From this tweet by Neil deGrasse Tyson:

The rise of flat-Earthers in the United States...

And from The Guardian

Researchers believe they have identified the prime driver for a startling rise in the number of people who think the Earth is flat...

Is there a rise in the number of people who think the Earth is flat?

I found this YouGov article which states "Just 66% of millennials firmly believe that the earth is round." The same article shows that a higher percentage of respondents believe the Earth is round with an increasing age group. However, YouGov doesn't publicly release its methodology, so I am not particularly inclined to believe its results (especially if uncorroborated).

I have also seen the graph below. However, it indicates (supposedly) search volume, which may not be proportional to the number of flat-Earthers (i.e. if I search "Flat earth," it doesn't necessarily mean I am a flat-Earther).

enter image description here

Note: The tweet mentions "in the United States." This question relates to people in general as in the entire Earth population.

  • 3
    Your last point is very relevant. Google trends or any other traffic metrics don't mean that there are more believers, just that it's a trendy topic. This exact question for example, increase traffic about flat earth topic, without claiming it's true
    – Kepotx
    Apr 11, 2019 at 11:29
  • 4
    As for your final Note, that most probably makes the question unanswerable, there are unlikely to exist any worldwide representative surveys with this question, that have been consistently asked over time. If you limit it to the USA then it may be answerable (or not). Also, the tweet by Neil deGrasse Tyson makes the claim only for the USA.
    – gerrit
    Apr 11, 2019 at 11:31
  • 7
    I think you could definitely say that there's an obvious rise in the visibility of the flat-Earth movement; but beyond that would be rather difficult to determine. It seems unlikely you will find statistics for the number of "flat-Earthers" over time. There's also the issue of Poe's Law. Even looking at the numbers of Youtube videos, or Facebook groups supporting the topic, it's not clear how many of those people are being satirical. I think people are a lot more aware of the movement in the internet age; but if they're anything like me, people looking up "flat Earth" don't support it.
    – JMac
    Apr 11, 2019 at 11:38
  • 6
    @JMac Or enjoy arguing for a flat earth just to make everyone else frustrated.
    – pipe
    Apr 11, 2019 at 11:50
  • 1
    I am a fan of the title of that chart: "Spheres of influence".
    – Ertai87
    Apr 11, 2019 at 18:26


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