YouTube now displays facts below conspiracy theory videos

Global warming, the MMR vaccine, UFOs, and more are in the spotlight so far. But will it work?

Misinformation is pretty much a constant on the Internet—and, especially, YouTube. (Cough *Alex Jones* cough).


On July 9, the company added fact-confirming text below videos about climate change, andit cleared things up for those who watched it. The text itself?  Directly from Wikipedia, stating clearly, “multiple lines of scientific evidence show that the climate system is warming.”

It's interesting to listen to the fake science guy narrate this clip while that is sitting, ever so clearly, at the bottom.

YouTube is also using Encyclopedia Britannica—of course, the online version, for those whose minds immediately went to the full 26-volume printed version—as a reference for the facts, or lack thereof, within the videos. 

It’s a valiant effort to combat fake news and fake science at a time when we really need it. Conspiracy theorists are drawn to videos that feature science and scientific explanations for our world—think moon landing, the Oklahoma City bombing, the 9/11 World Trade Center airplane attacks, and the autism/vaccine “connection” that has been disproven over and over (and over) again. 

YouTube is also investing $25 million in grants to news organizations that wish to expand video operations. This is part of a larger $300 million program funded by YouTube's parent company, Google.

The company will not disclose what topics it is using the Wikipedia/Encyclopedia Britannica sourcing for, but Wikipedia itself posted about that in July. They are, at least so far (Warning: It's about to get weird in here!):

It’s another plank in Google’s attempts to tamp down misinformation. Perhaps other major companies (cough *Facebook* cough) will follow suit? Here’s what another fact-checking reference looks like:

Will it help combat the rampant disinformation that's out there?

Time will tell.

3D printing might save your life one day. It's transforming medicine and health care.

What can 3D printing do for medicine? The "sky is the limit," says Northwell Health researcher Dr. Todd Goldstein.

Northwell Health
Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Medical professionals are currently using 3D printers to create prosthetics and patient-specific organ models that doctors can use to prepare for surgery.
  • Eventually, scientists hope to print patient-specific organs that can be transplanted safely into the human body.
  • Northwell Health, New York State's largest health care provider, is pioneering 3D printing in medicine in three key ways.
Keep reading Show less

Cheers! How the physics of fizz contributes to human happiness

The phenomenon that makes our favourite drinks bubbly is, alarmingly, the same one that causes decompression sickness in divers. Why do we still love it?

Surprising Science

Think of the last time you had something to celebrate. If you toasted the happy occasion, your drink was probably alcoholic – and bubbly.

Keep reading Show less

Why the south of Westeros is the north of Ireland

As Game of Thrones ends, a revealing resolution to its perplexing geography.

Image: YouTube / Doosh
Strange Maps
  • The fantasy world of Game of Thrones was inspired by real places and events.
  • But the map of Westeros is a good example of the perplexing relation between fantasy and reality.
  • Like Britain, it has a Wall in the North, but the map only really clicks into place if you add Ireland.
Keep reading Show less