Mainstream media coverage of UFOs has halved since the end of the Cold War

Mainstream Media Coverage of UFOs has halved

A recent study from a Penn State historian has found that mainstream media coverage of UFOs has greatly declined in the last three decades.

The study, by associate professor of modern history Greg Eghigian, and published in Public Understanding of Science, used a sample of 25 newspapers. It found that the number of headlines mentioning UFOs or flying saucers since the 1990’s has fallen to less than 20 headlines annually. Prior to the the post-Cold War era, there were usually more than 40 headlines about UFO phenomena per year.

The start of the modern flying saucer era coincides almost exactly with start the Cold War era, beginning in 1947 when aviator Kenneth Arnold spotted silver flying discs in the Cascade Mountains of Washington State. Eghigian now attributes the recent decline in media coverage of UFOs to the end of the Cold War.

Eghigian believes that further study into the work of Ufologists could give a snapshot of Cold War attitudes, as well as current insights into how science communication may be tied to denialism and conspiracy theory movements.

 

Read the press release from Penn State here: Mutual mistrust may have added a few X-files to the UFO era | Penn State University