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Getting info about Natural healing and anti-GMO

 
gardener
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As many of you know, Google, Facebook, and Instagram have changed their algorithm. They have decided that info about natural healing, GMO's, glyphosate, vaccines and several other topics are "fake news". They are trying to restrict people's accessibility to this info, so it goes straight to the bottom of any search. You can't find it on a search.  Likewise, Mercola, Green Med Info, Natural Health 365, and several other sites that come up on a search unless you are specifically looking for them.  Then I found out about duckduckgo, which is a search engine that doesn't filter out natural health, etc.  I switched to duckduckgo, and I have talked to several other people who also are doing that.  I have no connection to duckduckgo, financial or otherwise, but I think people on permies.com might want to know about how to find info about natural health.

John S
PDX OR
 
pollinator
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I can't honestly take issue with some of what they're trying to achieve.

There's an outbreak currently of a childhood disease that could have been eradicated on this continent, obviating the need for ongoing immunisation (notice how we aren't immunised against smallpox?). Instead of that, though, people who have been born in a century lucky enough to not know how bad not having vaccines is opt out, endangering our herd immunity and, consequently, those who are actually too immune compromised to get vaccinated.

I can't really argue if there's going to be a lower incidence of himalayan salt lamps and homeopaths on my personal feed. I find that the loudest people posting about GMOs are more concerned with alarmism than what I would consider proof of their claims, and I don't need that kind of added stress. I have an idea about how bad some of these things are, probably for better reasons than many of those screaming about them, and my concerns have more to do with engineering for tolerance of toxicity and the resultant herbicidal fallout on soil and residual loads in our foods than they do with tomacco.



I don't think these measures will impact properly researched and documented articles from respected sources. And if you already know what flavour of fact you're looking for enough to search it out, how will it affect you?

-CK
 
Chris Kott
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And honestly, I don't see any changes, after some quick searches. I still see the same ScienceDirect articles, the same Forbes articles, the same conservative american science councils writeups that focus on how the mechanism of action targeted by glyphosate exists in plants and bacteria, but not in humans, but fails to address the issue of the sterilisation of the human bacteriome by residual glyphosate in our food.

I will keep an eye on this, but I still think that there are greater problems with dissemination of information on the internet than Google, Facepalm and Instagram taking anemic steps towards curbing the portrayal of misinformation or incomplete reporting as news and fact.

-CK
 
John Suavecito
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The goal seems to me to stop people from learning about natural healing.  Big Pharma is probably worried that people will start growing herbs in their yards, and be less likely to want to purchase expensive medications with side effects.  

If they can stop the already huge movement of people from finding out about traditional, natural health, they can retain much more of their huge economic profits.

Many of the online summits show people how to be healthy without Big Pharma, and explain about how masking symptoms doesn't solve the problem.  They want to shut that down.

They don't want people to know that there are other ways to prevent cancer that they wont' talk about.  There are other ways of dealing with cancer than chemotherapy, radiation and surgery, but they don't want you to know about them.  

I am certain that they don't want regular people to know that there is a large and increasing number of doctors and scientists who don't think that GMO's are good for you. There is a lot of evidence about how glyphosate and GMO's mainly are there to cut weeding costs by soaking the fields in ever more herbicide.  This damages our microbiome and the ecology.  We have to come to them for their food. Great for them. Bad for us.

Many also question why US taxpayers pay for all payouts for damage from vaccines, that huge percentages of people get sick after they get vaccines, and that the number of government compelled and Big Pharma profit vaccines has dramatically increased, that they contain aluminum and mercury, and that many babies have gotten sick right after getting them.  

They want to stop these people from finding out about this information.  I don't want them to be stopped from finding out and deciding for themselves.

Apparently, we disagree.

John S
PDX OR
 
Chris Kott
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The information isn't going anywhere. It's still there. All that is required is some careful sifting, as has always been the case.

