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

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

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

Netflix provides authority to the show 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 gratifying good-faith critiques about the program from scientists and teachers– as some working archeologists have deemed the show dubious pseudoscience at finest, and dangerous false information at worst.

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

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

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

But in this case, I’ve seen support for educators and scientists who have actually devoted to pressing back on popular pseudoscience.

Creators Rebutting “Ancient Apocalypse” Get A Boost From SEO

I first discovered of the controversy from Buy YouTube Subscribers creator “History With Kayleigh,” who, while not a scholastic or recognized archaeologist, creates instructional videos about ancient history and archaeological sites.

She communicated with Tweets from scientists who had responded and “chose to attempt and write a reasonable rebuttal 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 certainly performing 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 released a 2nd video, and the 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 material about the Netflix series. Dr. Costs Farley, an archaeologist and associate professor at Southern Connecticut State University who runs a

small Buy YouTube Subscribers channel about archaeology in his free 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 usual 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”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 total channel information for comparison. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November

2022 He also shared the search terms the video was carrying out finest for within Buy YouTube Subscribers search. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archeology 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 first video still gains the majority 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 picking up the story

and filling up online 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 statistics, being pushed mostly by Buy YouTube Subscribers’s browse features like recommended 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 pushed the video appropriately. In the first video that he made about”Ancient Archaeology, “Dr. Farley addressed Hancock straight with a review concentrating on the relationship in between the theories positioned in the program, and white supremacy.

In the 2nd video, Dr. Farley focused on unmasking the specific fallacies in the program.

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

The 2nd video also has some comments like this, but a lot more favorable remarks or constructive criticisms. This video simply spoke straight to a few of the fallacies in the show but does not directly deal with bigotry or white supremacy.”

Even with the negative reaction, the reality remains that individuals seen and engaged with the video, as this screenshot of the video’s engagement stats reveals.

Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archeology Tube”Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 One might argue that this is a fluke– which these relatively effective performance metrics are simply about capitalizing on a trending keyword.

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

Buy YouTube Subscribers utilizes metadata about videos to approximate relevance, but it also utilizes user engagement signals such as watch time to check the significance of videos to specific inquiries. Buy YouTube Subscribers’s top ranking element is viewer complete satisfaction.

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

Individuals Search For Info About “Ancient Armageddon” And Discover Critique

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

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

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verified, November 2022

I connected to Dr. Dibble for his viewpoint. He stated: “I’ve gotten a wide range of reactions to my thread. Plenty of abuse, and a lot of appreciation. A number of individuals clearly discovered it while looking for more details on the show.

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

The people who pointed out finding the thread through a search were all pleased for rapidly getting a clearer context for the show.”

He shared an example of a Buy Twitter Verified user who went trying to find details about the show 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, blogged about the program on his individual WordPress blog site and shared his blog analytics with me in late November.

The material he discussed “Ancient Armageddon” ended up being the best carrying out on his website in a matter of days, with Google Browse making up 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 intriguing here is how the content about the show compares to other material by this creator, particularly because the website is relatively small.

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

“Researchers can utilize these tools just as well as our pseudo-alters,” he told me, “and typically to better impact, because we really have evidence to back up our claims.”

How SEO Can Be Utilized To Spread Misinformation

Search 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 Verified.

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

Individuals who pitch conspiracy theories and pseudoscience understand this. They’re expert online marketers and storytellers, and they’re proficient at SEO.

That can make it far more hard to communicate good science than false information. Scientists have demanding tasks beyond marketing and publishing, and their conclusions are typically hard to communicate efficiently.

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

That paves the way for a conspiracy theory to take off with little more than an excellent story and great marketing.

Dr. Farley stated: “By and big, I believe academics have no idea how to do SEO (I’m simply stumbling around in the dark myself), and false information folks are much, far better at it. Academics, honestly, do not have the time to learn this things.

It would be really cool if our universities would assist … but 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 local newspaper.

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

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

When it concerns organic reach, scientists need allies.

Is Review Of “Ancient Apocalypse” Having An Impact?

The results don’t 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 made certain my VPN was switched on (United States area), then searched for [ancient armageddon]

The results here are a little bit of a variety. The first result is simply a link to the program. That’s to be anticipated.

Right away listed below are the video results. The 2nd video result appears to support the program. It had around 60,000 views when I took the screenshot. That’s a substantial quantity of reach compared to the examples we took a look at above.

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

We can also see, on the info panel, that the reviews from the scientific neighborhood might not be having an extensive impact. Audiences examine the show well.

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

These are primarily critiques of the program released on big media platforms. Reporters are helping scientists get their message out.

I checked in again a couple of days later, utilizing an anonymous visitor Chrome internet browser with my VPN switched on (United States place). There was an intriguing modification in the SERP:

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

So, what’s the takeaway here?

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

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

The limited result of this cumulative effort demonstrates the difficulties dealing with science communicators. The effect of their critique appears to be a drop in the pail compared to countless people who enjoyed the show.

But we should not discount the success of these researchers and educators, either.

They’re constructing communities, supplying information for people who search for it, and changing minds. When you look closely, you can clearly search algorithms rewarding these developers for their efforts.

Interested users do find legitimate scientific research study when they check out 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 total quality of search.

I think online marketers can assist here.

SEO professionals have the understanding and resources to assist enhance these messages. Possibly we could consider it a bit of search social work.

More resources:

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