The History of Yowie-Research
Yowie / Bigfoot
By: Tina Diaz
Sydney Morning Herald (NSW)
Date: June 9, 1991
Page Number: 5
While most people who saw the first published photograph of the Abominable Snowman were quick to believe great hairy yetis wandered the Himalayas, some paused to think: "Could Bigfoot be a fraud?"
     The world's sceptics now sit back and smile as the only evidence -photographs of "yeti" footprints and scalps - has been exposed as fake.
     But they wonder why some people, after being told there is no evidence to prove the existence of Bigfoot, still believe yetis are alive and well.
     The Bigfoot saga was one of the topics at the Australian Skeptics Association's seventh annual convention in Sydney at the weekend.
     The scene was odd: sceptics listening to sceptics talk about scepticism.
     The association's president, Mr Barry Williams, said most people were gullible and wanted to believe interesting stories but should be sceptical about everything.
     "If you've got a blundering, inarticulate twit telling you something, you're not going to believe it are you?" he said. "If you speak to a car salesman or real estate agent, you're going to be cautious, so why should you believe everyone?"
     Mr Williams always has a point to prove if handed a spoon: anyone can bend it if they apply pressure to the middle of the handle.
     "You don't need psychic powers to bend a spoon, just physical strength, so don't believe otherwise," he said.
     As serious as being sceptical may sound, sceptics at yesterday's conference said they were not so sceptical that they extracted the humour from every tale, but just cautious enough to be wary of certain people and stories.
     Dr Colin Groves, a reader in anthropology at the Australian National University and yesterday's speaker on yetis, admitted he believed in the 1960s there was a chance that Bigfoot existed.
     He started to question it when one report revealed that one paw was a snow leopard's, not a yeti's.
     "I guess I wanted them to exist. It's an exciting idea - these large creatures more closely related to us than chimps - and they'd been hiding for so long," Dr Groves said.
     "Many people in Russia still believe in the yeti, I don't know why. They now look in the Tien Shan Mountains in the Soviet Union and China," he said. "There are still many yeti enthusiasts in the Western world. Some scientists still look."
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