About Me

Mick West
Mick West

My name is Mick West. I’m a science writer and debunker. I used to be a video games programmer. My primary focus at the moment is on investigating and explaining conspiracy theories such as Chemtrails, 9/11, False Flags. I also cover more esoteric topics such as UFO’s, pseudoscience, Flat Earth, photo analysis, and quackery.

Email: mick@mickwest.com. Phone: (530) 903-5359

My Book:

I’m writing a book with working title Escaping the Rabbit Hole, to be published by Skyhorse Publishing in September 2018. Escaping the Rabbit Hole examines the full spectrum of conspiracy theories from 9/11 to Flat Earth, and looks at how people get into them, how they get drawn down the rabbit hole, how they get out, and how you can help.

My Web Sites:

  • Metabunk.org – My primary site where I post and discuss various inverstigations. A polite forum of and about debunking. Metabunk get 10,000 visitors a day and has an active discussion community.
  • ContrailScience.com – About contrails and the “chemtrail” conspiracy theory
  • CowboyProgramming.com,– Where I write about games programming, and post some of the experimental code I have written.

My Social Media

 

TV Appearances

 

CBS Evening News, November 2010

I helped explain a “mystery missile launch” off the coast of Los Angeles. My related page on Contrail Science got over a million views.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVqk5rc_eOQ

 

CNN, November 2010

Explaining the “mystery missile” and another contrail UFO

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsualTDjeVo,

 

America’s Most Secret Structures, Discovery Channel, 2014

I was profiled as a “Contrail Expert”, and explained the science of Contrail formation relating to the “Chemtrails” conspiracy theory.

https://vimeo.com/166268186

 

Joe Rogan Questions Everything, SyFy, 2013

I appeared in two segments on this show hosted by Joe Rogan. In one segment I discussed the “Chemtrails” theory, and in the other I helped Joe debunk a machine that was supposed to affect clouds by simulating the HAARP research radio.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWo10JE0Fb4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWHgrY-TRrg

Documentaries

 

Overcast, Dedal Films, 2016

Several minutes of me explaining the “chemtrail” theory in an award winning documentary.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q8JoR7u1rDE

 

Radio

 

KPCC, Nov 2010

Interview regarding the Mystery Missile

http://www.scpr.org/news/2010/11/11/20923/mystery-solved-mystery-missile-just-jet/

 

Pat Walsh KFBK, 2015

35 minute segment discussing the “Chemtrails” theory.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Vo0LaEVu1c

 

Radio New Zealand, 2016

“Mick West is a science writer and is dedicated to the art of debunking wild theories that circulate online and helping other people do the same, with his website, Metabunk.

http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/afternoons/audio/201817013/the-man-who-debunks-conspiracy-theories

 

Podcasts

Joe Rogan Experience #959, May 2017

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvitm0bMHyA

A two hour podcast discussing the “Flat Earth” conspiracy theory. This was very popular, having over half a million views on YouTube alone. Several people made detailed response videos.

 

Joe Rogan Experience #388, Sept 2013

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pongryYlH3Q

A three hour podcast where I discuss chemtrails and all kinds of conspiracy theories with Joe Rogan and guest Bryan Callen

 

The Mad Scientist Podcast, 2017

” a sit down interview with Mick West, founder of Metabunk.org, Contrailscience.com, and overall debunker extraordinaire. “

https://audioboom.com/posts/5929191-episode-17-an-interview-with-mick-west

 

Critical Wit, 2011

“Mick West is a pilot and creator of the website, ContrailScience.com. We talk about the history and science of contrails; how they are formed, how they take on a variety of shapes, and why they can last for short or long durations. And we'll also discuss Mick's criticsm of the chemtrail conspiracy. We also discuss another website he's developed recently on ‘how to debunk' called Metabunk.org.”

http://www.criticalwitpodcast.com/podcast/critical-wit-12%E2%80%93-contrail-sciencechemtrail-pseudoscience/

 

Podcast UFO, (UK) 2017

“Our First Guest: Mick West of Metabunk to talk about the Chilean UFO”

http://podcastufo.com/show-notes/tonights-mick-west-and-micah-hanks/

 

