Space Station (ISS), but that he discovered that many “stars” in the sky are in fact HUGE structured objects. Walson then asks, in a very thrilling manner to some, “Mystery Space Machines Above. Black Ops, Star Wars Or ET? Or All Of The Above?

This has been going for over a month now, as Walson keeps uploading new videos, images and heightening the tension. But he never gets to the smoking gun. Probably because his name is not Walson, and everything is just-another-hoax.

Let us start from the trivia. “Walson” intended to sell his footage, involved himself with fellow mystery sellers, but they ended up fighting. You can check some of the public name-calling here. Millions of dollars, Spielberg and such are things involved. But that’s not all.

Less trivial is the fact that “Walson” seems to have been presenting videos from other people as if they were shot by him. Like an “orb” or even the much debated military helicopters that were harassing him at home. Those were in fact originally published on the Internet some years ago, by one Abby (”Bambi”) Parker. You can check more about UFO video piracy here.

Or not. Apparently, Abby Parker is in fact Walson himself. Or not. Walson is Parker’s husband. Or not. Walson has a very sick wife, who wasn’t Parker. Or not.

There’s much confusion and embarrassing excuses given, but this is essentially trivial. Even if the helicopters videos are indeed real, filmed by whomever claims to be harassed, they would be no mystery. At least according to the definitely not-debunkers folks at the AboveTopSecret forum.

Springer, from ATS, claims that a license plate of a van in the video could be traced back to a company that is located near a military airbase. That, along with the refusal to disclose any actual details of their methods, led to the expulsion of one of Walson’s spokespersons (or Walson himself, who knows). The whole case is now tagged as a HOAX on ATS.

Not happy with so many embarrassing moments, Walson actually went to the length of recording an interview with an astronomer. Only thing is that he didn’t tell the astronomer he was being filmed, and then edited the interview to make it look like it supported his claims. The astronomer was not very happy about that.

But anyway. All these things are trivial. The fact they are evidence that “Walson” is a liar, crank and similar adjectives shouldn’t be relevant if he did in fact create something capable of doing what he claims. Unfortunately, he didn’t.

Walson claims he uses an eight inch Meade telescope to shoot his videos. He says the giant machines are “fixed” in the sky. That he can record them in plain daylight, at noon. Or that he can record sounds from the machines in space. If this last claim didn’t ring any skeptical bells for you, watch more Alien movies, because in space nobody can hear you scream. In fact all of the previous claims are more or less impossible.

Photographing the ISS and satellites is very possible, though. And this may be the clearest evidence of Walson’s hoax. Read this article on the NYT about amateur enthusiasts who actually track and image orbiting objects. And then, check the video below:

Amazing shots of the ISS by Mike Tyrrell and Phil Masding, see more on Tyrell’s website.

Now, compare it with what Walson claims is the ISS:

Walson’s revolutionary, status-quo shattering, new super-secret invention actually produces worse images. Which means that if there were “giant machines” on space, you would expect amateur, noted, conventional astronomers to spot them much earlier.

And Walson’s images are not only worse. That ISN’T the ISS at all. Which leads us to the crucible question of how he creates his videos.

There are many possibilities, but someone already managed to reproduce very similar images. Without aiming above. In fact, “waveguide3” suggests he recreated the videos using models made with aluminum foil, shot at a distance and distorted with mirrors and glasses. And he actually shows: check his three videos, titled “S.L.O.W.”

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Posted in People,UFOs | 15 comments

15 Comments so far

  1. Franco February 12th, 2008 3:57 am

    This whole issue makes me sick … sounds from space? Giant ships in fixed orbit? C’mon, this guy thinks everyone’s a moron like him.

    Nice effort on your english site. Sucesso.

  2. mike February 12th, 2008 9:03 am

    Bravo that’s just great, I was looking for an article like this for a while now. This guy sounded like a hoax from the very beginnning. Thanks for putting it all together in one post.

  3. Umbriel February 12th, 2008 3:23 pm

    I didn’t take the “sounds from space” as being literally audible, but rather radio signals that he was picking up with his “satellite dish receiver” — akin to the “sounds” of Jupiter and other planets received by NASA probes and widely available on the Web.

    That said, I can’t conceive of how such a large number of objects in low orbit could go unnoticed by the wider skywatching community. I guess that’s where the claim that they’re “fixed” in the sky comes in, though a fleet of craft that can remain geostationary while in low orbit veers decisively out of the realm of simple conspiracy and into speculative science fiction.

