Written by Keith Rowell
Last Updated: 31 January 2013

Here are some UFO audio and video resources to get you started.

A Word to the Wise About TV UFO Documentaries

Please note that what appears on TV on the History Channel, the Travel Channel, The Learning Channel, and more occasionally on other channels, is a mixed bag. Just as often as not, a UFO documentary shown on national television is produced by an independent producer who is essentially ignorant of the massive amount of work done in ufology in the last 60 years. They've pitched a UFO show to the History Channel and they've got the go-ahead so now they must produce the show. They hire some ignorant researchers who try to hastily educate themselves.

The producers and researchers think they have to show "both sides of the story" since they believe (being ignorant of the actual state of ufology) that the existence of a genuinely mysterious phenomenon has not been shown beyond a reasonable doubt to be true. Like nearly everyone in our society, they think that whether a genuine phenomenon exists is actually still a question. It is not. (MUFON and many other organizations have shown that this is not a question any longer. But, of course, we are still waiting to get a fair hearing in an open, honest public forum, which has not happened so far in the United States.)

So, the producers and researchers do their job and dutifully seek out all sides of the question and find that only two groups of people want to talk to them: the experts and the debunkers. The experts are ufologists. They are most often members of CUFOS, MUFON, FUFOR, BUFORA, etc., and they are not from the mainstream establishment colleges and universities because academics don't study UFOs. And academics certainly don't want to be associated with that nasty UFO stuff. (Occasionally, actual mainstream scientists or scholars will comment on the record in a UFO documentary, but it is fairly rare. Usually it is apparent to ufologists that the mainstream professor is not knowledgeable in the UFO literature. But, hey, it's UFOs so anyone's an expert, right?!  Wrong!  Most debunkers are actually less ignorant of the UFO facts than most academics.)

And so, the ignorant TV documentary producer ends up out of this process producing a confused work that just as much muddies the water as clears up anything. Occasionally, however, some producers don't "get in the way of the material" and just let the stories be told and the evidence be presented in a straightforward way without the sci-fi music, outré camera angles, or heavy-handed editing-to-make-a-point that usually happens.

Sometimes the debunking organizations have enough clout to actually guide the production of nationally shown UFO documentaries. The usual tactic here is to disingenuously imply at the beginning of the show that the producer really is trying to do his or her best to present the facts fairly, but somehow at the end of the show the "facts" just don't end up being real, "hard," scientific facts. And, usually, as the favorite explanation of the last few years has it, UFOs, abductions, crop circles, bigfoot, etc., are just the wish fulfillment of "fantasy prone" individuals. Sorry folks! It just ain't true. (The subtext goes something like this: Go back to sleep and don't look into this. Be a good listener and let us tell you what to think. Don't, for heaven's sake, investigate for yourself. You are too ignorant and uneducated to, anyway, and you'd just get confused.)