Polly and Grant (Australia), 2016

“We talk to Mick West for Anti-Conspiracy “

http://player.fm/series/polly-and-grant-podcast/polly-grant-podcast-21-november-2016

 

Other Interviews

CSICOP: “From Chemtrails to CSICon: An Interview with Mick West.”, 2017

An interview regarding my presentation of the “Expert Elicitation” paper.

http://www.csicop.org/specialarticles/show/from_chemtrails_to_csicon_an_interview_with_mick_west

Articles and Publications

 

Quantifying expert consensus against the existence of a secret, large-scale atmospheric spraying program, Environmental Research Letters, Volume 11, Number 8, 2016

A peer reviewed study I co-authored on expert opinions of the evidence put forward supporting the “chemtrails” conspiracy theory. This was the most popular article in the history of Environmental Research Letters and got a top 5% Altmetric score. There was extensive media coverage of this paper, and I presented it at CSICon 2016.

http://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/11/8/084011

https://iop.altmetric.com/details/10396896/news

 

Curated Crowdsourcing in UFO Investigations, Skeptical Briefs Volume 27.1, 2017

A detailed article on how I solved a UFO case that baffled the Chilean Navy for two years.

http://www.csicop.org/sb/show/curated_crowdsourcing_in_ufo_investigations

 

Other Media Mentions (incomplete list)

 

Daily Express, UK, 2017

 

Mick West, administrator of Metabunk.org, a website which investigates and exposes hoax UFO and alien sightings, concluded the alleged lizard was simply a dust removal device at the head of the rover.

http://www.express.co.uk/news/weird/791700/Mars-NASA-Curiosity-Rover-lizard-debunked-Metabunk-org

 

Similar videos have also been examined by Mick West of the metabunk.org website.”

http://www.express.co.uk/news/weird/802865/Mystery-planet-sun-Nibiru-Cleveland-Texas-YouTube

 

But, now Mick West, an administrator for the Metabunk.org website, based in Sacramento, California, claims to have solved the case.”

http://www.express.co.uk/news/weird/752804/UFO-Chilean-Navy-identified-CEFAA

 

Daily Mail, UK, 2017

“The amazing rainbow contrails are a result of these ice crystals, according to Contrail Science.”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4405736/Stunning-photos-capture-rare-rainbow-contrails.html

 

Huffington Post, 2014-2017

 

“Mick West of Metabunk.org, a site devoted to investigating and debunking "mysteries" of this sort, maintains it's boat wake, “

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/21/loch-ness-monster-apple-maps_n_5185690.html

 

” Mick West, a retired video game programmer who now runs Metabunk.org, an online site, "dedicated to the art and pastime of honest, polite, scientific investigating and debunking.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/07/01/loch-ness-ufo-photo-debunked_n_7675456.html

 

” While it initially appeared the FBI had just released the photos, conspiracy-debunking website Metabunk uncovered evidence indicating they were released to the public as early as 2011, “

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/fbi-new-911-photos_us_58de752ae4b0ba359594701f

 

The Guardian, UK, 2017

“I play Tammi and Rob a YouTube video by Mick West, who runs the conspiracy theory-debunking blog Metabunk. Going through 70 years of books on the science of clouds, West explains why …”

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/may/22/california-conspiracy-theorist-farmers-chemtrails

 

NBC News, 2015

“Metabunk.org’s Mick West says it looks like the weird effect that’s created when someone walks through your line of sight while you’re taking an iPhone panorama. On his website, he demonstrates

http://www.nbcnews.com/science/weird-science/ghost-busted-hampton-court-iphone-glitch-suspected-n313751

 

Vice.com, 2014, 2015

“In the US, Mick West runs the website metabunk.org, pulling in 10,000 unique visitors a day. He reckons the Charlie Hebdo rumors were predictable.”

https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/the-psychology-and-economy-of-conspiracy-theories-890

 

“Mick West—editor of anti-conspiracy theory website Metabunk, which published an article explaining why Chris’s video was a hoax—explained the history of the chemtrails theory to me. …”

https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/i-tricked-chemtrail-conspiracy-theorists-947

 

