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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1997 > Oct > Oct 4

Re: One Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

From: Jean van Gemert <jeanvg@dds.nl>
Date: Sat, 4 Oct 1997 13:49:53 +0200 (MET DST)
Fwd Date: Sat, 04 Oct 1997 08:17:45 -0400
Subject: Re: One Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

>Date: Wed, 01 Oct 1997 10:05:19 -0400
>To: UFO UpDates - Toronto <updates@globalserve.net>
>From: Steven Kaeser <steve@konsulting.com>
>Subject: Re: One Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

>In view of the fairly intense messaging regarding
>Gulf Breeze and Walters I've broken my promise
>to myself and reformatted Maccabee's comments
>in the post below. I don't think I'll be doing
>it again.

 Errol's posting of Maccabee's comments didn't include
 Maccabee's end comments, which have been included in
 this version. Apologies to those who hate downloading
 stuff twice, but I think Bruce's additional remarks
 are important enough.


by Bruce Maccabee

Barbara's article is reproduced verbatim except for the notes at the
end which are references to copyright law.


From: c549597@showme.missouri.edu [Barbara Becker]
Date: Sat, 27 Sep 1997 13:36:17 -0500
Subject: 'The Gulf Breeze Paper'

Copyright 1997 Barbara Becker

For those not familiar with the Gulf Breeze, Florida (USA)
UFO story or one of its most controversial characters,
Edward  Walters, I will present a brief history.  A complete
account can be found in The Gulf  Breeze Sightings:  The
Most Astounding  Multiple Sightings of UFOs in U.S. History.
Ed Walters and Frances Walters.  Morrow Publishing, 1990.
COMMENT:   The interested reader should also have available the recent
book UFOS'S ARE REAL, HERE'S THE PROOF (UARHTP) by Ed Walters and Bruce
Maccabee (Avon, 1997) in which there is a discussion of several of the
early photos and the difficulty in faking them.   Other sightings in
Gulf Breeze are described in THE GULF BREEZE SIGHTING (TGBS), which
Barbara mentioned, in ABDUCTIONS IN GULF BREEZE (AIGB) by Ed and
Frances Walters (Avon, 1994) and in "Gulf Breeze Without Ed" (GBWE), a
paper presented at the 1991 MUFON Symposium which concentrates on the
hundred or more sightings by other witnesses.  It is important to know
that many other witnesses reported UFOs flying around Gulf Breeze in
the same time frame and, hence, it is possible that others could have
photographed them.   This applies in particular to "Believer Bill"
(discussed below) who claimed to have photographed UFOs at a location
that turned out to be just behind Ed's (old) house.  ("Jane", described
below, claimed her photos were taken long before the Gulf Breeze flap.)

(Barbara continues:)
According to Walters, on November 11, 1987, he was at his
home in Gulf Breeze, when he looked out of a window and saw
a grayish-blue craft hovering just beyond a pine tree in his
front yard.  He grabbed his Polaroid Colorpak camera and
proceeded to take five photographs of the mysterious object.
After showing the photos to his wife, Frances, they decided
to turn them over to friend and editor of the Gulf Breeze
Sentinel Newspaper, Duane Cook.

