Even more amusing - but oddly, rather related - to the last tee hee is the news that the denialosphere is panicking over Google Truth (h/t NS and, apparently, almost everyone else). I'm not sure why they are bothering - its only a research project.
Amusing panics are available from JoNova or AW (via Sou). From Sou, I discover that you can check your page rank. I'm a 6; woo. Scienceblogs as a whole gets 8. RC gets 7. Humble Sou is a 5. WUWT gets a humiliating 3; JN an even more humiliating N/A.
At one time the Google search engine itself was only a research project.
Don't panic, but some would have it that Earth itself is just a research project.
Nothing is more alarming then encountering a fact in a blogosphere post- readers detecting any found creeping into mine are implored to send me a post card or call the exterminators at their earliest convenience.
[This is a wise policy -W]
Russell, there is obviously a secret app that prevents facts from being mistakenly added to web content. Perhaps if you were nicer to AW or JoN they'd email you a copy. They certainly make use of it.
I did hear the rumor, but had not realized how much fear it provoked. The Jo Nova post and comments are lovely. That is how sheer panic sounds like.
It should be possible to implement the fact filter in a way that it automatically turns on or off. I guess Google already does that with sex sites; you hardly get any of such links anymore nowadays. If you do not want to hear the truth, you can just add: WUWT, Jo Nova or moon landing.
What I had also not realized is that the facts to a large part come from Wikipedia. This means that the evil Nazi WC, the spin master of the liberal global warming section of Wikipedia, in future also determines the Google search results. Your evilness becomes even larger. :=)
That could also be a problem. That could mean that keeping Wikipedia clean becomes harder.
[I notice that defns, etc, often come from wiki. If they "trust" it then yes, that becomes amusing but also a temptation to the Dork Side. I've always been rather surprised how scared they are of touching wiki - they can mount thousands to win the bloggies, but not to edit wiki. Possibly doing more than just clicking a button is beyond them? -W]
This "problem" from FoxNews should be no problem:
“It could make it more difficult for bright young people to bring about the next revolution in science. After all, most of today's established science came about because someone challenged the herd mentality of yesterday,” he [University of Maryland computer science professor Jim Purtilo] said.
First of all scientists searching for information on a new theory would use very specific search terms and thus likely still get the same pages as before. And the filter would make it easier to search for good information. Not getting links to WUWT will only help bright young people. Contrary information that is wrong does not help in developing good new theories. Furthermore, also a new theory needs to be embedded in a network of ideas, theories, facts and data that are right. Thus a page on a new idea, if serious, would contain a lot of "true facts".
[I don't think that any of them understand that to challenge the "herd mentality" you have to actually understand it; its not enough to just dislike it -W]
The Nova bit has to be a classic bumf. “Consider how many Bloggies the skeptics won compared to the officially approved competition,” is the only nod to quantification, and absolutely supports the consensus position, the exact thing against which denialratti have been flogging for how many years now? And how much more explicit does one need to be in targeting a conspiracy prone readership. Then, a recall of my few brief forays sales is accompanied with my complete amazement at the seeming endless amount of flattery that could be troweled on.
And the PS to vote early and often just couldn’t be more artlessly endearing.
Your base are belong to us.
Too funny. Can you provide a link for page ranks. Thanks
[Hmm, I'd intended to link to Sou (now done) who found a site (now linked) but the one she provided was https://www.prchecker.net/ -W]
When I go to Wikipedia (as I do so all too often), say for example this:
The next thing I do is this (Talk page):
That one has like 45 archives (and counting), so I basically know that the subject matter is somewhat controversial to, at least, two groups of people.
[Those are indeed the things to check; what you're missing is what you should conclude. Knowing its controversial isn't terribly interesting; what you want to know is, is it "right". So the last step in the analysis is: anything like that, with so much talk, that isn't actively being fought over (check the *recent* history) and isn't protected is probably about right. That's if you're doing meta-analysis. If you're doing actual analysis, you should verify that the statements in the article are indeed supported by its references -W]
There are also opposite cases, where there are little to no comments on the talk page, but you 'know' certain things about the subject, from other RS that are not included. Those types of subjects appear to be written by the specific individual themselves, so it comes an no great surprise that certain 'facts' are omitted.
