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

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

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

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

But online, it’s been shrouded in controversy, and search algorithms may be satisfying good-faith critiques about the show from scientists and teachers– as some working archeologists have considered the show unsubstantiated pseudoscience at finest, and unsafe misinformation at worst.

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

However this is a story about the function SEO plays in the debate– how researchers and science communicators present their critiques of the show, and how audiences find them.

Search algorithms get a great deal of reviews for how they can be utilized to spread out misinformation.

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

Developers Rebutting “Ancient Armageddon” Get An Increase From SEO

I first learned of the controversy from Buy YouTube Subscribers developer “History With Kayleigh,” who, while not a scholastic or recognized archaeologist, produces academic videos about ancient history and historical sites.

She interacted with Tweets from researchers who had actually reacted and “chose to try and write a fair defense to the show,” as she informed me.

Kayleigh’s video about “Ancient Apocalypse” isn’t the best-performing video on her channel. Still, it was certainly carrying out above the average of her recent 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 very first” Ancient Apocalypse: Fact 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 material about the Netflix series. Dr. Bill Farley, an archaeologist and associate professor at Southern Connecticut State University who runs a

little Buy YouTube Subscribers channel about archaeology in his leisure time, made one of the earliest Buy YouTube Subscribers videos critiquing Hancock and the show. And while his reach is much smaller sized, his videos about”Ancient Apocalypse” blew up. 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 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 third of that external traffic was from Google.

Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archeology 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 “Archeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022

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

2022 He likewise shared the search terms the video was performing best for within Buy YouTube Subscribers search. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 I signed in once again with his channel on December 5th. Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 This very first video still gains most of its

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

and filling up search engine results pages(SERPs ). Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archeology Tube”Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 The 2nd video has hugely different stats, being pressed mainly by Buy YouTube Subscribers’s browse functions like suggested videos. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022

This time, Buy YouTube Subscribers appears to have recognized the interest in a trending subject and pressed the video accordingly. In the very first video that he made about”Ancient Archaeology, “Dr. Farley attended to Hancock directly with a review focusing on the relationship in between the theories positioned in the program, and white supremacy.

In the 2nd video, Dr. Farley concentrated on exposing the particular frauds in the show.

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

The second video likewise has some remarks like this, but many more positive remarks or useful criticisms. This video simply spoke directly to some of the frauds in the show however does not directly address racism or white supremacy.”

Even with the negative reaction, the fact remains that people enjoyed and engaged with the video, as this screenshot of the video’s engagement data reveals.

Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archeology Tube”Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 One could argue that this is a fluke– and that these relatively successful performance metrics are simply 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 approximate importance, however it also utilizes user engagement signals such as watch time to evaluate the importance of videos to specific questions. Buy YouTube Subscribers’s leading ranking element is viewer complete satisfaction.

“History with Kayleigh” has a large following currently that most likely offered her videos a boost. But Dr. Farley does not have a big following, and the reach of his videos boils down to natural discovery.

People Look For Information 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 rebuttal for The Conversation and kept in mind the popularity of the piece on Buy Twitter Verified:

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verified, November 2022

I reached out to Dr. Dibble for his viewpoint. He mentioned: “I’ve gotten a large range of responses to my thread. Lots of abuse, and a lot of appreciation. A number of people clearly discovered it while searching for more information on the program.

Some, particularly within the very first week of release, discussed they were browsing Buy Twitter Verified to find reactions to it either before seeing or mid-watch.

Individuals who mentioned finding the thread through a search were all delighted for rapidly getting a clearer context for the program.”

He shared an example of a Buy Twitter Verified user who went searching for details about the program while they were seeing it and valued the review he posted on the platform:

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verified, December 2022

Dr. Andre Costopoulos, an archaeologist at the University Of Alberta, wrote about the show on his individual WordPress blog site 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 website in a matter of days, with Google Browse comprising the clear bulk of traffic.

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

Overall, this isn’t a substantial amount of traffic. What’s fascinating here is how the content about the show compares to other content by this creator, especially due to the fact that the website is reasonably little.

Dr. Costopoulos believes that researchers can reach audiences hungry for info if they discover the tools.

“Researchers can use these tools just as well as our pseudo-alters,” he told me, “and often to much better effect, since we actually have evidence to support our claims.”

How SEO Can Be Used To Spread Misinformation

Browse algorithms are hotbeds of false information.

Dissemination of conspiracies and false information has actually been a hot topic on various platforms, from Buy YouTube Subscribers to Buy Facebook Verified.

Google has been reckoning with misinformation and how best to resolve it for years.

People who peddle conspiracy theories and pseudoscience understand this. They’re expert online marketers and storytellers, and they’re good at SEO.

That can make it far more difficult to communicate excellent science than misinformation. Researchers have demanding jobs beyond marketing and publishing, and their conclusions are typically hard to communicate effectively.

They’re not trained to do it, and academic community is sluggish to adapt to digital trends.

That leads the way for a conspiracy theory to remove with little more than a great story and great marketing.

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

It would be actually cool if our universities would assist … but I have actually found the media departments at unis are very old school. If I brought this to them, they ‘d pitch a media statement to the regional paper.

Our media department is fantastic and has excellent intents, however by and large, they’re early in the game on utilizing social networks as a media tool.”

So we have a quandary where researchers, who aren’t always trained in interactions and marketing, take on versus expert marketers of concepts. And they’re doing it with individual enthusiasm jobs on top of their existing jobs.

When it pertains to organic reach, scientists need allies.

Is Review Of “Ancient Apocalypse” Having An Effect?

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

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

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

Instantly listed below are the video results. The second video outcome 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 3rd video result has much fewer views but reviews the show.

We can also see, on the details panel, that the reviews from the scientific community might not be having an extensive effect. Audiences examine the program well.

Below 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 released on large media platforms. Reporters are assisting researchers get their message out.

I checked in once again a few days later on, using an anonymous visitor Chrome browser with my VPN switched on (United States area). There was an intriguing change in the SERP:

It appears like Google detected the controversy and the newsworthiness of the search. The video results were gone, replaced by a “Top 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, Impact

Archaeologists did see an increase from SEO on this subject. 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 restricted impact of this collective effort demonstrates the obstacles facing science communicators. The effect of their review seems to be a drop in the bucket compared to millions of individuals who viewed the show.

However we shouldn’t discount the success of these researchers and educators, either.

They’re constructing neighborhoods, providing details for individuals who look for it, and altering minds. When you look carefully, you can clearly browse algorithms rewarding these creators for their efforts.

Interested users do find genuine clinical research when they check out the series. The content is reaching people, and it’s inspiring them to analyze the show seriously.

This is motivating news for the general quality of search.

I think online marketers can assist here.

SEO experts have the understanding and resources to help magnify these messages. Perhaps we might consider it a little bit of search social work.

More resources:

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