“Ancient Armageddon”: How SEO Is Helping Archaeologists Debunk Conspiracy Theories

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The viewpoints revealed within this story are solely the author’s and do not reflect the viewpoints and beliefs of Best SMM Panel or its affiliates.

You may have become aware of “Ancient Apocalypse”, a series in which host Graham Hancock proposes controversial theories about the origins of ancient civilizations.

It spent a week trending in the global leading 10 on Netflix, accumulating around 24,620,000 watch hours between November 14th and November 20th, 2022.

Netflix lends authority to the program by categorizing it as a “docuseries,” and IMDB classifies it as a “documentary” and “history.”

However online, it’s been shrouded in controversy, and search algorithms might be fulfilling good-faith critiques about the show from researchers and teachers– as some working archaeologists have deemed the show dubious pseudoscience at best, and unsafe false information at worst.

The Society For American Archaeology wrote a letter to Netflix asking it to reclassify and contextualize the program, citing the host’s “aggressive rhetoric,” the program’s “false claims,” and the associations that the theories presented have with “racist, white supremacist ideologies.”

But this is a story about the role SEO plays in the debate– how researchers and science communicators present their reviews of the show, and how audiences discover them.

Search algorithms get a lot of critiques for how they can be used to spread misinformation.

However in this case, I’ve seen assistance for teachers and scientists who have actually devoted to pressing back on popular pseudoscience.

Developers Rebutting “Ancient Apocalypse” Get An Increase From SEO

I initially discovered of the controversy from Buy YouTube Subscribers creator “History With Kayleigh,” who, while not an academic or certified archaeologist, produces instructional videos about ancient history and historical sites.

She interacted with Tweets from researchers who had responded and “decided to attempt and write a reasonable counterclaim to the show,” as she told me.

Kayleigh’s video about “Ancient Armageddon” isn’t the best-performing video on her channel. Still, it was definitely carrying out above the average of her current releases in a brief amount of time, at 67,000 views on December 1st.

Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December

2022 However then, I took another screenshot of the channel after the weekend, on December 5th

. Kayleigh launched a 2nd video, and the very first” Ancient Apocalypse: Fact Or Fiction?” had actually currently grown to 104,000 views

. Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 Kayleigh wasn’t the only developer to publish content about the Netflix series. Dr. Bill Farley, an archaeologist and associate teacher at Southern Connecticut State University who runs a

little Buy YouTube Subscribers channel about archaeology in his spare time, made one of the earliest Buy YouTube Subscribers videos critiquing Hancock and the show. And while his reach is much smaller, his videos about”Ancient Apocalypse” exploded. Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 Dr. Farley shared screenshots of his Buy YouTube Subscribers analytics, demonstrating that

his very first video about Graham Hancock drew more traffic than normal from Google searches. The below screenshots are from November 22nd, when

the video was still around 5,000 views. For that particular video, the” external”traffic source was around 28 %, compared to his channel average of around 10%. A 3rd of that external traffic was from Google.

Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022< img src= "https://cdn.searchenginejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/unnamed-639a5869b100b-sej.png"alt=" A screenshot of YouTube channel"Archaeology Tube"internal analytics"/ > Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022

The following screenshot is the total channel data for contrast. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November

2022 He likewise shared the search terms the video was carrying out finest for within Buy YouTube Subscribers search. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube “Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 I checked in again with his channel on December 5th. Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 This first video still gains most of its

traffic from search terms. External views on it had to do with 11% lower on December 5th than they were on November 22nd. This makes good sense with publications picking up the story

and filling up search engine results pages(SERPs ). Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archaeology Tube”Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 The 2nd video has wildly various stats, being pushed primarily by Buy YouTube Subscribers’s browse functions like advised videos. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022

This time, Buy YouTube Subscribers appears to have actually recognized the interest in a trending topic and pressed the video appropriately. In the very first video that he made about”Ancient Apocalypse,”Dr. Farley attended to Hancock straight with a critique concentrating on the relationship between the theories postured in the show, and white supremacy.

In the 2nd video, Dr. Farley focused on unmasking the particular frauds in the show.

He told me, “There is a MARKED difference in the reactions to the 2 videos. In video # 1, I mention white supremacy and the history of Atlantean myths with bigotry. That video has … hundreds of disparaging comments [that] are misogynistic, racist, and homophobic.

The second video also has some comments like this, but much more favorable comments or useful criticisms. This video just spoke straight to a few of the fallacies in the program however does not directly deal with racism or white supremacy.”

Even with the negative response, the truth stays that people seen and engaged with the video, as this screenshot of the video’s engagement statistics shows.

Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022< img src= "https://cdn.searchenginejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/unnamed-4-639a5a656371e-sej.png"alt=" A screenshot of YouTube channel "Archaeology Tube"internal analytics"/ > One might argue that this is a fluke– and that these relatively successful efficiency metrics are merely about taking advantage of a trending keyword.

However Buy YouTube Subscribers algorithms work in a different way from Google Search.

Buy YouTube Subscribers utilizes metadata about videos to estimate importance, however it likewise utilizes user engagement signals such as watch time to test the importance of videos to particular questions. Buy YouTube Subscribers’s top ranking factor is viewer satisfaction.

“History with Kayleigh” has a big following currently that most likely gave her videos an increase. But Dr. Farley doesn’t have a big following, and the reach of his videos comes down to natural discovery.

