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

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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 invested a week trending in the worldwide top 10 on Netflix, accumulating around 24,620,000 watch hours 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 debate, and search algorithms may be satisfying good-faith critiques about the show from scientists and teachers– as some working archaeologists have actually considered the show dubious pseudoscience at best, and dangerous misinformation at worst.

The Society For American Archaeology wrote a letter to Netflix asking it to reclassify and contextualize the program, mentioning 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 role SEO plays in the debate– how scientists and science communicators provide their critiques of the program, and how audiences find them.

Browse algorithms get a great deal of reviews for how they can be utilized to spread false information.

However in this case, I have actually seen support for educators and researchers who have actually devoted to pushing back on popular pseudoscience.

Creators Rebutting “Ancient Apocalypse” Get A Boost From SEO

I first learned of the debate 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 communicated with Tweets from researchers who had actually responded and “chose to attempt and compose a fair 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 quantity 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 Armageddon: Reality Or Fiction?” had already grown to 104,000 views

. Screenshot from Buy YouTube Subscribers, December 2022 Kayleigh wasn’t the only developer to release material 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, 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 usual 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 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 information for comparison. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November

2022 He also shared the search terms the video was performing best 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 acquires 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 online search engine results pages(SERPs ). Screenshot of internal analytics of the”Archaeology Tube”Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022 The second video has extremely different data, being pressed mostly by Buy YouTube Subscribers’s browse features like recommended videos. Screenshot of internal analytics of the “Archaeology Tube” Buy YouTube Subscribers channel, November 2022

This time, Buy YouTube Subscribers seems to have acknowledged the interest in a trending subject and pressed the video appropriately. In the very first video that he made about”Ancient Apocalypse,”Dr. Farley attended to Hancock straight with a review focusing on the relationship between the theories posed in the program, and white supremacy.

In the second video, Dr. Farley focused on debunking the particular falsehoods in the show.

He informed me, “There is a MARKED distinction 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 many more favorable comments or positive criticisms. This video just spoke directly to a few of the falsehoods in the program however does not straight attend to racism or white supremacy.”

Even with the unfavorable response, the truth stays that people enjoyed and engaged with the video, as this screenshot of the video’s engagement stats 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 successful efficiency metrics are just about profiting from a trending keyword.

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

Buy YouTube Subscribers uses metadata about videos to approximate relevance, however it also utilizes user engagement signals such as watch time to evaluate the importance of videos to particular queries. Buy YouTube Subscribers’s leading ranking factor is audience satisfaction.

“History with Kayleigh” has a large following currently that most likely provided her videos an increase. However Dr. Farley does not have a large following, and the reach of his videos boils down to organic discovery.

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

Other researchers, with little and large 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 Discussion and kept in mind the appeal of the piece on Buy Twitter Verification:

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verification, November 2022

I reached out to Dr. Dibble for his viewpoint. He stated: “I have actually gotten a vast array of reactions to my thread. A lot of abuse, and plenty of appreciation. A number of individuals clearly discovered it while looking for more details on the show.

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

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

He shared an example of a Buy Twitter Verification user who went looking for information about the show while they were viewing it and appreciated the review he published on the platform:

Screenshot from Buy Twitter Verification, December 2022

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

The content he blogged about “Ancient Apocalypse” became the best carrying out on his site in a matter of days, with Google Browse comprising the clear majority of traffic.

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

General, this isn’t a huge amount of traffic. What’s interesting here is how the content about the show compares to other content by this creator, especially since the website is reasonably little.

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

“Scientists can use these tools simply as well as our pseudo-alters,” he informed me, “and frequently to better effect, due to the fact that we actually have evidence to support our claims.”

How SEO Can Be Utilized To Spread Out Misinformation

Search algorithms are hotbeds of false information.

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

Google has actually been considering false information and how finest to solve it for years.

People who pitch conspiracy theories and pseudoscience know this. They’re expert online marketers and writers, and they’re proficient at SEO.

That can make it much more difficult to interact excellent science than misinformation. Researchers have demanding jobs beyond marketing and publishing, and their conclusions are frequently tough to communicate efficiently.

They’re not trained to do it, and academia is slow to adapt to digital trends.

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

Dr. Farley stated: “By and big, I think academics have no concept how to do SEO (I’m simply 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 truly cool if our universities would assist … but I’ve found the media departments at unis are older school. If I brought this to them, they ‘d pitch a media statement to the local paper.

Our media department is fantastic and has great objectives, but by and big, they’re early in the game on utilizing social media as a media tool.”

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

When it concerns organic reach, scientists require allies.

Is Review Of “Ancient Armageddon” Having An Impact?

The outcomes don’t seem as motivating when you zoom out and have a look at the SERPs for “Ancient Armageddon.”

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

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

Instantly below are the video results. The 2nd video result appears to support the show. 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 less views but critiques the show.

We can likewise see, on the details panel, that the critiques from the scientific community might not be having a widespread impact. Audiences examine the program well.

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

These are mainly critiques of the program published on large media platforms. Journalists are helping researchers get their message out.

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

It appears like Google picked up on 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 A Boost From SEO With Limited, However Important, Effect

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

The restricted effect of this cumulative effort shows the hurdles facing science communicators. The impact of their critique appears to be a drop in the bucket compared to millions of people who watched the show.

But we shouldn’t discount the success of these scientists and teachers, either.

They’re building neighborhoods, providing details for people who look for it, and changing minds. When you look closely, you can clearly search algorithms rewarding these creators for their efforts.

Interested users do find genuine scientific research study when they check out the series. The material is reaching people, and it’s motivating them to take a look at the program critically.

This is encouraging news for the overall quality of search.

I think online marketers can assist here.

SEO professionals have the knowledge and resources to assist enhance these messages. Maybe we might consider it a little bit of search community service.

More resources:

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