Unintended consequences

I noticed this today (via @elanaeloni) and had to take a screenshot.

In case you are having trouble reading it, the comments note that it is actually the schools’ fault that this bogus, hate-filled site is so high on the Google rankings.  If the schools refrained from linking to it, it wouldn’t rank so high.  My favorite quote, “do schools not understand how the intertubes work?”  No, no they don’t.

This is a great example of unintended consequences.  This site gets recycled and keeps its ranking high because teachers and librarians rely on this artificial example. While this is a strong illustration of one aspect of internet reliability, it is actually the schools in their zeal to point out how unreliable the internet is who increase the visibility of this particular site and thus make the search results unreliable. It’s interesting that we don’t know the other reliable sources returned in the search.

What are your best strategies for teaching about reliability of internet sources?

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