Expert Deception

OK, so some may ask how can we question world-renowned experts. Let us look at only a few instances where we simply switched on our deception detectors. Something any person can and should do.

See the slide below. It is Slide 64 (Part 1) of Zeelenberg’s presentation (shown in court). In order to show us that the bottom “line” is “not straight but curved” Zeelenberg simply draws a line under a part of the line.

Referring to this slide, on the very next slide he writes: “Bottom line clearly curved – consistent with lines from a glass” (he does the same on Slide 59, with the caption “Curvature”). Note that in both instances part of the left of the line is obscured and/or not visible.

Now let us look at the whole line, and do the same, but we put the coloured line a bit more on the line, getting a better representation of the line:

You will see that although the line is not straight like an arrow, it certainly cannot be considered as being curved. Towards the right end of the line you will see a slight deviation below the line, but that part’s outline has a tendency back upwards, and doesn’t follow a trajectory of a curve downwards. Please remember, if you look at our Lines Report, you will note that we also determined with regression analysis, a scientific process, that this line is not a curve of any kind.

This issue is important. Firstly, it sheds light on the methods Zeelenberg entertain to show “facts”. He could not even be bothered to show the whole line. In one instance, for example, the sticker blocks the line. Secondly, Zeelenberg clearly implies that this line should be curved. If you take lifts from a conical drinking glass, you will note that the bottom line will indeed be curved. This is inevitable. Thus, if this line is not curved, then it follows that it was not lifted from a conical drinking glass. It can also not be from a cylindrical glass (which would leave straight lines), because the top line is curved (although it is not the right type of curve for a conical tumbler).

Although it is not quite clear exactly what Zeelenberg wanted to show us, because Swartz never spoke about a landscape lift, it is inexcusable that out-of-scale overlays were done. And not once. On Slides 81-86 (Part 1) Zeelenberg clearly enlarged Folien 1 out of proportion to a standard DVD cover. Whether it would have had an influence on the result or not, when an overlay is done, it is imperative that respective scales are always maintained. When it is not absolutely crucial and an overlay simply needs to convey a basic visual idea, a millimetre to this side or that side may be excused. It is not always possible to get exact scales (e.g. if sizes of images are not known). But in this case there is a massive and an inexcusable difference in the sizes Zeelenberg shows, and the actual size. The sizes of both Folien 1 and a DVD cover were known. See below (Slide 83 as example).

The size of a DVD cover is 19 cm x 13.5 cm. The size of Folien 1 is about 12.6 cm x 9.2 cm. The coloured square (which we added) represents the actual size that Folien 1 is supposed to be in relation to the DVD cover. Thus, Zeelenberg enlarged Folien 1 out of proportion to the DVD cover. He blew the size of Folien 1 up while the size of the DVD cover remained the same. This is bad scientific method, and it misleads.

Although we closely look at Wertheim’s experiment here, below is another example of deception. Why did Wertheim crop Folien 1 to such an extent? Was it to hide the straightening out of the top line, and thereby hiding dissimilarities in the lines? Making Folien 1’s curve look more like his own test lift’s curve. (A good 3 cms of Folien 1 were cropped off by Wertheim.)

Below is an old tactic to visually deceive. By drawing similar bold and colourful circles around the respective features in the images you want to compare, you distract the eye from noticing finer (and the actual) detail, and therefore the images look more the same than they would without the circles.