As I mentioned in the other thread, when I do a very targeted search (usually with some historical context), on something being spewed at WTFUWT?, I have to start by filtering out specific Deniersville sites:
Now, if you had that search ~two weeks ago, the Google search engine would turned up a lot of sites from Deniersville in the 1st few pages (considering that they were writing like one post per day).
I don't know if this is an actual documented strategy to game the Google search engine results via the popularity metric, but as Willard Anthony Watts states at WTFUWT? his blog is "The world’s most viewed site on global warming and climate change” So it is fairly clear that this strategy can work on an uninformed newbie searching the web (add in cultural cognition/ideology and people can 'find a virtual home' rather quickly).
[Those are indeed the things to check; what you’re missing is what you should conclude. Knowing its controversial isn’t terribly interesting; what you want to know is, is it “right”. So the last step in the analysis is: anything like that, with so much talk, that isn’t actively being fought over (check the *recent* history) and isn’t protected is probably about right. That’s if you’re doing meta-analysis. If you’re doing actual analysis, you should verify that the statements in the article are indeed supported by its references -W]
I often use Wikipedia as my starting point. I then look at the references, to find even more references and then newer (and improved?) references elsewhere with regards to the subject matter.
Is the Impact Factor metric for a Bloggie microcitations or millicites per coauthor?
JCR neds to know., and so come to think of it, does the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.
I have praised Anthony Watts many times before, he is very good in PR. “The world’s most viewed site on global warming and climate change” is just what the journalists like. Since a few months ago the independent counters have been removed, that at least provided some additional information, all you need to be the "most viewed site" is a computer with internet connection that automatically loads your blog.
Or do you know of any evidence for the claim?
Well I'm no expert (remember I'm the drive by, love to see a train wreck, type of person, so I go there at least daily), but I believe Willard Anthony Watts has written several dozen blog posts proclaiming victory in the popularity department. Most of those are based on Alexa rankings versus other climate science blogs, usually against real climate science blogs.
His WTFUWT? commentators frequently bring up this canard in 'debating' with others as if it really matters wrt a specific scientific fact (it doesn't, but then again Watts is trying rather very hard to misinform people or draw those people in that, at least initially, don't have a strong opinion on the whole AGW issue (did I just say AGW, there I go bashing humanity again)).
Now Climate Etc. might be able to beat WATTS if Curry could copy/paste like a dozen posts per day (with her ever wordy "Judy SayZ' section needed for that 'I ate too much' feeling). Don't see that happening. But if you are going for maximum posts per day, then Steve 'Real Sciency' Goddard is the go to person in that department, his blog is ranked far below Hell AFAIK, so posts per day isn't the 'winning' ingredient alone, that's for sure.
Remember, at the end of the day, this isn't about the science, it's really about cons piracy thinking and gathering others into thinking that way.
That's all that Deniersville exists for, to sow the seeds of doubt.
I tend to believe the claim of WTFUWT? being the most popular something or most viewed something.
That is all.
I trust Anthony Watts more when it comes to climate change than his own traffic since he celebrated a huge increase in his traffic, which was actually the introduction of the Alexa toolbar. Alexa rewards webmasters for using their spybar with higher rankings. That there was no spike in traffic would have been visible to Watts in his Wordpress statistics, while he might honestly not understand climate change.
Another metric is Facebook Likes. Climate Progress is around 190K, Skeptical Science around 80K, Watts Up With That around 10K and Climate Depot around 1K. I suspect WattsUp fans and fans of similar sites have a higher percentage of motivated individuals responsive to various suggestions to do things like game the Bloggies.
Seems like google are doing fairly good at filtering out the rubbish already. Some google searches on a bunch of generic terms such as Arctic Ice, melting glaciers etc finds generally wikipedia and authorative scientific sources near the top. Skeptical Science is also often in the top 5 as well. There are a reasonable number of skepticle news articles on the front page from stuff like Huffington Post, although not in all searches I did. Realclimate popped up rarely, and WUWT was only once on the front page for 'Hurricane trends', and Jo Nova seemed to pop up more often, but not usually on the first page. Even 'Climategate' saw wikipedia and Sketpical Science at number 1 and 2 and no WUWT on the front page, although a lot of hostile news articles and JN made it to page 1 of that search.
