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The Magic Broom Hoax Did Not Break Gravity

A broom hoax meme claims that gravity is magically making brooms stand on their own, contrary to science.

Every day another hoax makes its way through the internet, and today a magic broom hoax claimed that brooms can stand on their own.

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The "broom hoax:" magic can't break gravity

It's easy to believe in magic when scientific knowledge is lacking. So it goes when a very old meme floats to the surface of discourse to claim that the Earth's gravity is going to "shift," and because of this, brooms (of all things!) will be capable of standing on their own. For an undisclosed amount of time.

Of course, this is not the case. Although we know surprisingly little about gravity itself, we know a lot about how it affects the physical world. In fact, we've known since Isaac Newton first described it in his 1687 masterpiece, "Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica;" as a constant, measurable force.

But memes and hoaxes don't need science or history to work, which is why the rumor that Earth's gravity is in a special mood that causes brooms to stand on their own made its way through the internet. The most interesting thing about memes is how adept they are at manipulating our belief systems. Consider this person:

Believe it or not, it's not unlikely that this Twitter user is in on the gag, and is simply cashing-in on the social media trend, for the RTs. It has been known to happen.

It should but doesn't go without saying that NASA did not and never will announce that gravity is actually a magic force, let alone one that coincidentally changes just to make our brooms spooky.

Brooms have a low center of gravity

In fact, brooms have a low center of gravity, which means that if the bristles are mashed outwards to encompass a larger surface area, the broom can "stand on its own," under normal, Earth-bound gravity.

The "broom hoax" is an old one, and usually reappears during vernal equinox (the first day of Spring); when waves of superstition reach high-tide.

In the philosophy of science, Occam's razor is basically the idea that the simplest explanation — with the greatest explanatory power — is usually the correct one. So don't be fooled.

Gravity wins.

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