Perception, misperception, and misinterpretation of UFOs (From our 2005 blog)
Andy Roberts, and many UK ufologists, such as Jenny Randles, think that most, if not all, UFOs are a matter of misperception of prosaic phenomena; some unknown by science, but most misperceived for various reasons by sightings witnesses.
UFO sightings are perceived under a number of circumstances, all of which can’t be enumerated here but include atmospherics, physiology of the witness(es), psychological make-up of the witness(es), and the time-factor of the event or “object” being seen.
Then there is the interpretation of the perception, which is influenced by such factors as education/intelligence of the witness(es), psychological attributes of the witness(es), and
various predilections of the witness(es); e.g., the need to be noticed, the need not to be, et cetera.
Are there any UFO events which have not been misperceived? Isaac Koi thinks so. But no one here can think of any, off-hand. No UFO sighting has been clear-cut as far as we can recall.
The Socorro incident, which is an important UFO account, is not seen by us as a clear-cut sighting of an ET craft or a secret, military craft. (Other interpretations, such as a hoax or meteorological, do not apply here; witness Lonnie Zamora providing enough information to rule both of those interpretations out.)
The sighting was not misperceived, but the interpretation by UFO investigators is still open to question, despite the rabid, quasi-ET interpretation by some ufologists such as David Rudiak.
So it boils down to misinterpretation more than misperception, although elements of perception are a sine qua non of any UFO investigation.