Out of curiosity, I searched on youtube "theory of evolution". Out of the first 20 results, 4 were about trying to prove that evolution is a myth, and it never happened.

Then I tried in Italian, "Teoria dell'evoluzione". 9 results of the first 20 were about "debunking" the theory of evolution.

I'm not sure this is related to my personal feed, but I found it interesting. It's almost half of the results in Italian!

> I'm not sure this is related to my personal feed

If you want more vanilla search results - ones that are less influenced by what the search engine knows about you - try using a private browser tab :)

@strypey Same results... we really suck in Italy I guess

@arteteco there is an entire #SEO industry that does nothing but gaming search engine results. All your data tells you is that someone with ark-loads of money to spend wants to make it hard Italians to access scientific knowledge online. There are many possible motives for this, but one is that people who understand less about how the world works are easier to manipulate.

@arteteco I'm more worried about the fact that in multiple languages there is a hit at all int he top 20!

@freemo Yeah, it sucks. We need more skilled communicators I guess.

Considering the statistics it makes sense though, less than half of the population in the US thinks we evolved from other animals.

In Italy should be a bit above 60%, so ok, it's well reflected

@arteteco I'm not sure if it is the lack of communication. Usually I find most morons who think this stuff to be true can not be convinced otherwise no matter how well someone communicates that.

The issue isnt the lack of communication, but the mindset of the people who think these things true.

@freemo There is that, too. I still think that more communicators, especially in high school and with kids, can do a great deal of difference. In Italy the school system is not really good, frankly.

Once they are grown up, at least that 15% of people who are not sure should be able to easily access good quality information and make up their mind.

Jeovah's witnesses here knock at doors and stop you in the streets, while the highest level of communication of many researchers I know is having a laugh about how we share a common ancestors with bananas when drunk, while trying to write the phylogenetic tree on the dusty windshield of a car =D

@arteteco We need communicators as parents, thats where it is lacking. Most of this willful ignorance comes from the parents.

I do agree that if we had better communicators in middle school and elementary school, it would likely help before these bad habits get established. But it is hard to work against a parent especially when you have a kid for only a year.

@freemo We do what we can. Like a STEM Instance!
Btw, if you good communicators and shows about it, please link, I'm starting to get interested in volunteering for this kind stuff and is very difficult to make evolution interesting (since I don't know how to find eye candy stuff to show kids!)

@arteteco I certainly do my best, but it feels hopeless sometimes.

@freemo @arteteco I think first important thing to do is to clarify the distinction between evolution and evolutionary history. Most people have a problem with the latter, and that is not surprising, since when it comes to history, at the end of the day, you have to speculate based on what seems most likely to you and that is highly dependent on your beliefs. It's kind of like a bait that allows people to drift the conversation away from science.

@namark @freemo
I'm not sure what you mean here. By evolutionary history you mean history of evolutionary theory? What problem could arise here?

Not the history of the theory itself (though I wouldn't necessarily recommend mixing that in either), but all the stuff about who originated from what some unimaginable amount of time ago.
I think it's much more important to understand the obvious and undeniable truths that the theory tells about things that are happening now, happened recently and will happen in the near future.



You can't really grasp what's happening now or it's going to happen in the near future if you don't understand what we know about evolution of life as a whole.

Mechanics may be similar but you need to frame them in the correct time span to have an understanding of them, and that is basically a geological time scale


It's not necessarily a geological time scale, say for microorganisms, and same principles apply to artificial neural networks. It depends on things like "rate" of mutation, number of generations, change of environment, not time directly. The fact that these things take long time for an organism like a human being is just an obvious side effect of us being said human beings.


@namark @freemo

I don't think any evolutionist would try to deny that either drift, selection or even mutation can happen at very different rates, even quite fast, depending on the organism, as we measure "time" by generation. Those examples are often used to illustrate the basics of evolution, such as the biston bitularia case, the flu rapid evolution and so on.

BUT, especially to explain very complex stuff like the structure of the eyes, how life came to be the way it is and such you have to put evolution into a geological time perspective.


