Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Google Strikes Blow For Truth, Lie-Peddlers Horrified

Posted by Phoenix Woman on March 4, 2015

The biggest problem with the internet is that most well-heeled and/or well-organized purveyors of garbage can game search engines so that their sites are the first ones found in most internet searches on a topic.

It looks like Google has a solution — and if so, this is the best news I’ve heard so far this year:

Instead of counting incoming links, the system – which is not yet live – counts the number of incorrect facts within a page. “A source that has few false facts is considered to be trustworthy,” says the team (arxiv.org/abs/1502.03519v1). The score they compute for each page is its Knowledge-Based Trust score.

The software works by tapping into the Knowledge Vault, the vast store of facts that Google has pulled off the internet. Facts the web unanimously agrees on are considered a reasonable proxy for truth. Web pages that contain contradictory information are bumped down the rankings.

In other words, no longer will well-funded denialist websites be the first things one sees when Googling for information on topics like climate change or vaccines.

This of course is a particularly powerful blow to conservative crapmeisters, which is of course why they are screaming over it like vampires in a holy-water shower:

Google: Custodians of Truth (TPC: Custodians of Craptastic Site Design)

Google and Obama to Decide All Truth Online (Because of course Google and Obama walk hand in hand, according to these mokes.)

Google Gives New Meaning to “Orwellian” (These guys give new meaning to “stupid”.)

Google: New Self-Righteous Source of Truth (This site really pushes the weird relativism conservatives have towards reality, which is hilarious considering how much they love to attack ‘moral relativism’.)

And just to be fair, a wacko libertarian-lefty commenter whining because he knows what a blow this is to the anti-vaccine grift.

Awwww. Dipwads won’t be able to pull the old trick of setting up websites that link to other crapmeister sites just to game the site rankings of most search engines.

Whine away, grifters. Your tears taste so sweet.

4 Responses to “Google Strikes Blow For Truth, Lie-Peddlers Horrified”

  1. It will create a higher quality of rightwing propaganda. When this takes hold, a lot of those penny a word online writing and editing outfits will suddenly have decent paying jobs for writers able to use established facts while undermining them in some way that tricks Google.

    Programs that can spot liars who use the truth haven’t been invented yet. (I hope.)

  2. Charles II said

    Yeah, I have to agree with Mark. The grifters will create hundreds of pages with statements like “apples are fruit,” “bats are mammals,” etc. and then one Big Lie. They’ll probably bury all the facts in invisible text just to get out the Big Lie.

    But at least this will be the Wingnut Full Employment Act.

    I do have my questions about the censorship of matters where consensus can change. One of the concerns that I have long had is that vaccines could generate antibodies to human proteins. Over a long period of time, that could trigger autoimmunity. Some years ago, for example, it is hypothesized that there is a cross-reaction between M-protein and myosin, causing heart valve problems in rheumatic fever. And if a vaccine against streptococcus were developed, the vaccine itself might trigger the same autoimmune reaction. So, if the “Knowledge Vault” has in it the “fact” that “vaccines are safe,” it would downrate legitimate research into safety problems with vaccines. The pharmaceutical companies will be very happy.

    This kind of thing is worst in fields where truth is more difficult to ascertain. In the economics profession, for example, it’s widely believed that Keynesian stimulus is counterproductive. This is one of the Big Lies that money from wealthy people has propagated. Only guys like Paul Krugman are willing to argue the contrary. But Krugman is right, and the rest of the economics profession is wrong.

    What Google is doing amounts to consensus building. Unfortunately, the reason SIFUAB is because the consensus is wrong.

    I don’t think there’s any lasting answer to web pollution except to put the polluters out of business.

  3. jo6pacjo6pac said

    Yes it would be nice to remove the liars but at the same time it sounds, looks, and bitterly taste like censorship.

  4. DMC said

    At least the liars will have to “work for it”. That will knock a vast number of sites into the lower strata of search results. Don’t think of it as censorship. Think of it as improving the signal to noise ratio.

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