[meteorite-list] Museum investigation: 'Probably a rock, not meteorite'
From: Jason Utas <meteoritekid_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2010 15:10:43 -0700
To limit posts, Martin's is responded to above, Carl's, below:
> "If I pick anything up off of the surface of the earth, at this point in
> time, it already belongs to someone - unless I manage to find it in
> international waters,...."
> Not correct, Jason.
> There exists the concept of "ownerless objects".
Actually, Martin, it's more correct than your answer. See below.
> The third stone of the Neuschwanstein-fall was such an object, said the
Most countries don't classify meteorites as "ownerless objects," so
the fact that you can pick out a single exception is...well, it proves
that, in Germany, a single court decision decided as much for a single
Generally speaking, most countries have laws or have come to legal
decisions that give meteorite ownership to the landholder or to the
country itself regardless of the private deed-holder.
> Btw if we now start to discuss about to whom the dirt sticking on the bottom
> side of our shoe soles might belong,
> then I think we will converge the intellectual content of meteorite
Right! But we're talking about walking through someone's mine and
coming out with diamonds stuck to the mud on the bottom of your shoe.
> Cooee!! ?Meteorite laws are SILLY !! ?And very TRIVIAL.
Not so trivial if you consider their scientific importance, value, and rarity...
> There is nothing to sophisticate about.
> Why there are meteorite laws and what is the simple intention of them?
> A few men and women decided:
> We want meteorites. We want them:
> 1) for free
> 2) without any efforts
> 3) we don't want to have to find them
> Plain and simple.
> With 2) and 3) everyone agrees, with 1) not.
Why are all laws made? A few people decided that it would be better
for societies to have rules like 'you don't steal from other people,'
or things like that. And I don't see you arguing with laws that
protect vertebrate fossils from amateur fossil hunters in the United
States - a similar law that I brought up in the past...that you never
> What the problem is, that some don't get it, that with 1), 2) and 3)
> together, they don't get no meteorites at all.
> Says the Meteoritical Bulletin published by the Meteoritical Society,
Well, it's interesting. While we all might benefit sooner from the
influx of data, again, I think this is something of an issue with
regards to negligent hunting methods, etc. There's something to
having a scientist pick up the pieces of a fall, record the
strewn-field, and make an accurate map of it. It's half of why the
Whetstone Mountains fall is as cool as it is, and...well, we differ in
opinion as to how important that is. So...perhaps I'm again wasting
my time in insisting that it be done right, but they have in large
part assured that it is.
> And that some care, some not.
> That's the whole secret.
Hardly a secret.
>> I wouldn't equate it at all to the pole analogy, because...well, it's
>> different. The pole is already owned by someone to begin with.
> THERE YOU GO AGAIN! NOBODY WANTS THE POLE JASON. USING MY ANALOGY IT WOULD BE THE CAR OWNERSHIP THAT IS IN QUESTION HERE NOT THE POLE. THE POINT IS THAT THE CAR WAS NOT FOUND. NOR WAS THE LORTON METEORITE.
Either way, both the car and pole are previously owned. I'm sorry -
in your message you noted the pole as hitting the car, so I logically
assumed that the pole was the meteorite.
Cars typically don't hit meteorites, as they do in your analogy.
It's the other way around.
>> You can't really argue that, if I hit a pole with my car, I will gain
>> the right to own it.
> THINK HERE JASON . NOBODY IS SAYING THE LORTON METEORITE OWNS THE BUILDING BECAUSE IT HIT IT ANY MORE THAN THE POLE OWNS THE CAR . WE ARE TALKING THIRD PARTY HERE. THIS CONCEPT REQUIRE DEEP THOUGHT HERE. HAVE SOME COFFEE.
Right, but now you're not even addressing the point, and you're
arguing with the semantics of my statement that was based on your own
I...can't argue with an inane statement that doesn't even address the issue.
I think I might have to clarify this for you.
You stated, "It hit legally rented space and was found in much the
same way as a car that hits a telephone pole. Do you say the "pole
found the car"?"
My reply addressed both aspects of your question. I really don't see
what you're flipping out about, or why you're turning to insults when
all I did was elaborate on your point -- well, I address the second
half of it in the line below this statement.
> Even if my car is parked and a telephone pole
>> falls on it, that pole is still the property of whoever owned the pole
>> - if it weren't, the pole would become mine and I would have to pay
>> for the damages caused by *my* pole.
>> And if anything that hits my car becomes mine...well, let's just say
>> that I'm sorely tempted to try to drive my way into the lobby of the
>> AMNH and give good ole' Willamette a nudge with my bumper.
>> The only reason that this is debatable is because meteorites are
> AND A FALL IS ALSO DIFFERENT THAN A FIND.
The interesting thing is that you don't even address my comment in the
paragraph above that deals with the pole hitting the car (as opposed
to the idea of a car running into a pole, which apparently never
happens and is a ridiculous thing to even say [sarcasm]).
Yes, and fall are indeed 'different than finds.' I also elaborate on
that below. I'll point out precisely when.