My point is that "what things are" and "how the came to be" are two different questions, and the former is much more important in my opinion. I'm not saying that the latter should not be discussed/taught, but the discussions should be separate. When asked to explain a scientific theory, jumping straight into history is strange, and if you rely on that, it opens you up to scrutiny because no matter how likely the stories are, they cannot be proven rigorously.



I hope I'm getting your point, but I'm not sure.

The two questions you are presenting cannot be separated, IMO.

This could work for a theory which is valid without the time dimension, but evolution isn't. It's bound to time in a inextricable way, and it is about how things came to be what they are.

You can't really talk about it in a non-historical way (you may abstract it in a hypothetical mathematical way, but you'll still have to use the passing of time for it to have sense, like in a game theory set)

Much of the evidence we have is indirect (even though we have some recent observable ones, and mathematical ones), but that doesn't change much as we have a ton of different evidences from different fields and all agree (geology, paleontology, molecular biology, ecology...). It's very, very rigorous, and only one piece out of place could make the entire theory collapse (like the famous rabbit in the precambrian =D )


Well, I'm no expert, so can't really argue, It's just my layman opinion from seeing people claim rather straight forward things about single cell organisms existing today, only to be rebutted by others trying to prove that all life on earth did not originate from a single cell that come about randomly, which was completely beside the point, but none of the sides realized that, since both were talking about "evolution", of course.

@namark Sorry, I don't get what you mean. What are the claims about single-celled organisms existing today? Like, that they should have evolved in more complex forms, given the time?

@arteteco No, they were claiming just the most basic stuff, that over many generation the cells are changing through selection and mutation, and were met with "but evolution is wrong", presenting arguments regarding origins of life, hinged on physics/chemistry and statistics. No serious arguments that would phase any expert, just students discussing this in school setting. Point being the rebuttal had absolutely nothing to do with the original claim, but it managed to confuse the students.

@namark Now I see where you are coming from, thanks.
Actually yes, evolution deals with modification in generations of what's already here. The beginning of life is a different topic and it's a matter for biochemists, more than naturalists (as I am).

Since day 1 to now, and since 100 years ago to now, dynamics are the same.

I see that it is something that could confuse a high school student though

@freemo @arteteco Most of the time this kind of stuff happen because some people are like : "science is too complicated I don't understand !"
For this kind of person, it's easier to listen to this theory that are based on observations of a single point of view.
They find it easier to believe that "the earth is flat" because from their point of view, they can't see anything easy to understand to prove they are wrong.

Communication may help some to get a better understanding, but some other will just ignore the facts and concentrate on their own believe. Sadly, I think that the later ones are the majority...

@Ytrezar @freemo

The "science is too complicated" is dangerous, but the worst is "science is boring", and "science is done by scientists".

We have a common public acceptance of stuff that would have blown the mind of people 500 years ago, like germs, cells theory, DNA. Against evolutionary theory is the active force of religions, I'd say, more than just the passive "yeah no, too complicated". That's why I think that we need more active force in the explanation of this ideas.

my two cents though.

@arteteco In the past two years youtube has turned into a thought-bubble. Please use or peertube instances.

@johnlitt Hi, still same results: 4 against evolution in English, 9 in Italian.

@arteteco Could you please follow the following steps and see if the problem repeats?

1. Use Firefox.
2. Install PrivacyBadger and UblockOrigin.
3. Block all google related domains using preferences tab in firefox.

@johnlitt Are you saying this because you found different results?