Six days later, on November 17, Ed Walters presented Duane
Cook with the five photographs. The first and fifth of this
series, along with a letter from the photographer, "Mr. X.",
were reproduced in the Sentinel on November 19.  Ed Walters
claimed he continued to photograph the object(s) until May 1,
1988.  It is impossible to know exactly how many photographs
Walters actually took.  Thirty eight of Walters' photos are
used in the book, along with two from allegedly undisclosed
sources.  This paper will focus on the two other photographs
and issues involving them.
COMMENT:   Strictly speaking it is "impossible" to know how many
pictures Ed took... because he was not being watched 24 hours a
day.  The reader should not, however, be caught by the implication
that he may have taken many more UFO photos.   There is no evidence
that he took any UFO photos other than what he released in the 1990
book (TGBS) and in the 1997 book (UARHTP).
(She continues:)
The first photographs seemingly corroborating Walters' photos
were submitted to the Sentinel on December 3, 1987,
accompanied by a letter by an anonymous person, later to be
called, "Jane".   A second batch of nine photographs was
submitted to the Sentinel on December 23, 1987 by a person
using the pseudonym of "Believer Bill".  One of the nine photos,
along with a letter from  Bill, was printed  in the Sentinel
on December 24.  These are photos 39 and 40 in the book.  What
do they  have to do with Ed Walters other than they prove his
story?  Well, actually they dispute his story.
COMMENT:   Dispute his story?  A statement of her opinion, not fact
(see below).
(She continues:)
During the first week of January 1988 a friend of the Walters'
family, Tommy Smith, came forward and stated that he had been
involved in Walters' UFO "prank".  Smith said that Walters had
originally asked him to claim to be the photographer of hoaxed
photos and to deliver them to the Sentinel but he refused.
Among Smith's other assertions was a claim that the "Believer
Bill" and "Jane" photos printed in the Sentinel were actually
taken by Walters in cooperation with another friend.
COMMENT:  Tommy Smith did not "come forward" publicly until June,
1990. His testimony about Ed faking photos is about as solid as a
Swiss Cheese. Ed told the UFO investigators in January 1988 that a
young man had shown Ed UFO photos.  The young man had told Ed that
he was exploding firecrackers in Gulf Breeze when a UFO had appeared
and he had photographed it.  He asked Ed if he should be go public?
Ed pointed out the problems he (Ed) was having with all the publicity
over his photos and he cautioned against it.  The young man did not
publicize his sighting and asked for anonymity.   Ed respected the
young man's wishes and did not tell the UFO investigators the man's
name. (Hence there was no investigation of the young man's sighting.)
More than 2 years later, in June 1990, after Tommy Smith had gone
public with allegations of hoaxing by Ed, Ed stated that the young
man was, in fact, Tommy Smith. Ed's testimony was supported by another
young friend of Tommy's who told me and other investigators that
Tommy had told him, in late 1987, about exploding firecrackers and
seeing and photographing a UFO.
  The person Tommy "came forward" to with his story was his father.
According to his father, lawyer Thomas Smith, at a press conference
in June, 1990, Tommy told him in late 1987 of a UFO sighting with
pictures.  According to Thomas Smith, a few days or weeks later
Tommy told him the pictures had been faked by Ed.  Neither Smith
said anything in public about these allegations until June, 1990.
At the press conference Mr. Smith was careful to avoid criticizing
any of the other Gulf Breeze witnesses, including those who claimed
to have seen exactly the same thing that Ed photographed. Tommy's
photos were analyzed.  Tommy had claimed that Ed had faked them by
double exposure methods.  However, analysis revealed no evidence of
double exposure and, in fact, the photos appeared to be just single
exposures, not double exposures as Tommy had indicated.   The shape
and color of the depicted UFO was consistent with what Ed had
(She continues:)
The Gulf Breeze Sightings was published in 1990 and included
the following copyright notice and acknowledgment:  "Copyright:
1990 by Ed Walters and Frances Walters.  Clippings on the page
following page 256 reprinted with permission of Pensacola News
Journal."  Why  weren't "Believer Bill" and "Jane"  acknowledged
as the Pensacola News Journal had been?  How could Walters use
the "Believer Bill" and "Jane" photos without the permission of
the photographers?  I wrote to the publisher, William Morrow,
and asked them who owned  the copyright to the "Believer Bill"
and "Jane" photos.  They replied, Ed Walters.

In order to understand the significance of that admission, it is
necessary to learn a little bit about Title 17 of the United
States Code - Copyright Act of 1976.  The most important thing
to remember is that copyright belongs to the original author, in
this case the photographer (1), until the copyright expires  or
is transferred to another partythrough a legal a document
called a "transfer agreement" (2).  It does not matter if the
author is anonymous, or uses a pseudonym, nor does he work need
to be registered at the Library of Congress for the copyright to
be in effect.  However, registration is a safeguard against
infringement. Thus, whoever Bill and Jane are they own the
copyright to the photos and letters submitted to the Sentinel.

