What does it take to keep a conspiracy secret?

The Corona situation has seen a dramatic increase in conspiracy theories. Not only concerning the virus itself, its origin and propagation, but linking it to a multitude of other claimed conspiracies.

I am not a big fan of conspiracy theories. I see it as a an attempt to short cut years of hard work by gaining access to “secret knowledge” that makes the person “special” and “woke” and able to look upon other people as inferior, as “sheeple”.

To lighten up all the serious conspiracy theorists, I wrote a mini-story that got some traction around on social media;

The fake moon landing "space ship" touched the ground after a flight
close to the dome. The pilot would have easily seen that the Earth is
flat. But he was in on it. Its true mission was to deliver another
batch of microchiped vaccines to the newly opened Gates University in
an African country.  Built by the Freemasons and funded by Soros, the
Illuminati compound was the perfect testing ground for COVID-23, aptly
named by the Reptilians because ((3×15)+(22×9))×4×2/3-18 = 666. The
chemtrailed sheeple would soon be hooked up to the Illuminati
controlled Starlink 5G network, headed by Hillary Clinton and Elvis.
Our only hope was to get Don Trump Jr reelected and Alex Jones as
Secretary of State.

Johnny was among the special people with access to the secret wisdom.
He was woke. Lucky him.

It’s not that conspiracies do not exist. They do. But large scale conspiracies are impossible to maintain. And this brings us to the title of this blog post:

What does it really take to keep a conspiracy secret?

According to a clever mathematical paper it is really hard to keep many “in on it” over time. To quote the article in Popular Science summarizing the mathematical model:

If you want to keep things a secret for five years, have less than
2,531 people in on the plot.  If you're shooting for a decade, 1,257
is the largest you can go. And if you want to have a conspiracy that
lasts a century or more (like the DaVinci Code) then you need to keep
your numbers really small, down to 125 people.

This effectively blows to pieces conspiracies such as “fake moon landing”, “flat Earth” and “reptilians”. They are simply impossible to contain.

It’s also wise to take into account Halon’s Razor:

“Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity”

Link to this post: https://isene.org/2020/05/Conspiracy.html