Mars as big as the Moon, redux, redux.

According to an article on SpaceWeather today:

Just when you thought it was safe to read your email, a new Mars Hoax is spreading. The widely circulated message claims "the Red Planet is about to be spectacular. On August 27th, Mars will look as large as the full Moon." Fact: On August 27, 2006, Mars will be on the other side of the solar system, 385 million km from Earth and very dim.
Please, no, not again!

Although, that said, I do wish people would stop calling it a "hoax". It's not really a hoax, it's out-of-date, it over-hypes (and in some versions misrepresents) an event that did actually happen, it's stupid and it misinforms people — but I can't help but think that it doesn't make sense to call it a hoax.

Unless, that is, someone has evidence that whoever sent it out first this time actually intended to deceive people?

Thanks to Tim for the heads-up about the story on SpaceWeather.

File Under: Mars, SpaceWeather.


Ian Musgrave said...

Yeah, I've got people asking me about that too. The "Hoax" bit is where it leads people to believe Mars will be as big as the Moon to the unaided eye.

Dave Pearson said...

And even then the "as big as the Moon" bit isn't actually wrong as such, just often taken out of context of the original email.