Duane Cook used the photos in the newspaper with the permission
of Bill and Jane.  When they submitted their photos and letters
to the Sentinel they gave Cook a nonexclusive license to publish
the materials.  This means that the copyright owner allows the
work to be used in a specific way, with permission, without
relinquishing any of their own exclusive rights, or copyright.
This allowed Cook to use the materials in the Sentinel or any
derivative work in the same series (3). When Cook published the
Bill and Jane materials, he actually  secured their copyright as
part of a collective work, the newspaper (4). Even though Cook
had possession of the material objects, the photos and letters,
he did not own them, nor did he have the authority to turn them
over to a third party for publication (5).

There are only two ways that Walters could legally own the
copyright.  He could have a transfer agreement (6) from Bill
and Jane or he could be the  photographer.  I obtained  a copy
of his Registration from the Library of Congress in Washington,
D.C. USA.  Walters copyright registration for the photographs
used in The Gulf Breeze Sightings is VAU-164-606, this is public
record.  It is a two page document, but we will only be
concerned with questions 1,2 and 4; the remainder being
irrelevant to this discussion.  The following is taken from the

    1) Title of this work:    Gulf Breeze Sightings
       Nature of this work:   Photographs
    2) Name of author:        Edward Daniel Walters
Nature of authorship:  Photos taken by Edward Daniel
    4) Copyright claimant(s): Edward Walters / POB 715 / Gulf
                              Breeze, Fl.
       Transfer:              N/A

The copyright form gives the following instructions for item
four:  "If the claimant(s) named here in space 4 are different
from the author(s) named in space 2, give a brief statement
of how the claimant(s)obtained ownership of the copyright".  Ed
Walters states the he is the author of the work - the
photographs - he claims the copyright ownership and there is
not a transfer agreement.  This can not be misinterpreted.  He
claims to be the photographer of all photographs used in the
Gulf Breeze Sightings which would include the "Believer Bill"
and "Jane"  photos.

I decided to write to Walters and ask him.  I began a brief
correspondence with him in February of 1997.  I wrote four
letters, received three replies.  The only one of real concern
is the one dated March 8, 1997.  In it I once again asked
Walters if he were the rightful owner of the "Believer Bill"
and "Jane" photos he used in The Gulf Breeze Sightings.  He

Ownership was given me by Cook.  The reg. copyrights are
recorded w/Lib. of Cong.  You are still on NOTICE. Signed,
Ed Walters. P.S. next day. My copyright attor. assures me
I have ownership.  (Also copyrighted with Morrow Publishing.
I will not address this further.) SEE YOU IN COURT.

Once again Walters' ownership is confirmed.   Walters states
he owns  the copyright to the "Believer Bill" and "Jane"
photos and his attorney backs that up.  Morrow says he owns
the copyright, his attorney says he owns the copyright, and
he  says he  owns the copyright then I think it is clear
that Ed Walters owns the copyright.  Unfortunately for Walters
this admission gives credibility to Tommy Smith's claims that
Walters took the Bill and Jane photos.  With this in mind, all
of Tommy Smith's claims should be reevaluated.
COMMENT: Anyone who wishes a detailed analysis of Tommy Smith's
claims can request it from brumac@compuserve.com.   There is a
brief commentary on Tommy's claims at the web site www.skiesare.
demon.co.uk. Read the paper entitled "Ed Walters, the Model and
Tommy Smith".
>From the copyright evidence it is apparent that Ed Walters
created "Believer Bill" and "Jane".  He  took the photographs,
used two different types of cameras, a "Hot Shot" for Bill and
a 35 mm for Jane.  This demonstrates his ability to use cameras
other than the Colorpak and to produce multiple exposures.  In
addition to the photographs and letters, he fabricated a telephone
call from the nonexistent Jane;  including a transcript of the
make believe conversation as a chapter in his book.  It is obvious
that Ed Walters is capable of an elaborate and sustained deception.
This must at the very minimum cast doubt on everything he has said
and done.
COMMENT:  This discussion about the copyright does not prove Ed created
the Bill and Jane photos.  Hence Barbara's claim that "this demonstrates
his ability...."  is also not proven.   In contradiction to Barbara's
conclusion, many other factors in this case indicate that Ed told the
truth because many of the photos he took were beyond his capability to


(I have deleted Barbara's references 1-6 to documents which discuss
copyright law.)