4:44The Evolution Of The Joker (Animated)Tell It Animated1 day ago844,108 viewsThe Evolution Of The Joker is sponsored by AFK Arena, support my channel by downloading AFK Arena here: ...NewCC15videosEvolution Abitur - Übungsaufgaben auf www.thesimpleclub.deBiologie - simpleclub6:10Evolutionstheorie von Charles Darwin ● Gehe auf SIMPLECLUB.DE/GO & werde :32ÜBUNGSAUFGABEN HIER 😍| Gehe auf SIMPLECLUB.DE/GO & werde ● Gehe auf SIMPLECLUB.DE/GOView full playlist4:01Pearl Jam - Do the Evolution (Official Video)Pearl Jam10 years ago38,879,348 viewsCheck out the official music video for "Do the Evolution" by Pearl Jam Best of Pearl Jam: Subscribe here: ...11:48How Evolution worksKurzgesagt – In a Nutshell6 years ago6,958,615 viewsThe mechanisms of evolution explained in one video.The theory of evolution explains how the enormous variety of life could ...CC3:46Korn - Evolution (Official Video)

@johnlitt what did you search for? Theory of evolution, and checked the first 20 results, as I did?


Now i searched theory of evolution and got the following results (see attached pic)

@arteteco okay..

I think youtube algorithm is not scientific but shows what people click on the most

@johnlitt of course it's not scientific, it's alright, I was just curious to see in different languages how much of resistance evolutionary theory encounters, so in a sense I'm more interested in the stuff people click the most anyway =)

@realcaseyrollins Are you being ironic? I think it's just that those videos are more seen, or more abundant

@arteteco Nope. What you're documenting is algorithms censoring english search results debunking evolution. What is notable about this is that, in comparison, the french results are far more balanced, which make it seem more likely to me that this a censorship and not just a coincidence.

@realcaseyrollins how do you know different languages of youtube have different algorithms and that that is the reason of the difference in the number of pro-against in the results?

Also, what do you mean by "more balanced"? Compared to what?

@arteteco Because efforts for censorship would likely target keywords, and those keywords might only be in certain languages, depending on the market the company wishes to target their censorship for.

As far as balance, it we that an equal representation of both the belief and disbelief of a theory is only fair, albeit too much to ask if it's widely believed like evolution.

@realcaseyrollins So you don't have like a proof, is just "likely"?

I don't see any reason for google to censor this contents, they basically want to get you what you are looking for. If you have evidence, I'll surely change my mind, but frankly it was also beside the scope of my very quick and dirty 5 minutes research =D

If for you 50/50 is a balanced representation of a theory for which we have a basically unanimous scientific consensus, that is another kind of problem. It's like saying that we should have 50/50 on the existence of cells.


1) Google has done this sort of censorship before, which is why I think I is likely.

2) Also, the theory of evolution is not comparable to the existence of cells; one is a theory and the other can be proven imperically.

Now not everyone supports evolution, and even those who do have different opinions on how it works. Besides, the most reliable texts of all time, the Bible, already tell us how the world came into being.

@realcaseyrollins cells are also part of a theory: it's called "cell theory". A theory, in scientific language, is an hypothesis that has withstood a massive amount of falsification attempts and is now universally recognized as true. That's a theory. Like cell theory. Like theory of relativity. Like evolution.

Are you ironic by saying that the bible is the most reliable sum of texts of all time?

@arteteco And I'm not at all being ironic when saying that the Bible is the most reliable text of all time.

My personal favorite evidence for the scriptures' reliability:

@realcaseyrollins there is not a single biologist/naturalist/ecologist/scientist working with this stuff who doesn't support evolution. The consensus is basically unanimous.

The fact that scientists disagree on the details is because we are scientists. Even on the mechanisms involved in the cell there are disagreement and there is still stuff to explore, doesn't mean the cell theory should collapse.

This was just to keep the example, but you can choose whatever theory and you'll see scientists debating on the details, consequences, relative importance of every factor and so on.

@realcaseyrollins half of the people, yes, I know the stats.
How many of the scientists, though? Like all of us.

When to keep a conversation the person I'm talking to, ie you, forces me to use hours of my time reading resources and watching videos, while I managed to keep most of the very complex evolutionary theory stuff down to a few lines, I'm sorry buddy, but seems like a dick move, and I'm out of the conversation.

@arteteco That's fair.

