YouTube — Fix Your AI for Climate Change! An Invitation to an Open Dialogue

Image: Ganges River Delta. Image provided by the USGS EROS Data Center Satellite Systems Branch. Caption adapted from text provided by NASA’s Earth Observatory. Source: NASA/USGS Landsat 7; NASA Earth Observatory. From NASA Climate YouTube channel

An interview with Joachim Allgaier on his recently published study on how social media platforms such as YouTube have become hostile to climate science. When you search around climate change on YouTube the results are 50/50 climate science versus anti-science Chemtrails conspiracy theories. YouTube and Google Scholar have been strategically hijacked by groups posting anti-science content, while at the same time academia has neglected to use YouTube and recognise it as the vitally important channel for their scientific voices to be heard. The interview is a call for scientists to actively engage with the platform and for YouTube to reflect the values put forward by its CEO and Google co-founder Susan Wojcicki of an appreciation of the scholarly environment within Silicon Valley. These values could be actioned in YouTube’s AI to favor scientific factual content and by adopting Open Science practices of enhanced transparency across its platforms as anti-science Chemtrails content is also immediately found in search results on Google Scholar. Open has worked for Google’s support of its technology stack with open source, why not apply the same workings to its search indexing, dare it be said by applying a little open library science.

Illuminating Dark Knowledge

How innovation in search engines needs renewing with
open working and open indexes

Image: LA at Night, Wikimedia, 

Without being able to build on top of existing — search tools and indexes — innovation in search engines is being held back and letting down researchers and the public. The Open Access and Open Science movement that have worked hard to make free hundreds of thousands of publications, but at the last mile search engines are failing to effectively deliver on discovery. Public knowledge is hidden in plain sight — a phenomenon called “Dark Knowledge”. This article is a call for open infrastructural ‘ways of working’ to be adopted as ‘the new normal’ to turn this situation around in software and interface development for scholarly search.

Read More