ENDING COMMENT:  At the time of this writing, Sept. 30, 1997, the book
UFOS ARE REAL, HERE'S THE PROOF (Avon, paperback) has been available for
7 months.  Within that book are technical arguments which show that Ed's
1987-1988 photos were not faked.   The book also includes descriptions
of sightings in the last ten years which are even more complex in some
ways than the earlier sightings, and these newer sightings were photo-
graphed with a Model 600 Polaroid or a 35 mm Canon camea and several
were also videotaped.   The videos are particularly convincing.
Several of these videos, including the "beach video" and the "shadow
video" are described in the paper ACCELERATION which can be found on
the web site of the National Institute for Discovery Science (NIDS) at
www.accessnv.com/nids (click on the "what else" button).
  Ed is not the only person who has seen UFOs in Gulf Breeze, as every-
one knows (including Barbara).  There probably have been several hundred
(I haven't kept count) sightings there in the last 10 years.   TGBS dis-
cusses many of the early sightings.   A reasonably complete list up to
spring 1991 is in the paper GBWE (mentioned above).   In that paper I
list 93 non-Ed sightings between Nov. 11, 1987 and July 30, 1988 and 82
non-Ed sightings between Aug. 1, 1988 and April 1, 1990.  Between April
1 1990 and April 19, 1991 (the last date in the paper) there were 67
sightings, many of which were the "red bubba" type.  (A "red bubba"
sighting generally involved a single, or sometimes several, red lights
moving through the sky which would turn white, flash brightly, and then
disappear.)  Ed was present at many, but not all, of these, as were
dozens of other witnesses.  Between November 1990 and July 1992 the Gulf
Breeze Research Team (MUFON members in the Gulf Breeze/Pensacola area)
logged about 170 sightings of red bubba or rings of light.   ( During a
ring sighting the witnesses saw a circular or elliptical ring of dis-
crete white or red lights.  Sometimes a dark body or structure moving
with the ring would block out the stars.  Sometimes there were other
lights associated with the ring.)  There were also a few daylight craft
sightings.  Some of the bubba sightings are described in AIGB and in
  In UARHTP there are discussions of 93 sightings in the Gulf Breeze area,
25 of which are Ed's, covering the period Nov. 1987 to Nov. 1995.  (This
includes the Sept. 16, 1991 ring sighting when I was present along with
Ed and 30 other people.)  Many of these sightings were of the bubba type.
In several cases triangulation was accomplished and speeds were determined.
In one case (Feb. 7, 1992) a diffraction grating was used to photograph a
"bubba" and a road flare for comparison.  The spectra were different.
This and the speed calculations ruled out balloon-borne flares, the
"standard" explanation, for bubba.   UARHTP also includes the discussion
of numerous daylight photos and videos by Ed as well as some by other
  Barbara Becker has not discussed the more recent sightings by Ed nor has
she discussed the sightings by others (except Bill and Jane, whom she re-
jects as witnesses).  Instead, she has concentrated her effort on dis-
proving the early photos and sightings by Ed.  She has spent years trying
to prove Ed faked his photos, as shown by her 1990 "Thoughtful Opinion"
paper.  Now, finally, her ultimate proof that Ed faked his photos seems
to be based not on analysis of the sightings themselves, but on a legal
technicality involving the publication of Bill and Jane photos.

  This seems like a slender thread, indeed, on which to support her al-
legations of what must now be considered a massive hoax/conspiracy/cover-
up by more than one person. Or, would she rather have us believe that Ed's
early photos were fakes, but the more recent (post 1988) photos (such as
the January 8, 1990 photos taken in the presence of other witnesses who
saw the UFO and saw Ed photograph it) are real?
  Conventional skeptical wisdom would say you can't have it both ways.
Either Ed faked them all or he faked none. What do you think?


                    Science, Logic, and the UFO Debate:

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