Warning: This Site Contains Conspiracy Theories
Does Google have a responsibility to help stop the spread of 9/11 denialism, anti-vaccine activism, and other fringe beliefs?
In its early days, the Web was often imagined as a global clearinghouse—a new type of library, with the sum total of human knowledge always at our fingertips. That much has happened—but with a twist: In addition to borrowing existing items from its vast collections, we, the patrons, could also deposit our own books, pamphlets and other scribbles—with no or little quality control.
Such democratization of information-gathering—when accompanied by smart institutional and technological arrangements—has been tremendously useful, giving us Wikipedia and Twitter. But it has also spawned thousands of sites that undermine scientific consensus, overturn well-established facts, and promote conspiracy theories. Meanwhile, the move toward social search may further insulate regular visitors to such sites; discovering even more links found by their equally paranoid friends will hardly enlighten them. Is it time for some kind of a quality control system?
“9/11 Conspiracy Roadtrip BBC show” – A Participant’s Perspective
Hello, my name is Emily Church and I am a mute.
Well, according to the masters of propaganda at the BBC/Renegade Productions.
This summer I participated in a BBC hit piece on 9/11, entitled “Conspiracy Roadtrip”. The premise is simple: five non-believers of the official story journey across the east coast of the USA in search of the truth. On the way we meet “experts” and victims of the attacks, guided by “comedian” Andrew Maxwell who believes the 9/11 commission report was the be all and end all of the 9/11 story.
The show aired a few hours ago and I felt compelled to write my version of what happened on that 8 day roadtrip, to give you the perspective you were not shown by BBC 3.
Firstly, I must tip my hat to them. They did a wonderful editing job. Anyone who has ever had a conversation with me or knows me personally will be very much aware of my opinions re: 9/11, and how outspoken I am about them. However, on this show I appear to be pretty much silent the entire way through.
I have a feeling this one may make the truth movement look really bad.
This September marks the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, one of the biggest terrorist atrocities of the 21st Century. Nineteen hijackers, all members of Al Qaeda, crashed four planes on American soil, leading to the deaths of 2,973 innocent people.
This horrific event has generated a multitude of conspiracy theories that contradict the official findings of the US government's investigation into the events of that day.
Andrew Maxwell, a comedian, believes in the findings of the official investigation, which claim the responsibility for the attack lies with Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda. He thinks the conspiracies theories are unsubstantiated nonsense. So in this film he offers to take five young Brits, who believe some of these conspiracy theories, on a road-trip from New York to Washington. They visit Ground Zero where two planes hit the Twin Towers, the Pentagon, home of vast American defence HQ and Shanksville in Pennsylvania where United 93 crashed.
A decade after the attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania, the Conspiracy Files looks at why some people still question what really happened on 9/11. Conspiracy theories continue to evolve and now question every aspect of the official account. Why, they ask, was the hole in the Pentagon so small? Why did the World Trade Centre buildings collapse as if being demolished by explosives? Why did one skyscraper fall when it was never hit by a plane? And why was the world's greatest military power so unprepared and so slow to react when warnings had been received?
The death of Osama Bin Laden might have been expected to put an end to the conspiracy theories, but the failure to release any pictures of Bin Laden's death and the hasty disposal of his body in the Arabian Sea, has instead given these theories a new burst of life.
Featuring key witnesses, CIA and FBI interviewees and leading sceptics, the programme analyses the evidence and looks at what makes conspiracy theories so persistent and so powerful.