People Search For Info About “Ancient Apocalypse” And Discover Review

Other researchers, with little and big followings, have likewise seen abnormally high traffic about this topic on other platforms.

Dr. Flint Dibble, an archaeologist at Cardiff University, composed a defense for The Conversation and kept in mind the appeal of the piece on Buy Twitter Verification:

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verification, November 2022

I connected to Dr. Dibble for his perspective. He mentioned: “I have actually gotten a large range of responses to my thread. Plenty of abuse, and a lot of appreciation. Numerous people clearly found it while searching for more information on the show.

Some, specifically within the first week of release, mentioned they were browsing Buy Twitter Verification to find responses to it either before viewing or mid-watch.

Individuals who pointed out finding the thread through a search were all grateful for quickly getting a clearer context for the show.”

He shared an example of a Buy Twitter Verification user who went looking for info about the program while they were seeing it and appreciated the critique he published on the platform:

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verification, December 2022

Dr. Andre Costopoulos, an archaeologist at the University Of Alberta, wrote about the program on his personal WordPress blog and shared his blog analytics with me in late November.

The content he blogged about “Ancient Armageddon” became the very best performing on his site in a matter of days, with Google Browse comprising the clear bulk of traffic.

Screenshot of internal analytics from archeothoughts.wordpress.com, November 2022

Total, this isn’t a huge quantity of traffic. What’s interesting here is how the material about the program compares to other material by this creator, especially due to the fact that the site is relatively small.

Dr. Costopoulos thinks that researchers can reach audiences hungry for information if they learn the tools.

“Scientists can use these tools just as well as our pseudo-alters,” he informed me, “and frequently to much better impact, since we in fact have proof to support our claims.”

How SEO Can Be Utilized To Spread Misinformation

Browse algorithms are hotbeds of false information.

Dissemination of conspiracies and misinformation has been a hot subject on several platforms, from Buy YouTube Subscribers to Buy Facebook Verification.

Google has been considering misinformation and how best to solve it for years.

Individuals who market conspiracy theories and pseudoscience know this. They’re skilled online marketers and storytellers, and they’re proficient at SEO.

That can make it a lot more tough to communicate good science than false information. Researchers have demanding tasks beyond marketing and publishing, and their conclusions are typically difficult to communicate effectively.

They’re not trained to do it, and academia is sluggish to adapt to digital patterns.

That leads the way for a conspiracy theory to take off with little more than a good story and excellent marketing.

Dr. Farley said: “By and large, I believe academics have no idea how to do SEO (I’m simply stumbling around in the dark myself), and misinformation folks are much, better at it. Academics, honestly, don’t have the time to discover this stuff.

It would be truly cool if our universities would help … however I have actually discovered the media departments at unis are very old school. If I brought this to them, they ‘d pitch a media statement to the regional newspaper.

Our media department is great and has fantastic intentions, however by and large, they’re early in the video game on using social networks as a media tool.”

So we have a conundrum where scientists, who aren’t necessarily trained in communications and marketing, take on versus expert marketers of concepts. And they’re doing it with individual passion jobs on top of their existing jobs.

When it concerns natural reach, researchers need allies.

Is Critique Of “Ancient Armageddon” Having An Effect?

The outcomes do not appear as encouraging when you zoom out and take a look at the SERPs for “Ancient Apocalypse.”

I opened an incognito window in Chrome and made certain my VPN was switched on (United States area), then searched for [ancient armageddon]

The results here are a bit of a mixed bag. The first outcome is simply a link to the program. That’s to be expected.

Immediately listed below are the video results. The second video result appears to support the program. It had around 60,000 views when I took the screenshot. That’s a significant quantity of reach compared to the examples we looked at above.

The third video outcome has much fewer views however critiques the program.

We can also see, on the information panel, that the reviews from the clinical community might not be having an extensive impact. Audiences review the program well.

Beneath the video results, we do see critiques from The Guardian and Slate. Let’s flip over to the news outcomes.

These are mostly critiques of the program released on large media platforms. Reporters are assisting researchers get their message out.

I signed in once again a few days later on, utilizing an incognito visitor Chrome web browser with my VPN switched on (United States place). There was a fascinating modification in the SERP:

It appears like Google detected the debate and the newsworthiness of the search. The video results were gone, changed by a “Leading Stories” search function that appears above the organic results.

So, what’s the takeaway here?

Archaeologists Saw A Boost From SEO With Limited, However Important, Effect

Archaeologists did see a boost from SEO on this topic. But we can see from Google results that the program is popular, and the program’s fans have a great deal of traction too.

The limited effect of this collective effort demonstrates the hurdles facing science communicators. The impact of their review appears to be a drop in the bucket compared to countless people who watched the program.

But we shouldn’t mark down the success of these scientists and educators, either.

They’re developing neighborhoods, supplying information for people who search for it, and changing minds. When you look carefully, you can plainly browse algorithms rewarding these creators for their efforts.

Interested users do discover genuine scientific research when they look into the series. The content is reaching people, and it’s motivating them to take a look at the show seriously.

This is motivating news for the overall quality of search.

I think online marketers can assist here.

SEO professionals have the knowledge and resources to assist magnify these messages. Possibly we might consider it a little bit of search social work.

More resources:

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