And as has always been the case, people will collect and highlight that which agrees with what they have decided to believe, and anything anyone says to the contrary must be part of the conspiracy.

One of the red flags I look for is when the language of an article seems comfortable using the shorthand "Big Pharma" to describe the pharmaceutical industry. It suggests a monolithic entity, not a bunch of different smaller ones motivated in different ways by the same thing: money.

To an extent, and up until the recent past, the last few years, really, pulling the wool over people's eyes was easy to do. You want them to smoke cigarettes? Have doctors tell them it's good for them. You want them to eat more sugar? Tell them it's crystallised energy. Are they not eating enough? Vilify those parts of nutrition responsible for making them feel full. Refine the grains. Put excess sugar and salt in everything, so real food tastes inferior by comparison, and the consumer will buy more processed goods.

But people have always questioned what they are told. Those numbers grow with dissatisfaction, but it's not always a direct, causal link. They might be dissatisfied with the decline of the middle class, with local and regional issues that have made their lives harder. They feel the need to express their frustrations, and so they do something to "stick it to the man," whether or not what they're doing is making any sense.

So they refuse to vaccinate. Instead of getting to the table and making legitimate concerns, such as the potential for harm to come from too many vaccines, too close together, they do things that lead to measles outbreaks, that escalate polarity and negative views of people who question the way in which vaccines are implemented, and lump them in with those whose opinions on the matter are less reason than unreasoning fear.

It's the science conversation all over again. A medical conversation needs to use the language of medicine. If you want to join a conversation in Portuguese, you had better be fluent, or bring a good translator. I don't care how fluent you may be in Esperanto or Klingon, unless it can be translated into something that everyone involved in the discussion can comprehend, and unless the basic concepts are understood in their native Portuguese, the conversation won't really go anywhere (which will probably happen, even with the best translator).

Oh, and the other ads and articles I won't mind missing? Those jade pussy eggs, and anything from that snakeoil company.

For those concerned with natural healing, I would suggest finding an herbalism school that works with your own personal level of purple. I would look for one whose advertising and outreach programs feature wildcrafting and harvesting and processing into medicines by different processes. Anyone interested in the Texas area can PM me, and I will send you info on my cousin's herbalism school. They do disaster outreach and educational forays in many places, but mostly stick to the Texas hill country, Austin, and the PNW on trips out.

Hopefully, this sort of thing will just result in medical treatments getting properly vetted before widespread adoption. Those going out of their way will still buy raw milk, and will still try to convert their spouse/sibling/neighbour.

I really don't have an answer, and I'm damned tired of those who are all sales pitches and snakeoil hiding in amongst the herbalists and healthy-food-from-healthy-soil advocates. I can't say I like what Google/Faceplant/Instawhatever are currently doing, but doing proper documented study on the fields under fire might help either elevate them as causes, or shed enough light that the cracks appear.

-CK
 
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Did this just turn into an 'ulcer factory' topic?

John, I'm trying that search engine mostly because they claim to not harvest personal information from my searches.
 
John Suavecito
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The point is that if you try to reach that information with their new algorithm, you will never get holistic herbal medicine information.  It goes to 6000 on the list.  Who goes through 6000 entries? No one. That's exactly the point.  Many natural health sites are having their traffic cut in half, on purpose, by those who don't want them to find out about inexpensive natural health care information.  The people who want to learn about it, won't find it on Google, Facebook, or Instagram. That's what most people use.   Just like magazines and TV shows limit their content on these topics because the big advertisers tell them to stop. You can't print that article.  You seem to be stating (anti-vaxxers) that anyone who questions US taxpayers covering vaccine liability (and they have already paid out in the millions) but giving all profits to the corporations is a monolith, but Big Pharma is not.  I don't think that's really accurate.

The point is to stop people from finding out, and that is the problem. If you can't find the information, you can't find out.  Let the people find it out and decide for themselves.

John S
PDX OR
 
Chris Kott
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I want to go another direction.

