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

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

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

Netflix provides authority to the program by classifying it as a “docuseries,” and IMDB categorizes it as a “documentary” and “history.”

However online, it’s been shrouded in controversy, and search algorithms might be gratifying good-faith reviews about the show from scientists and educators– as some working archaeologists have considered the show unsubstantiated pseudoscience at finest, and hazardous misinformation 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 show’s “false claims,” and the associations that the theories presented have with “racist, white supremacist ideologies.”

However this is a story about the function SEO plays in the controversy– how researchers and science communicators provide their critiques of the program, and how audiences discover them.

Browse algorithms get a lot of critiques for how they can be utilized to spread out false information.

However in this case, I have actually seen assistance for educators and scientists who have actually committed to pressing back on popular pseudoscience.

Developers Rebutting “Ancient Armageddon” Get A Boost From SEO

I initially found out of the debate from Buy YouTube Subscribers creator “History With Kayleigh,” who, while not an academic or recognized archaeologist, develops educational videos about ancient history and archaeological sites.

She communicated with Tweets from scientists who had reacted and “decided to attempt and write a fair rebuttal to the show,” as she told me.

Kayleigh’s video about “Ancient Apocalypse” isn’t the best-performing video on her channel. Still, it was definitely performing above the average of her current releases in a short 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 second video, and the first” Ancient Apocalypse: Reality Or Fiction?” had actually already grown to 104,000 views

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

small Buy YouTube Subscribers channel about archaeology in his spare time, made one of the earliest Buy YouTube Subscribers videos critiquing Hancock and the program. And while his reach is much smaller sized, his videos about”Ancient Armageddon” 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 first video about Graham Hancock drew more traffic than typical from Google searches. The listed below screenshots are from November 22nd, when

the video was still around 5,000 views. For that specific video, the” external”traffic source was around 28 %, compared to his channel average of around 10%. A third 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 information for contrast. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November

2022 He also shared the search terms the video was performing finest for within Buy YouTube Subscribers search. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube “Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 I signed in again with his channel on December 5th. Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 This very first video still acquires the majority 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 getting the story

and filling search engine results pages(SERPs ). Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archaeology Tube”Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 The 2nd video has hugely different statistics, being pressed mainly 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 seems to have recognized the interest in a trending topic and pushed the video accordingly. In the very first video that he made about”Ancient Armageddon,”Dr. Farley dealt with Hancock directly with a critique concentrating on the relationship in between the theories presented in the show, and white supremacy.

In the 2nd video, Dr. Farley concentrated on debunking the particular fallacies in the show.

He informed me, “There is a MARKED distinction in the reactions to the 2 videos. In video # 1, I point out white supremacy and the history of Atlantean misconceptions with racism. That video has … hundreds of disparaging remarks [that] are misogynistic, racist, and homophobic.

The second video also has some comments like this, but much more favorable comments or constructive criticisms. This video simply spoke straight to a few of the falsehoods in the program however does not straight address racism or white supremacy.”

Even with the negative reaction, the fact stays that people enjoyed 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– which these apparently effective efficiency metrics are merely about profiting from a trending keyword.

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

Buy YouTube Subscribers utilizes metadata about videos to estimate significance, but it also uses user engagement signals such as watch time to evaluate the significance of videos to specific queries. Buy YouTube Subscribers’s top ranking aspect is viewer satisfaction.

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

People Look For Details About “Ancient Apocalypse” And Discover Review

Other researchers, with small and big followings, have also seen abnormally high traffic about this subject on other platforms.

Dr. Flint Dibble, an archaeologist at Cardiff University, composed a defense for The Discussion and noted the appeal of the piece on Twitter:

Screenshot from Twitter, November 2022

I connected to Dr. Dibble for his viewpoint. He specified: “I have actually gotten a wide range of actions to my thread. Lots of abuse, and plenty of praise. Several individuals clearly discovered it while searching for more details on the program.

Some, particularly within the first week of release, discussed they were searching Twitter to find responses to it either prior to viewing or mid-watch.

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

He shared an example of a Twitter user who went searching for info about the program while they were watching it and valued the critique he published on the platform:

Screenshot from Twitter, December 2022

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

The material he discussed “Ancient Apocalypse” ended up being the best carrying out on his site in a matter of days, with Google Search comprising the clear bulk of traffic.

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

Overall, this isn’t a substantial quantity of traffic. What’s intriguing here is how the material about the program compares to other content by this creator, especially due to the fact that the site is fairly small.

Dr. Costopoulos thinks that researchers can reach audiences hungry for details if they find out the tools.

“Scientists can utilize these tools simply as well as our pseudo-alters,” he told me, “and typically to better effect, due to the fact that we in fact have evidence to back up our claims.”

How SEO Can Be Utilized To Spread Out False Information

Browse algorithms are hotbeds of misinformation.

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

Google has been reckoning with false information and how best to solve it for years.

Individuals who market conspiracy theories and pseudoscience understand this. They’re skilled marketers and writers, and they’re proficient at SEO.

That can make it much more challenging to communicate excellent science than misinformation. Scientists have requiring tasks outside of marketing and publishing, and their conclusions are often tough to communicate efficiently.

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

That paves the way for a conspiracy theory to remove with bit more than a good story and good marketing.

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

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

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

So we have a dilemma where researchers, who aren’t necessarily trained in interactions and marketing, face off versus professional online marketers of ideas. And they’re doing it with personal enthusiasm jobs on top of their existing tasks.

When it comes to natural reach, researchers require allies.

Is Review Of “Ancient Apocalypse” Having An Effect?

The results don’t seem as encouraging when you zoom out and take a look at the SERPs for “Ancient Armageddon.”

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

The results here are a bit of a mixed bag. The first result is simply a link to the show. That’s to be anticipated.

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

The third video outcome has much fewer views but reviews the show.

We can also see, on the information panel, that the reviews from the clinical community might not be having a prevalent impact. Audiences examine the program well.

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

These are mostly critiques of the program published on big media platforms. Journalists are assisting scientists get their message out.

I signed in again a couple of days later, using an anonymous guest Chrome internet browser with my VPN switched on (United States area). There was an intriguing change in the SERP:

It appears like Google picked up on the controversy and the newsworthiness of the search. The video results were gone, changed by a “Leading Stories” search feature that appears above the organic results.

So, what’s the takeaway here?

Archaeologists Saw An Increase From SEO With Limited, But Important, Effect

Archaeologists did see an increase from SEO on this topic. However we can see from Google results that the program is popular, and the program’s supporters have a lot of traction too.

The limited impact of this collective effort shows the obstacles dealing with science communicators. The effect of their review seems to be a drop in the bucket compared to countless people who watched the show.

However we should not discount the success of these researchers and teachers, either.

They’re constructing communities, supplying information for individuals who look for it, and altering minds. When you look carefully, you can clearly browse algorithms rewarding these developers for their efforts.

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

This is motivating news for the general quality of search.

I think online marketers can assist here.

SEO experts have the knowledge and resources to help enhance these messages. Possibly we could consider it a bit of search social work.

More resources:

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