Rapper B.o.B. recently started a GoFundMe crowdfunding campaign to collect donations that would allow him to launch a variety of equipment, including satellites and balloons, into space in an effort to “prove the Earth is flat.” And the campaign didn’t go unnoticed, and some of NASA’s astronauts decided to directly respond to the self-proclaimed “flat Earther.”
Bobby Ray Simmons Jr., who performs under the name B.o.B., wants to launch his own satellites, providing him with a mechanism to “find the curve.” The GoFundMe page is designed to help raise money for the pursuit, providing funds for the satellites as well as other research equipment like weather balloons, drones, and blimps.
B.o.B.’s initial target was $200,000, but he increased the goal to $1 million based on crowd suggestions to expand the scope of the experiment and enhance his testing capabilities.
Along the way, a few NASA astronauts decided to comment on B.o.B.’s project, replying to him directly over Twitter.
Astronaut Scott Kelly posted a video on Twitter with a comment, and some advice, that read, “Show you the curve? Here you go @bobatl ! One full orbit around Earth. Maybe donate the funds raised to #PuertoRicoRelief.”
Terry Virts sent out a tweet saying, “I can save BoB a lot of money- The Earth is round. I flew around it.”
Less than an hour later, Buzz Aldrin, the famed astronaut who flew on the Apollo XI and Gemini 12 missions, also chimed in on the issue, saying, “I did too. It’s called an orbit: the curved path of a celestial object around a star, planet, or moon.”
Virts replied to Aldrin’s post, saying, “In fact, I have the pictures to prove it!” and referenced his book which includes various images taken from the International Space Station.
B.o.B. initially announced his status as a “flat Earther” on Twitter in 2015, so his interest in the subject is well-known to others who subscribe to the theory or who follow the rapper on social media.
As of this writing, B.o.B.’s campaign has been active for 15 days and has raised $5,177 in donations from 195 donors.
The rapper initially contributed $1,000 towards the project to help get it started and has pledged to keep all who contribute informed “with step-by-step documentation of the process!”
GoFundMe campaigns aren’t required to have a deadline upon which the goal would have to be met.
— Scott Kelly (@StationCDRKelly) September 27, 2017