  4. Anonymous February 12th, 2008 4:54 pm

    You read my mind. Your site is an inspiration.
    I’ve seen something strange once, and people
    like this make a joke of the whole scientific
    side to the phenomenon. THANK YOU!!!

  5. Joseph Capp February 12th, 2008 7:09 pm

    There was absoultly no way to judge what those images were. I don’t know the guy but if you want to claim this is happening have some impartial investagation. The idea that he was copywriting everything gave me pause. This is why we need more non-commerical donations of these videos for free examination otherwise it is just another story out there and the person becomes suspect.
    Joe Capp
    UFO Media Matters
    Non-Commercial Blog

  6. Pete February 13th, 2008 10:46 am

    What alerted me at the beginning of this hoax was the total lack of orbital data…..

  7. Cogitator X February 14th, 2008 6:51 am

    The images shown resemble the space station destroyed by V’ger in the beginning of Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

  8. Phoenix |-P-| February 16th, 2008 5:29 pm

    The bottom pair look exactly like chess Pawns.

    He probably spray painted them silver and then played with lights and lenses.

    If he claims they are geostationary,
    has he posted the locations?

  9. Rusty February 17th, 2008 2:41 am

    If the objects WERE in geostationary orbits, he wouldn’t have to keep moving his telescope to keep them in frame! But, what can you expect from a Jew-hating fraud like Jeff Rense?

  10. Damn Data February 21st, 2008 3:20 pm

    VALIS glimpsed?…

    Rense has a long article on the discoveries of John Lenard Walson who has developed a way of boosting the picture quality on ordinary telescopes and he has found some odd things in Earth orbit.

    He also claims to have recorded them:

    The first …

  11. futsnfup April 11th, 2008 7:26 pm

    I am in no way defending the claims of John Walson but, man, what a crap-lousy ‘ordinary investigation.’
    You state, “Less trivial is the fact that “Walson” seems to have been presenting videos from other people as if they were shot by him.” You then go on to investigate (and I use that term lightly) this ‘less trivial’ matter by stating that maybe Walson is the same person as Abby Parker, or maybe they are married. Or maybe none of the above. That clears that matter up!
    Additionally, because someone can produce images with a similar appearance by a different method does not mean the original images were hoaxed. I could produce images similar in appearance to many Hubble images in my living room. Coupled with the fact that no one else can verify the Hubble images with another imaging system, this obviously leads to the conclusion that Hubble’s images are fake. That’s some awfully weak logic.
    Doesn’t look like much of an investigation to me…

    In reply to Rusty:”If the objects WERE in geostationary orbits, he wouldn’t have to keep moving his telescope to keep them in frame!”
    Essentially true if the objects were geostationary, but not if the objects are geosynchronous. These are two distinctly different categories of orbit. Geosynchronous satellites do not remain in a stationary positiion relative to the earth, they produce a figure eight-like ground track.

  12. Mori April 13th, 2008 3:48 pm

    “futsnfup”, regarding the relationship between “Walson” and Abby Parker, the items I mentioned weren’t my “investigation”, I was just reproducing the lame explanations that Walson’s supporters gave about it. It’s “Walson” himself that should have cleared things himself on this matter. He didn’t.

    Fact is, he showed images that were originally publicized by one “Abby Parker” as being his. There’s no clear explanation for what this means. And this is just one more of the important things that Walson ignores or plainly refuses to explain.

    You do have a point on the fact that a reproduction of an image doesn’t prove that the original image was produced in the same way. It does prove that it’s possible, though, and in this case, that it’s apparently trivial.

    You did ignore the crux of the matter of this “crap-lousy investigation”. Which is the fact that amateur astronomers are able to capture the ISS in much greater detail than Walson, and yet are not able to see anything that he claims to see, by an undisclosed method, which was proved, can be reproduced by a simple hoax.

    None of this is “absolute” proof that Walson is a hoax, that’s granted. But not only can we say that it would be foolish to believe his claims as they are presented at the moment, but that even serious consideration of them leads to more and more doubts.

  13. Remembering Forgetomori ’2008 | forgetomori December 31st, 2008 7:46 pm

    […] Our pick: a debunking on Lenard Walson’s “mystery space machines”. […]

  14. natly January 21st, 2010 10:04 pm

    maybe he is affraid of cia

  15. Matt December 13th, 2012 11:59 pm

    Great comedy.
    I’m an astronomer.

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