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Author Topic: Taking control of the internet?  (Read 5918 times)

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Offline Iggy

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Taking control of the internet?
« on: August 28, 2007, 03:29:42 PM »
I recently came across Mahalo, which for those who do not know, is a next level of web 2.0 search engines.  Basically the premise is that instead of search results coming up via algorithms and formulas, they are created by human research into a topic and community  submitted links.

The page I found at Mahalo was pretty basic for HIV information which in this case may be a good thing as there is less fluff to filter through.  I have already submitted some links for suggestions and added some thought on the discussion page.

http://www.mahalo.com/Human_Immunodeficiency_Virus_%28HIV%29

What this all brought to my mind however is that with many discussions for HIV issues, we have all realized the wealth of both good and bad information out there and I began to wonder if perhaps there could be developed a sort of misinformation swat team for the internet.

I know this sounds a little crazy, but my thought is that a number of people agree to form a committee or group that will tackle two specific tasks:

1.  Reviewing current results for HIV related material in all the major search engines (Google, MSN, Yahoo, etc) and when it appears that there is a misrepresentation of factual material within their immediate results - notify them and request evaluation and possible rectifying of slanted results.

2.  The second issue is that like the above example of mahalo, there is a growth of new types of search engines that are still developing their results in any given topic.  We need to find those new search communities and then play a significant role in helping develop the right information that may be viewed by thousands.

The primary interest in my mind is the battle against denialists who seem to flood search results with multiple web postsing that simple algorithms don't detect as manipulating the process.

It's slightly geeky and boring work that is a long term investment on any who were interested, but I wanted to throw this idea out there to see if any would be willing to assist or had ideas how to make this truly work.

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2007, 12:44:48 PM »
IF I were a techy, I'd gladly assist. I think your idea has merit, Iggy, given the internet's reach and the gullible within it. I'd like to think there are site members who have the know-how and see the need. I gather it would be like the Urbanlore site that enables you to determine if you've received a years old e-mail touting a warning or story. Of course, this would have more detail with regard to medical info, links, resources and affiliations such that it would have the desired e-cred.

The more I think about this, wouldn't the major players such as John Hopkins, pharma companies, CDC, and others see the value in such a project? Perhaps your idea is a worthy of a grant proposal, funding and actually get a few folks paid to do this? Once started, it shouldn't be stopped and there will never be an end to beet juice and garlic solutions as well as denialists' assertions.

Taking this one step further, I think the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation would be excellent as a first funder to contact! And, who better than Bill to put the brainpower of Microsoft behind such a world-serving effort? I'll prowl their site and find out the criteria for a grant proposal submission and, if you're game, I'd be happy to co-write the proposal with you and anyone else who wants to jump in.

Em
« Last Edit: September 03, 2007, 12:51:00 PM by emeraldize »

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2007, 12:49:43 PM »
Addendum: Here's the link to the page that applies to this and I think your idea would fit as a strategy or technologies that would certainly support prevention through accurate information as one aspect of its potential outcomes.

http://www.gatesfoundation.org/GlobalHealth/Pri_Diseases/HIVAIDS/HIV_Grantmaking.htm

Offline Iggy

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2007, 04:21:02 PM »
Em,

Wow.   That really does take this to a level I didn't conceive.  I think it's a worthwhile goal and I'm gonna look at the link and give it some thought...I just may take you up on your offer to help write the proposal.

Thank you.

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2007, 05:50:09 PM »
You're welcome, Iggy.
Thank YOU for thinking it up in the first place.
It would be a pleasure to work on such a proposal.

Em

Offline Smoothstone

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2007, 12:43:59 AM »
Bravo! This is needed and will assist significantly large numbers of people in making health related choices and decisions. It will save people with money time and be sought out. You have identified a big gap in internet services.

My first hand experience is dealing with the current inadequacies of  Google and Yahoo and Wikipedia..around the loaded product of poppers...

And for disclosure I have a long history of educating people about the hazards of poppers. The topic has been loaded prior to AIDS surfacing. 

For about 5 years a Google search for "poppers" would rank 1 or 2  www.allaboutpoppers.com  The site bills itself as the most comprehensive and respected site on poppers.  The short version is that the site exonerates poppers, debunks  published scientific research,  or omits references to negative, cautionary findings. No surprise. But that site is also linked from over 500 gay web oriented sites.

During a running battle about poppers on  Wikipedia someone employed an internet program and discovered that the www.allaboutpoppers.com site was owned by Pacific West Distributing...a major popper distributor/possibly manufacturer... It was a popper industry propaganda website. Smart investment, especially given the ranking protocol for the major search engines.    Between about 2000 and 2005 the content on that site skirted the issue of published research and utilized "expert" testimony.   "Safe as aspirin" was one proclamation.   Shortly after a Bay Area Reporter focus on the internet popper wars and citing website distortions the site was eliminated entirely from a Google ranking....a major development considering that site had been consistently number 1 or 2 for 5 years.  About 6 months ago the site resurfaced with mostly new content and a focus on research.  For the past 2 years that site has devoted itself to research about poppers...omissions, partial info, distortions, mistruths.