Gazette Review, 2017

“the skeptical website Metabunk claimed to have been contacted by one of the boys in the picture”

http://gazettereview.com/2017/01/top-10-mysterious-photographs/

 

Dive Photo Guide

“Over on the de-bunking website, Metabunk.com, a bunch of very smart people have gotten together to discuss why this technology is just not in our near future.”

http://www.divephotoguide.com/underwater-photography-scuba-ocean-news/triton-artificial-gills-rebreather-may-scam/

 

News.com.au, 2015

As the well-informed sceptics of metabunk.org point out, if you fiddle with the zoom 5feature a little, the dots will suddenly materialise.”

http://www.news.com.au/technology/science/has-a-careful-look-at-google-earth-really-exposed-a-secret-base-hidden-inside-a-crater-on-the-surface-of-our-moon/news-story/af598e97042d0f100c0b7bf115d3d582

 

Inquisitr, 2016

“But as the online fact-checker Metabunk noted, although Trump gave a speech in Richmond, Henrico County, on October 14, 2016, he did not mention 9/11 during the speech. “

http://www.inquisitr.com/3711339/donald-trump-vows-to-reopen-911-investigation-fake-news-report-sparks-excitement-among-members-of-the-truth-movement/

 

Christian Science Monitor, 2015

“But the website metabunk.org says the shadows in the first video are exactly as they should be and demonstrates why the shadows converge. “

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Global-News/2015/0124/ISIS-video-Is-this-Japanese-beheading-real-or-fake-video

 

Slate, David Weigel, 2014

“Metabunk has done a number on this, and to be fair, our Colorado candidate doesn’t seem to have bought into the exciting sequel to the Sandy Hook conspiracy.”

http://www.slate.com/blogs/weigel/2014/09/12/finally_a_sandy_hook_truther_you_can_vote_for_if_you_live_in_colorado.html

 

Cafemom, 2014

“I recently found Metabunk, a website devoted to debunking various conspiracy theories, misunderstood natural phenomena, and flat-out weird beliefs. “

http://thestir.cafemom.com/bizarre_news/174292/7_spinetingling_true_stories_scarier

 

Daily Star, UK, 2014

“Sci-fi expert Mick West, of website Metabunk.org, said: “There is not a lot in the original video that can be pointed to as an automatic fake.”

http://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/370446/The-truth-is-out-there-Incredible-video-shows-UFO-in-the-sky

 

International Business Times, 2013

“At Metabunk.org, a user named Mick set up his own experiment to show that an object can be moved around by vibration. “

http://www.ibtimes.com/spinning-egyptian-statue-physics-behind-object-walking-museums-1320983

 

La Presse, Canada, 2015

“The appearance of “paranoid” theories of this nature does not surprise Mick West, a programmer based in California who has run a blog for several years, Metabunk, trying to thwart this type of speech.”

http://www.lapresse.ca/international/dossiers/attentats-a-paris/201501/09/01-4833936-attentats-les-theories-du-complot-se-multiplient.php

 

Discover Magazine, 2014

“Mick West, who runs the debunking website Metabunk.org, also convincingly argues that the object is a digital byproduct.

"The answer is that Google stores multiple resolution image tiles, and uses a different set of tiles depend on how much you are zoomed in," West explained.”

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2014/01/30/mysterious-moon-base-discovered-not-so-fast/#.WTCzXxPyvmE

 

Scientific American, 2010

“The airplane explanation was put forth rather quickly by Contrail Science, which demonstrated how an airplane flying horizontally toward a viewer can, from certain perspectives, mimic the appearance of a rocket flying vertically into the sky. “

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/mystery-missile/

None-Debunking

 

I’ve published several technical articles in Game Developer magazine where I was a contributing editor. Some are republished here:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/authors/32717/Mick_West.php

 

 

 

 

Game Development

  • My articles on Gamasutra. These are a mix of Game Developer Articles, and some articlesfrom Cowboy Programming
  • My gameography on Mobygames. All the games I worked on. This was mostly programming and design up to Tony Hawk’s Underground. Then consulting on some games. The last programming I did there was the AI for World Series of Poker back in 2005.

Historical Writing

You can email me at: mick@mickwest.com

 

TonyHawksProSkaterPlayStation1
A game I helped make.