There is currently [written in '96] a claim on a certain web site that I "covered up information" on the first crop circle of 1996.
THIS IS A LIE.
The first formation of 1996 was in oil seed rape at Coton, near Girton, on the outskirts of Cambridge, discovered on 12th. May. As the then editor of "The Circular", I published Michael Newark's report on this formation in the issue being put together at the time, which went off to the printer very shortly thereafter.
On this same web site is an account, ostensibly by one of the self-confessed hoaxers, of how this formation was made, and why: "According to one of our friends, the first circles of the year are never pronounced as hoaxes. So we tried our goddam best to change that..."
Below a sub-heading, "Daylight Analysis", is the preposterous claim, "Only Circular Editor John Sayer knows why, after we left a message with him at 2pm on 11th May 1996, it was not made public for another week. We suspect this could have been due to secret government testing, involving Michael Newark's expert dowsing skills to make this 'genuine as fuck' formation safe before entering..."
I do not know who is responsible for this libel, but I challenge that person to explain where and how this alleged message was left with me. There were four possible phone numbers I could have been contacted on (at three possible addresses) on 11th. May 1996. I did not receive any phone call personally, as is acknowledged by the writer in referring to leaving a message. Nor did I receive anything by post (I did not have e-mail or a fax at that time).
It may very well be the case that someone did try to contact me, in which case they failed - but I am mighty curious as to why there was no follow-up, why nothing was said at the time, and why this has been published on the Internet at this late date. To the person responsible I say this: get in touch with me - openly and honestly - and explain yourself. You can also tell me where you left your message, and I will tell you where I was on 11th. May 1996 (which can be verified by witnesses, of course). Alternatively, you can put your money where your mouth is and post a message on 'alt.paranormal.crop-circles' - since you have publicly villified me, perhaps you can summon up the courage to publicly debate this matter.
I don't mind a bit of a laugh, or even ridicule when it's deserved, but I don't accept being lied about.
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