Here's an excerpt from one of the resources that serves as a pretty good case against it, listing issues in the evolutionary theory:

(1) Tell students that the fossil record often lacks transitional forms and that there are “explosions” of new life forms, a pattern of radiations that challenges Darwinian evolutionary theory.
(2) Tell students that many scientists have challenged the ability of random mutation and natural selection to produce complex biological features.
(3) Tell students that many lines of evidence for Darwinian evolution and common descent are weak:
a. Vertebrate embryos start out developing very differently, in contrast with the drawings of embryos often found in textbooks which mostly appear similar.
b. DNA evidence paints conflicting pictures of the “tree of life”. There is no such single “tree.”
c. Evidence of small-scale changes, such as the modest changes in the size of finch-beaks or slight changes in the color frequencies in the wings of “peppered moths”, shows microevolution, NOT macroevolution.


1) We have explosions, like the cambrian explosion, which have a massive radiation, and we also have transitional forms, like we have for many of the horse ancestors. Some speciation events even happen in a single season, others in millions of years. Evolution does not have a fixed rate, but varies. This is called, in the field, punctuated equilibrium and saltation, proposed by stephen j gould (just to give you some keywords to search)

2) Who? And how was the challenge proposed, and how did it developed?

a) The vertebrate embryos develop in a very similar way actually. Have you ever seen an embryo development? Do you think you can have one without gastrulation, just to say one?

b)Yep, we do not have a single tree of life. We have many different trees, with support for branches, oftentimes based on the traits we use in our matrix. I don't think we'll ever know the real tree (even if we knew wouldn't know that is the one), but we can make guesses and those are developing very quickly. We can get closer and closer, and in the past 40 years we have major jumps in the field. What is exactly the point here? Is like saying that tectonic isn't real because I can't tell you exactly where a single rock was formed. We use those methods daily in the medical field when we look at virus evolution and changes, agronomical pest control because they evolve pretty fast, etc. Rebuilding the tree is a corner stone of such researches, and it works pretty well even without a 100% probability.

c) We do have evidence for both macro and microevolution. The mechanisms involved are the same (mutation, drift, selection, etc) but the scale of course changes. The methods could be paleonthological, molecular, you name it.

So, what's really your point? All of the methods of inquiry we have agree (with higher or smaller variance) on the results. You'll never have a rabbit in the precambrian.


1) You are correct on this point (

2) There is a big list here ( but it's actually a whole lot, even more than I was expecting. Most of them have PhDs in Chemistry, Physics, Biochemistry, Genetics, and Biology, among others.

(I unfortunately am not familiar with all their critiques of evolution, however.)

a) “Counter to the expectations of early embryonic conservation, many studies have shown that there is often remarkable divergence between related species both early and late in development.” “despite repeated assertions of the uniformity of early embryos within members of a phylum, development before the phylotypic stage is very varied.”


b) I think the point here is to say all life did not evolve from a single organism, as it does not refuse evolution per se, but disagrees with the concept of all of life descending from a singular life form.

c) What is the evidence for macroevolution?


2) Even I would sign off there. Mutation and natural selection are not enough to explain life (if you don't chip in the drift I say it's a pretty bad framework in general), and I totally agree that all evidence should always be carefully examinated. Darwin also had some things wrong, and at the time genetics didn't even exist, so of course we need to work on it. How is this a list of people refusing evolution? Am I missing something?


a) Again, you have some parts of the onthogenesis which are the same regardless of the species for all vertebrates, like gastrulation, or the development of the notochord. You have many body parts which are evidently analogous, I am not a zoologist so I may not have all the comparative anatomy straight regarding vertebrates. Of course there are going to be differences, otherwise they would be the same organisms.

b) just because we don't know the tree of life it means that life originated multiple times? How so? Just consider for a moment that evolution happened from a single organism: why, in this case, you reckon that it would be easy to trace all of the existing life forms lineages? Data is messy, and spans billion of years.

c) For example the evolution of cetacea, where you still see unused appendeces useful for land movement today, you have fossils of transition and you have molecular evidence. I'm sure it makes sense to you that it's more difficult to gather all the evidence for something that took millions of years, but we have a lot of stuff.
Some changes may often be due to how the DNA works, especially in terms of mutations on a regulatory gene, like the Hox. But I really am trying to avoid being too technical.

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