Commexis Cast Daily – Mar. 14, 2018: YouTube to Add Wikipedia Excerpts to Conspiracy Videos

Today’s Commexis Cast discusses YouTube’s announcement at SXSW that it will be including Wikipedia excerpts alongside conspiracy videos on the platform in an attempt to offer more objective information. The efforts come in response to growing criticism of the platform and it’s suggestion algorithm, which made a conspiracy video falsely accusing the Parkland survivors of being “crisis actors” the #1 Trending video on YouTube. YouTube CEO Susan Wojciki on a panel at South by Southwest Interactive festival said boxes with so-called “information cues” will begin popping up in the next few weeks. You can see an example in the embedded tweet below.

On an interesting note, it seems Wikipedia was not made aware of the inclusion of their excerpts. Katherine Maher, the Executive Director at Wikimedia, said in a tweet thread this morning (you can read the first tweet in the thread below) that the decision was made independently by YouTube. Some are questioning whether Wikipedia is a correct choice for this kind of fact-checking, especially given it’s use by Facebook to fight fake news which we know, alongside many other factors, didn’t accomplish the goals Facebook set out. Maher tweeted about the scraping of Wikipedia content for this kind of use, stating, “And frankly, we don’t want you to blindly trust us. Sure, we’re mostly accurate – but not always! We want you to read @Wikipedia with a critical eye. Check citations! Edit and correct inaccurate information! You can’t do that in a simple search result.”

Wojciki said the Wikpedia articles, along with some other third-parties, will begin rolling out in the coming weeks.

Secondly, The Cast discussed eMarketer’s latest report shows A/B test do not create significant statistical results. The report continued that, “According to a survey of 3,900 professionals worldwide by UserTesting, fewer than 20% of respondents reported that their A/B tests produce significant results 80% of the time.” However, despite this small portion of statistical success, A/B tests can have huge positives. Jonathan Donahue, chief product officer of programmatic platform Sonobi, told eMarketer that “In some instances, A/B testing call-to-action features and ad headlines can save marketers 40% of their media budget on ad platforms like Facebook.”

Today’s cast: Phillip Brooks (Commexis Lead Strategist) and Matthew McGrorty (Commexis Videographer/Podcaster).

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