So let's say I am missing the point. There's more to this, obviously.

I realise that I am actually not thrilled that issues that I care about and think relevant have been caught up in this effort to protect, I suppose, the integrity of public opinion by trying to filter out the garbage.

The fact that there are other issues and subject matter caught up in the same way about which I am, shall we say, skeptical, isn't relevant to the issue of access to information.

As an access to information issue, I will hazard a guess to say that we are actually on the same side of this argument.

I wonder what effect this will have on Permies.com traffic?

-CK
 
garden master
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John Suavecito wrote:The point is that if you try to reach that information with their new algorithm, you will never get holistic herbal medicine information.  It goes to 6000 on the list.  Who goes through 6000 entries? No one. That's exactly the point.  Many natural health sites are having their traffic cut in half, on purpose, by those who don't want them to find out about inexpensive natural health care information.  The people who want to learn about it, won't find it on Google, Facebook, or Instagram. That's what most people use.   Just like magazines and TV shows limit their content on these topics because the big advertisers tell them to stop. You can't print that article.  You seem to be stating (anti-vaxxers) that anyone who questions US taxpayers covering vaccine liability (and they have already paid out in the millions) but giving all profits to the corporations is a monolith, but Big Pharma is not.  I see who you trust.

The point is to stop people from finding out, and that is the problem. If you can't find the information, you can't find out.  Let the people find it out and decide for themselves.

John S
PDX OR



I’m leaving my thoughts on GMO’s, corporate abuse, etc. at the door.

This is what concerns me. To take the information superhighway, and manipulate the code or algorithms to direct traffic and intentionally tailor search results one way or another and misdirect the masses is some kind of frightening. It seems like a good portion of the population is already spoon-fed tv news, but to take away fair and honest search results restricting ones ability to access information to make a choice or be informed is, well, I think it's Orwellian.
 
pollinator
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James Freyr - it is my understanding that they (search engines) already do that, and that this is just another layer of it. I'm not saying it's right or wrong, just that it has been happening for a long time already.

Finding good information on natural healing has always been a struggle, so many snake oil salesman out there, or mainstream medicine sites trying to pretend that they do natural healing. I've had to best luck with referrals from podcasts, from permies, or bloggers that I respect. There is so much garbage on the internet, one has to development a technique for filtering it all.
 
John Suavecito
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I believe in vetting.  That's the structure of science, and why we have discussions like these on permies.com and elsewhere. I think it's actually crucial to a democracy to be able to have it.  I just don't want it to pretend to be because it's about "fake news" and "real science" and have it really be because it doesn't make huge profits to the advertisers, who are controlling most of the media.  I think we need to call it out and act on it when we can, and that's what I'm doing. I don't need for people to have my same opinions on any of these questions, but if people can't get the information to make their own decisions, we will all lead to unconscious corporate control, which we have too much of anyway in my opinion.   In my estimation, the vast majority of people don't know that they are being pushed toward something that is only part of the information and the other half is hidden. I want them to be able to see the evidence and decide for themselves.
John S
PDX OR
 
gardener
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Some of the problems with filtering by the media giants are well documented.

I've used DuckDuckGo exlusively for a few years because I find it superior to the big popular search engines.
 
steward
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Puts on moderator hat...  I just moved this to the cider press due to some of the possibly inflammatory subjects broached.  Based on the intent of the original question, I think it would be best if we tried to focus on the aspect of getting information online, versus the pros, cons, right and wrong of the many subjects you could search for online.

Takes off moderator hat...  My wife has noticed it's harder to find some of her sources in the last couple of months.  We use duckduckgo but I think it's more for the privacy thing...
 
gardener
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Of the three services mentioned by the OP, I only use Google.
A quick search of some of these terms shows results from multiple viewpoints.
When are these changes scheduled to take effect?
 