> They're not like anything terrestrial in that no one owns
>> them before they hit the ground. If I pick anything up off of the
>> surface of the earth, at this point in time, it already belongs to
> AGAIN THIS IS NOT A FIND ON THE GROUND. IT NEVER HIT THE GROUND. IT HIT A MOVING CAR.
"Before they hit the ground." Clarification enough? I suppose not.
That's why I proceeded to clarify below.
> - unless I manage to find it in international waters, in which
>> case I might be able to get away with claiming ownership with no
>> strings attached (I'm excluding Antarctica, for obvious reasons).
>> There are disputed borders and crap like that, granted, but everything
>> has already been claimed, at least once.
>> Not meteoroids. Existing meteorites, yes, but meteoroids, up there in
>> space, destined to fall, are still unclaimed property.
> ONLY UNTIL WA GOVERNMENT STEPS IN.
"Meteoroids." Huh. I wonder why I used that word. I wonder what it
could possibly mean. It might mean...a meteorite...before it hits the
ground....maybe. I don't know, man. All this lingo is waaaaay too
confusing for me.
You don't seem to get that Martin's last post was satirical...that
might be your problem.
>> It's why they're different.
> YES, THEY ARE WAY DIFFERENT.
Wait a sec. You bash me above for not saying it, and then agree with
me when I say it down here? Do you even read a post in its entirety
before replying to it? You literally insult me up above for not
saying it [above in my post], and then simply agree when I do?
I can't have an intelligent conversation with someone who doesn't even
hear and argument out before trying to bash me for what I have to say
(especially when you actually agree with it). I'm sorry, but in the
future if you do continue to post as such, I'll simply ignore you.
>> In this case, I think the most relevant issue has to do with renters
>> versus owners being able to claim meteorites. Ideally I think that it
>> should depend on the existing contract - if the renter is liable to
>> fix damages, it seems to me that they should have the right to the
>> stone, and if the owner is responsible, surely they should get the
>> But then a question would arise - what about the owner who has made a
>> contract that, while it holds the renter liable for damages, makes an
>> exception for when a meteorite falls through their roof, offering to
>> pay for the one-time-repairs and asking for the meteorite...in that
>> case, wouldn't the renter have the option of saying no, and then
>> keeping the stone if they paid for the repairs, as was contractually
>> asked of them?
> YES, IT COMES DOWN TO WHO ARGUES THE CASE BETTER IN COURT. I THINK THE PREVIOUS CASES HAD RATHER LIMP LAWYERS. ESPECIALLY THE HODGES CASE. THE LANDLORD HAD A LAWYER AND MRS. HODGES OBVIOUSLY DID NOT. GEE, I WONDER WHY THE LANDLORD WON THAT ONE.
The landlord probably won because, in this country, a meteorite
belongs to the owner of the land it falls on. It fell on the owner's
land. Not knowing the terms of the rent/lease, I don't know how the
scenario would unfold even *if* the court saw things in the same way
that I do. And since neither I nor you actually know the details,
presuming as much (and making the typical "the rich person had a
lawyer so they won the case unfairly" sort of argument) doesn't get us
>> Interesting stuff..
> YES IT IS. IN SOME CASES THEY ARGUED OWNERSHIP BASED ON THE METEORITE BECAME PART OF THE LAND BUT IN THESE CASES THE METEORITE SIMPLY COULD NOT HAVE BECAUSE IT NEVER TOUCHED THE GROUND. AS YOU SAY A DIFFERENT SITUATION. .
I mean, by what you've been saying all along, if it never hit the
ground, it wouldn't be a "meteorite"...so maybe I should get angry and
just reply to you using all caps and only address your dictional
inconsistency and lack of clarity/misuse of terminology.
But, regardless of your hypocritical reference to these
"pseudo-meteorites," the new suggested definition of a meteorite
http://www.mail-archive.com/meteorite-list at meteoritecentral.com/msg84151.html
I find it very interesting that this post/definition was so quickly
forgotten - it was sent to the list barely a week and a half ago!
At least I thought it was interesting....
> -----Urspr?ngliche Nachricht-----
> Von: meteorite-list-bounces at meteoritecentral.com
> [mailto:meteorite-list-bounces at meteoritecentral.com] Im Auftrag von Jason
> Gesendet: Mittwoch, 14. April 2010 19:53
> An: Meteorite-list
> Betreff: Re: [meteorite-list] Museum investigation: 'Probably a rock,not
> Carl, All,
> I wouldn't equate it at all to the pole analogy, because...well, it's
> different. ?The pole is already owned by someone to begin with.
> You can't really argue that, if I hit a pole with my car, I will gain
> the right to own it. ?Even if my car is parked and a telephone pole
> falls on it, that pole is still the property of whoever owned the pole
> - if it weren't, the pole would become mine and I would have to pay
> for the damages caused by *my* pole.
> And if anything that hits my car becomes mine...well, let's just say
> that I'm sorely tempted to try to drive my way into the lobby of the
> AMNH and give good ole' Willamette a nudge with my bumper.
> Visit the Archives at http://www.meteoritecentral.com/mailing-list-archives.html
> Meteorite-list mailing list
> Meteorite-list at meteoritecentral.com
Received on Wed 14 Apr 2010 06:10:43 PM PDT