Scientists at NASA are so certain that there is NO chance the world is ending this week that they've already scripted, produced, and published an informational announcement for the day after Friday -- when, according to popular theory (and party enthusiasts), Earth will cease to exist.
"The world will not end in 2012," the scientists write. "Our planet has been getting along just fine for more than 4 billion years, and credible scientists worldwide know of no threat associated with 2012."
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The story started with claims that Nibiru, a supposed planet discovered by the Sumerians, is headed toward Earth. This catastrophe was initially predicted for May 2003, but when nothing happened the doomsday date was moved forward to December 2012 and linked to the end of one of the cycles in the ancient Mayan calendar at the winter solstice in 2012 -- hence the predicted doomsday date of December 21, 2012.
And regarding the "total blackout" of Earth predicted from December 23 to 25:
Absolutely not. Neither NASA nor any other scientific organization is predicting such a blackout. The false reports on this issue claim that some sort of "alignment of the Universe" will cause a blackout. There is no such alignment (see next question). Some versions of this rumor cite an emergency preparedness message from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. This is simply a message encouraging people to be prepared for emergencies, recorded as part of a wider government preparedness campaign. It never mentions a blackout.
There you have it, conspiracy junkies. You can still party like it's the end of days on Thursday, Friday ... and throughout the weekend.