Although google does personalise its search results based on past history, so this may reflect my personal biases more than the internet reality.
Site,Global Rank,Country Rank,Country
All blogs of mitigation sceptics improved their statistics in Alexa when Watts introduced the Alexa spybar.
Also without spybar, Alexa is very unreliable. Fits to the tendency of mitigation sceptics to prefer the least reliable data sources.
"All blogs of mitigation sceptics improved their statistics in Alexa when Watts introduced the Alexa spybar."
Historical proof? Or is it simply something you just sort of made up?
"Fits to the tendency of mitigation sceptics to prefer the least reliable data sources."
For rather obvious reasons, no comment.
I'm quite sure you've convinced yourself of whatever it is that you think is going on.
That would suggest or appear or seem to be called something, sounds almost like denial or a con piracy theory if you were to ask me.
My irony meter just went off. That only happens when it hits 11 on a scale of 10.
[How do you reconcile this with your assertion of "no comment", just above? -W]
Your own link to your own analysis was kind of not very good IMHO. Perhaps you should stay within your own area of expertise? I only suggest doing so, as I don't see you as a SME in the areas of marketing and advertising (note your own ranking above).
Your new link directly above also appears to be suspect by the authors own admissions.
Site,Global Rank,Country Rank,Country
If you really want to make a rock solid argument, then please show that Alexa is off by at least an order of magnitude. IMHO, I don't think it is.
On this matter we disagree.
That is all.
[How do you reconcile this with your assertion of “no comment”, just above? -W]
I don't know. I was referring only to the direct quote above my no comment quote (which I guess, since I put words there, means something, like "comment noted", not quite sure what VV's comment implies, or whom it might be directed towards, I can only hazard a guess).
Just redact the whole comment, or whatever parts have crossed the line, like right after the "no comment" section.
You can see in Alexa that at the same time WUWT introduced the spybar, all mitigation sceptical blogs got higher Alexa rankings.
For me it is progress to have a ranking. :) If I am in desperate need, I know how to get more readers. Judith Curry showed the way. Different people have different aims and values. For now, I prefer to be able to look myself into the eyes.
WC , JM & VV should be encouraged to apply a little dimensional analysis to all these humongous hit numbers:
In the case of WUWT, and the other high scoring Rejectionist sites the number of Anomalously Interested Parties -- the repeat commenters , ( ten to the two or three) is clearly incommensurate with the fraction of the population the raw hit scores sugest ( ten to the seven or eight )
It seems intrinsically implausible that impassioned laymen should vastly outnumber climate scientists without advertising as a dominant cultural force on either side,
If you feel indignation at being asked how many people who lived and died in the 20th century felt exisitentially threatened by the delta T they experienced in their lifetimes, might you represent the problem of social construction in this case ?
VV: What I had also not realized is that the facts to a large part come from Wikipedia. This means that the evil Nazi WC, the spin master of the liberal global warming section of Wikipedia, in future also determines the Google search results.
There should be a way of ranking the use of "But, William Connelly!" as a technique of argumentation. It is generally used as a blanket rejection of Wikipedia, but may have some more detailed applications too. For example, I saw it used yesterday to prove that there's no greenhouse effect on Venus (because that's clearly what the Wiki page says). But I checked and Connelly wasn't among the editors, which leads me to think that it's becoming a meme.
The only question is what to call it. It mustn't begin with "Connelly's..." because he's not the proponent, and "Weasels Ripped My Flesh" is already taken.
[Nice; thanks -W]
It looks like Google is channeling its inner Lord Dorwin, from Foundation:
"And what does Lameth say?"
"Well, he goes off along a new twail completely. He twies to show that ahchaeological wemains on the thuhd planet of the Ahctuwian System show that humanity existed theah befoah theah wah any indications of space-twavel."
"And that means it was humanity's birth planet?"
