Ahhhh, the Snopes Clowns are at it again.
They hit us where it hurts, and validated us. You see, the Snopes “fact checking” model is innately false because it is based on a well-known logical fallacy, the Appeal to Authority, and logical fallacies are dangerous. Thus, to be approved by them is a dubious honor, like an honorary trophy from the American Society for Child Killing, and we kindly but firmly refuse any such validation whenever offered. It gives credence to the fatally flawed Snopes model itself. We aren’t ingrates, we just think it is imperative that we don’t contribute to reporting models that are literally dangerous, and harmful to an audience’s ability to think critically. Snopes doesn’t do any journalism itself, by the way, they are like low-class Yelp reviewers paid to attack businesses before they visit them, if at all.
In fact, because we know through Snopes’ own history they are hit and run defamation mercenaries for sale to the highest bidder, we couldn’t do anything but distance ourselves from these professional slanderers as a matter of conscience. We not only reject their endorsement, our legal team will ensure they never try to do it again. It was decided that our best option was to demand they call anything we publish “false,” even retroactively, lest a “true” rating from these evil clowns suggest we are a willing part of their three-ring shit show; where ethical, professional journos are shot out of cannons into shark tanks and child molesters are fanned and held aloft obsequiously by a cheering Snopes caravan.
If we publish an article on how the sun is hot, and Snopes cites us as true, we demand under threat of immediate litigation that they call our story false even if it is self-evidently true. Why? That is what their reputation means to us, and to any journalist or researcher with a modicum of integrity. We don’t need their seal of approval. We print it out, in fact, wipe our asses with it, and mail it back.
Oh Snopes. As for you lie breathing retinue of cut-and-paste illiterate dumb asses and trolls, your perdition is duly arranged with military precision. Come this way, we’ve been expecting you. Please be seated… Now, tell us all you know about Zuckerberg, Schmidt, and Soros, won’t you?
These unqualified miscreants at Snopes will decide the fate of your hard work, and its ability to be shared and publicized on Google and Facebook, which hits you right in the pocketbook. They are professional character assassins, and they come in handy when truth embarrasses the tech giants.
As you can see, we prefer an adversarial relationship with Snopes until their model changes; until they come clean with their readers (starting with a tagline that reads something like “our founder is an embezzling fraud”). We checked, and marked the claim with an Impious Digest “True dat!” check mark.
Founder David Mickkelson made international news recently for embezzlement, fraud, lies, and putting prostitutes and his honeymoon on his expenses. This was to the point Snopes almost collapsed, so Snopes isn’t something synonymous with integrity to begin with.
David Mikkelson told the Dailymail.com that Snopes… has no set requirements for fact-checkers because the variety of the work ‘would be difficult to encompass in any single blanket set of standards.’
‘Accordingly, our editorial staff is drawn from diverse backgrounds; some of them have degrees and/or professional experience in journalism, and some of them don’t,’ he added.
Now for you real journalists and actual scholars out there, how does it feel to know your work will be judged, and possibly censored, by partisan hacks that are not even trained in your field? Kinda makes your Columbia University journalism degree seem useless, no?
The larger part of the problem is that its entire fact-checking model is false. It relies on the logical fallacy of Appeals to Authority.
Simply put, they persuade by outright lying and discourage critical thinking. The Snopes model means Katy Perry can be cited as an expert on advanced theoretical physics simply because she is more famous than the guy at Cal Tech who worked on wormholes all of his life.
Not that the “smartest girl in the world” isn’t capable of rising to the task…
A great quote from HNN in article titled Donald Trump Protester Speaks Out: “I Was Paid $3,500 To Protest Trump’s Rally”
David Mikkelson, founder of Snopes, a website known for giving biased opinions of stories on the internet in order to generate advertising revenue, told ABC News that he approves of what a story like this is accomplishing.
“You have to understand that when a story like this goes viral, and we spend a minute or two debunking it, we make lots of money. Stories like this have helped put my children through college, buy a new car, a home and even get the surgery my wife Barbara wanted so I didn’t have to use Viagra anymore.” Mikkleson laughs, “We claim ‘to provide evidence for such debunkings and confirmation as well‘, but that’s just ridiculous. Do you know how much time that would take? Instead, we just copy and paste parts of the original article into ours, write a couple sentences, and that’s it.
“I just want to be clear, our website does zero journalism or anything creative, and I’m only telling you this for legal reasons. For example, do you remember that recent article we wrote debunking a story which claimed Scientology lost it’s tax-exempt status? Did you actually read it? What is the name of the person responsible? What is the actual website URL? We claim to know it, since we list the website’s disclaimer in there, but no real information is there.
“We even go as far as saying the site that started the story spreads malware and viruses, but we don’t say what website it is. I think warning people about a website that could potentially destroy their computer is probably a good idea, and I hope one day to do that kind of ethical journalism, but people will click our ads regardless, bottom line; so why do the extra work? To be honest, I’d say in a given week I probably only do about fifteen minutes of real, actual, work.”
David and Barbara Mikkelson, founders of Snopes “fact checking” site.
— The Impious Digest (@impiousdigest) August 23, 2016
— The People’s Voice (@PeoplesVoice_TV) August 23, 2016