Posts tagged with "user"

How Conspiracists Dominate YouTube Climate Content

The geoengineering of consent: how conspiracists dominate YouTube climate content

Most YouTube videos relating to climate change prevention oppose scientific consensus and hijack technical terms to appear credible, says study using YouTube to learn about climate science will expose you to video content that mostly opposes worldwide scientific consensus.

That’s the finding of a new study published in Frontiers in Communication, which also reveals that some scientific terms, such as geoengineering, have been ‘hijacked’ by conspiracy theorists so that searches provide entirely non-scientific video content. Scientists could counteract this by forming alliances with influential YouTubers, politicians and those in popular culture, to ensure scientifically accurate video content reaches the widest-possible audience.

“Searching YouTube for climate-science and climate-engineering-related terms finds fewer than half of the videos represent mainstream scientific views,” says study author Dr. Joachim Allgaier, Senior Researcher at the RWTH Aachen University. “It’s alarming to find that the majority of videos propagate conspiracy theories about climate science and technology.”

Nearly 2 billion logged-in users – half the world online – visit YouTube every month, and research has shown that users see it as a platform for learning about science, health and technology.

Climate conspiracists

Allgaier wanted to know if the information YouTube users found, when searching for scientific information on climate change and climate modification, represented scientifically accurate views.

“So far, research has focused on the most-watched videos, checking their scientific accuracy, but this doesn’t tell us what an average internet user will find, as the results are influenced by previous search and watch histories,” reports Allgaier. “To combat this, I used the anonymization tool TOR to avoid personalization of the results.”

Employing ten climate change-related search terms, Allgaier analyzed 200 videos about climate change and climate modification topics. He found that the majority of these videos opposed the worldwide scientific consensus, as detailed by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Most videos propagated the so-called “chemtrails” conspiracy theory, which is a belief that the condensation trails of airplanes are purposefully enriched with harmful substances to modify the weather, control human populations, or for biological or chemical warfare. Scientists have clearly shown there is no evidence for such a large-scale secret atmospheric spraying program.

Geoengineering has been hijacked

Alarmingly, Allgaier found that the conspiracy theorists have ‘hijacked’ some relatively recent scientific terms by using them to describe their worldview of a global conspiracy. In fact, ‘chemtrailers’, as they are known, explicitly advise their followers to use scientific terms in their content, so that they are not immediately identified as conspiracy theorists.

“Within the scientific community, ‘geoengineering’ describes technology with the potential to deal with the serious consequences of climate change, if we don’t manage to reduce greenhouse gases successfully. For example, greenhouse gas removal, solar radiation management or massive forestation to absorb carbon dioxide,” explains Allgaier. “However, people searching for ‘geoengineering’ or ‘climate modification’ on YouTube won’t find any information on these topics in the way they are discussed by scientists and engineers. Instead, searching for these terms results in videos that leave users exposed to entirely non-scientific video content.”

Allgaier also questions YouTube search algorithms – does its business model direct traffic towards videos of dubious scientific content? He found some of the conspiracy videos being monetized by the users via adverts or the sale of merchandise with conspiracy-theory motives.

“The way YouTube search algorithms work is not very transparent. We should be aware this powerful artificial intelligence is already making decisions for us, for example, if you choose to use ‘auto-play’. I think YouTube should take responsibility to ensure its users will find high-quality information if they search for scientific and biomedical terms, instead of being exposed to doubtful conspiracy videos,” argues Allgaier.

Scientists and YouTubers unite!

To counter the non-scientific content on YouTube, Allgaier, who recently spoke at the World Conference of Science Journalists about his work, suggests scientists and science communicators should take YouTube seriously as a platform for sharing scientific information.

“YouTube has an enormous reach as an information channel, and some of the popular science YouTubers are doing an excellent job at communicating complex subjects and reaching new audiences. Scientists could form alliances with science-communicators, politicians and those in popular culture in order to reach out to the widest-possible audience. They should speak out publicly about their research and be transparent in order to keep established trustful relationships with citizens and society.”

Kiip’s CEO: March Update

March has been Madness! (In the best of ways)

We’re kiiping busy, and hope you have been too. This year is already flying by and we’ve got so much to share!

#PressforProgress & #feff

Kiip is dedicated to supporting and growing an equal and diverse workforce and we know that means having an open and honest conversation about how we can do better. Take a look at what our leaders here at Kiip have to say about progress in 2018.

Announcements

&#feff; Kiip Gets Into the Data & Audiences Business

Audiences

We’ve been hard at work. Since we launched our Moments Table, many brands have asked if they can use our data more broadly. We finally launched our audiences into (initially) LiveRamp Data Store and now I am happy to report that you can buy moments audiences decoupled with our media.

Surveys

On top of this, we rounded out our data suite with our Surveys product. Too often as marketers we are faced with limited 3rd party data options (largely cookie based or too probabilistic). We decided to use our mobile-first positioning and engagement unit in our ads to create a survey product where the marketer can simply ask the consumer (millions of them). With these survey responses we can create seed audiences activated on Kiip (or elsewhere as aforementioned) or simply qualify the success of your campaign. The possibilities are endless.

Helpful Content

To help further hammer home the point of why we went into the data business, we put together some helpful content. An interesting tidbit: the VP of Netflix started quite a stir in 2016 when he suggested that demographic data was a thing of the past, or rather headed to the trash. I believe that marketing is heading from a segment-based approach to a signal-based approach. Here’s a post from one of our brilliant strategist Lauren, on how best to ensure that your audience data is used effectively and sourced transparently.

Okay so now you’ve read all about how to avoid the pitfalls (in the post linked above), are you ready to talk strategy and leave generic data in the past? Schedule a complimentary session today and learn more about how our audience targeting stands out from the crowd.

The Summer Forecast

Every month we release mobile app behavior trends called M.I.C. drops. These help our media buying customers to get ahead of trends and know how to buy more effectively based on what people are going to be spending time doing. The March M.I.C. drop stats are in and it’s sunny with a chance of 2 in 3 teens working this summer. This summer polls 55% of teens working and earning over $1K. We’ve collected the data, now you can make accurate predictions on what they’ll be spending that money on and when. See for yourself how best to reach a teen audience this summer!

Case Study Center

    • We’ve been working with the app store’s most popular free fitness app for a while now: Sweatcoin. Here’s our case study with how we worked with them to monetize and engage their most active users.
  • Here’s another case study about a lifestyle app that’s all about beauty and selfies. You wouldn’t believe how many people love this app.

 

 

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