 There is a need for credible review of internet content. Essential in health topics where  people can be endangered with misinformation, partial information,distortions,omissions,  mistruths.  The monied industries invest to keep consumers/potential consumers ignorant and or motivated,steered towards their products, services, etc.....advertising only the plusses. 

If you develop the concept, you may have Google, Yahoo, etc buying your wisdom. Its kind of like website insurance...credibility check/credibility insurance. You might design it as a "pay for expertise" option that the monied would be eager to pay for...a time saver for the busy..an investment to maximize healthy choices.

 I would use it if I could afford the fee. If there was no fee, I would search it out.


 


Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2007, 11:08:03 AM »
You might design it as a "pay for expertise" option that the monied would be eager to pay for...a time saver for the busy..an investment to maximize healthy choices.


SS: Quick note before dashing off. To make it fee-based would make it exclusive and therefore prohibitive to many who would benefit hence the notion of finding funders, underwriters. Please stay in touch with this thread.

Offline Iggy

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2007, 09:08:46 PM »

For about 5 years a Google search for "poppers" would rank 1 or 2  www.allaboutpoppers.com  The site bills itself as the most comprehensive and respected site on poppers.  The short version is that the site exonerates poppers, debunks  published scientific research,  or omits references to negative, cautionary findings. No surprise. But that site is also linked from over 500 gay web oriented sites.


Your long point about poppers seems strange in this discussion. What's very telling is that in all your faults that you list with what came up wrong in an internet search on poppers you don't cite a single instance of denalists sites claims as a reason to be wary...which is sort of a strange omission by you since they are some of the most prevalent listings with their pseudo science when one searches about poppers on the internet.

To clarify - I'm seeking to combat denalists and junk science - not trying to play religious or morales police.

MODIFIED:  I just remembered who smoothstone is and I realize that my implication of his m.o. on the issue is way off the mark - and I apologize for that.  That said I am leaving what I wrote because though I admit it is not true about Hank - it is a specific issue (the poppers as a cause of AIDS issue) that is one of the things that worries me about many HIV specific links to denalists sites.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2007, 10:17:02 PM by Iggy »

Offline Iggy

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2007, 09:10:40 PM »
SS: Quick note before dashing off. To make it fee-based would make it exclusive and therefore prohibitive to many who would benefit hence the notion of finding funders, underwriters. Please stay in touch with this thread.

Agreed - it would also run counter to the whole goal of the idea which is to counter the misinformation that is out there for general consumption.

Offline Moffie65

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  • Living POZ since 1983
Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2007, 01:21:41 PM »
I'd like to study this thread, and might be interested in helping out.  I am not sure about the time factor, but I will certainly check back in when I've digested this thread.

I hope I can be of some help, Em, and Iggy.

Love,
The Bible contains 6 admonishments to homosexuals,
and 362 to heterosexuals.
This doesn't mean that God doesn't love heterosexuals,
It's just that they need more supervision.
Lynn Lavne

Offline Miss Philicia

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  • celebrity poster, faker & poser
Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2007, 02:35:57 PM »
ugh...  not more of this poppers BS
"Iíve slept with enough men to know that Iím not gay"

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2007, 10:46:12 PM »
Thanks Tim!

Offline Iggy

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2007, 06:51:12 PM »
Tim mentioned that the link for the one webiste is not working.  Please try this one:

http://www.mahalo.com/Human_immunodeficiency_virus_%28hiv%29

They've apparently incorporated my link suggestions into the page results themselves.
« Last Edit: September 07, 2007, 06:52:59 PM by Iggy »

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2007, 04:28:34 PM »
If there's a group educational session similar to the one with Tim Horn at AMG Montreal, would someone please bring this topic up to get some feedback from Tim and others present?

It will take considerable discussion and research in order to determine the viability of this idea. Then, if it does have legs, it will require a lot of input from various folks in order to write a solid grant proposal.

If anyone reading this is attending AMG and would be willing to be its ambassador,should the opportunity arise, it would be greatly appreciated. There's nothing like live chat about such things.


Offline Iggy

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2007, 08:39:08 PM »
Em,

That's a great idea!  I apologize I haven't done anything yet with this but there have been two reasons:

1.  waiting a little to see who else would be interested

2. Honestly tied up with getting ready to move. 

Just a heads-up to all that I am serious about this and Within the next two weeks or so I should be settled and plan to get the ball rolling with the grant writing process.

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2007, 09:23:47 PM »
HI Iggy

No apology necessary---I just wanted to take advantage of the brainpower of the gang in SF before it slipped my mind. I've never doubted for a second that you want to see if this can move forward.

I hope your move goes smoothly. Moving is the ickiest.

I also believe that Tim (Moffie) will give it a serious look and I hope he decides to help. I'm inclined to think more people will help when we can be more specific as to what help is needed. i.e. research of particular minutae, funders, etc.

Em

Offline Iggy

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #16 on: September 21, 2007, 03:48:53 PM »
Now that I am settled in little old Charlotte and am not yet emplyed I have no excuse not to get cracking on this proposal.  I'm going to go through the guidelines this weekend and see about what needs to be done.

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Taking control of the internet?
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2007, 12:34:59 PM »
Great!

You settled so quickly!!

Whenever you're ready to put together a Ghant chart and initial team/duties list, please PM me and we can work directly via e-mail


 


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