Over the weekend, a YouTuber named D. Marble flew from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Seattle, Washington, with a carpenter’s level to make a bold scientific statement: The Earth is flat. Strangely, D. Marble isn’t the only person to recently grab headlines for doubting one of the core ideas of modern science. Back in February, Cleveland Cavaliers star Kyrie Irving came out as a flat-earther, as did rapper B.o.B. So why in the world is this ridiculous conspiracy theory gaining steam?
The flat Earth movement may be growing in popularity due to the countless videos about the conspiracy popping up on YouTube. In fact, Google searches for the term “flat Earth” have gone up 800 percent since 2014.
The basic theory states that Earth is flat like a disk, and the sun orbits around the its outer ring; in the center of the flat Earth is the Arctic Ocean, which remains ice cold because it’s farthest from the sun’s orbit.
Subscribers to the theory also believe the Earth is encased by a dome and that stars are actually just holes poked into its roof. Gravity is caused by the Earth slowly accelerating upward, so when we drop something, the planet rises up to meet it.
Many flat-earthers defend their beliefs by claiming that scientists, politicians, and religious leaders have perpetrated the “myth” of the round Earth for centuries to justify their own agendas.
To help squelch the growing flat Earth movement, Life Noggin created a video that explains why we can be sure that the Earth is, indeed, round.