"P'haps. I must wead it closely and weigh the evidence befoah I can say foah cuhtain. One must see just how weliable his obsuhvations ah."
Hardin remained silent for a short while. Then he said, "When did Lameth write his book?"
"Oh I should say about eight hundwed yeahs ago. Of cohse, he has based it lahgely on the pwevious wuhk of Gleen."
"Then why rely on him? Why not go to Arcturus and study the remains for yourself?"
Lord Dorwin raised his eyebrows and took a pinch of snuff hurriedly. "Why, whatevah foah, my deah fellow?"
"To get the information firsthand, of course."
"But wheah's the necessity? It seems an uncommonly woundabout and hopelessly wigmawolish method of getting anywheahs. Look heah, now, I've got the wuhks of all the old mastahs the gweat ahchaeologists of the past. I wigh them against each othah balance the disagweements analyze the conflicting statements decide which is pwobably cowwect and come to a conclusion. That is the scientific method. At least" patronizingly "as I see it. How insuffewably cwude it would be to go to Ahctuwus, oah to Sol, foah instance, and blundah about, when the old mastahs have covahed the gwound so much moah effectually than we could possibly hope to do."
Beware of the Heron!
[Poor little weasel :-( Still, all must eat -W]
No problem for denialsphere.
If Wikipedia is too biased, they csn always move to Andrew Schlafly's Conservapedia.
Might also want to look it up in RationalWiki.
"We will send more than 1,000 real visitors with Alexa toolbar installed to your site. Such visitors will be recorded by Alexa and provide you with real improvements to improve your rankings within 3 weeks. Guaranteed improvement of at least 5% within 3 weeks or your money back! Most customers experience 5% – 20% increase."
So is there any guarantee that any sites are free of bias?
Taken from this old magazine cover illustration, which you probably know, but if not, need for your collection, or at the least, remind you of its availability when words just won't do it.
What do you mean "old magazine"--
[I cry foul. I want my head (or Mann's? Or Gavin's?) photoshopped onto one of those weasels -W]
Is the world ready for GMO Mann-Weasel chimeras?
Feel free to immortalize yourself and Gavin but beware lest Josh respond with a Mann's Life cover .
[I cry foul. I want my head (or Mann’s? Or Gavin’s?) photoshopped onto one of those weasels -W]
The weasels heads are really tiny .... but what we could do ....
The move towards a truthier google is already on its way.
"[Google] updated their search results about health conditions. They now provide information that’s curated and vetted by doctors, including the Mayo Clinic!
That’s fantastic. So, for example, when you Google “measles,” the first couple of results are (as usual) news items, then links to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Mayo Clinic, and Wikipedia. I'll note that when I dug down a few pages in the results list, there still wasn't a single anti-vax site to be seen. Nice."
How will the mighty Google update score bogus temperature graphs and photoshopped weasel posters?
Only so much they can do with this one:
Handy list for searchers:
Are weasels and delingpolecats synonymous?
That Google link is scary:
Nice work with those weasels!
[The economists should stick to economics. Errm, and... -W]
That Google link is scary:
[The economists should stick to economics. Errm, and… -W]
Good grief, what a display of Dunning-Krugerism:
We check the main predictions of the climate models against the best and latest data. Fortunately the climate models got all their major predictions wrong. Why? Every serious skeptical scientist has been consistently saying essentially the same thing for over 20 years, yet most people have never heard the message.
They don't seem to get the skepticism concept, either.
Libertarian ideologues should stick to their ideological cant, and leave the science to actual scientists, government or otherwise.
the author of the Mises .org screed is so far out that he gives even Lubos Motl the willies !
[Lubos' Because the Fourier-transformed solar output has a peak (maximum) near the period 1/f of 11 years and because this Fourier transform appears in the denominator, R(f) will obviously have a similar minimum over there. The response function R̃ (f) will go close to zero for 1/f close to 11 years. It has to go to zero because it's needed to suppress the effect of the 11-year cycle that is seen in the sunspots and the TSI but that isn't seen in the global mean temperature! is just the obvious; but perhaps it needed saying. I thought I'd already said it -W]