John Suavecito
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These changes have already occurred.  The algorithm isn't public, so we don't know exactly who is sent to the bottom of the search list and who is allowed.  It's kind of like living in a dictatorship- what happened to that guy? Oh, he just disappeared. Don't mention his name again, and you won't disappear.  Other people are fine, up to the moment when they, or their information, disappears.

John S
PDX OR
 
Chris Kott
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Well then, I will ask: Do we know if there has been any significant change to site traffic here at Permies?

-CK
 
steward
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Mike asked me to pop in here and share permies traffic.  Just looking at traffic from google ...

In january, our traffic was about 20% higher than the year before.   Around march 20, that suddenly dropped to about the same as the year before.   Around April 29 it dropped to about 5% to 10% less than the year before.

Could be lots of reasons.  
 
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I don't know if permies has been affected. I know a lot of sites that have.
But I just ran the word "landrace" through duckduckgo, hit permies on the second page of results. Ran it through google, hit Joseph Lofthouse's website on page 4, by page 10 hadn't seen permies yet.
Running the word "permaculture"  permies is on first page of hits on duckduckgo, and second page on Google.

Very disturbing, the Google hit was a permies post I started. I don't use google, because I don't like being data-mined. I disapprove of it throwing those at me. I don't like that it knows me. And i have all cookies blocked, and run ad blockers etc. This is WHY I don't like them.

So, hard to tell.
 
Mike Jay
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I just tested "permaculture" on Duckduckgo and permies.com came up as the 8th link.  On Google permies.com was on page 4.  15th link on page 2 of Bing (if anyone uses that?).
 
garden master
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When I first started looking at herbal remedies, google would offer up articles on how the herb is purported to work first. Now I get a bunch of stuff telling me how dangerous the herb can be. Lets take capsicum.

Google wrote: Capsicum: Uses, Side Effects, Interactions, Dosage, and Warning
https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-945/capsicum
Capsicum, also known as red pepper or chili pepper, is an herb. The fruit of the capsicum plant is used to make medicine. Capsicum is most commonly used for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), osteoarthritis, and other painful conditions.



The first three are from the drug industry point of view.

In this case, there is only one Scary Warning post before the fluffy benefits blog posts. Used to be, herbalist blogs would be at the top, the type that give you the good and bad of an herb within a calm text.

Plants For a Future shows up on page 3.

Scientific papers start on page 4.

Things have changed. I don't like it.

 
John Suavecito
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I just tested "healing cancer with herbs" on 3 sites:

On duckduckgo, I got alternative sites for my first 5
Holistic labs, an integrative cancer place
The truth about cancer-alternative cancer site
Herbal remedies
Natural News Mike Adams alternative health
and Prevention magazine-gentle alternative

On Google, I got none of those.  I got all wealthy medical establishment Big Pharmas:
1.An ad with BOoks for sale
2. NCBI-studies which might consider both Govt run
3Cancer Research UK-Discouraging herbs-discussing herbal side effects, but not chemo side effects!
4 Savor health gentle nutritionists urging culinary herbs along with chemo
5Sloan Kettering-advising against alternative therapy unless your doctor says its good.

On Bing, It was mostly holistic:
1. Herbs for dog with cancer!
2. Dr. Rath-German alternative medicine
3. Holistic Labs
4. Cancer fighting stragies without chemo
5. Amazon-buy herbs.

When I went back to Bing after reading alternative cancer fighting strategies, they kicked it out of the top 5 and replaced it with a big pharma ad.

It is disturbing how different the results are and what we are allowed to see.

John S
PDX OR
 
Chris Kott
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I must say that after some diligent searching, I must corroborate what is being said about the effect of the algorithmic changes made. For most things, the first page, the entire page, is ads on Goofle.

But if these are the search engines we have to work with, it might be good to look at what each is good at doing.

For instance, My Goofle search for "Lawn Care" produced ads, mostly local-ish, mostly mainstream spray-it-and-forget-it solutions. Any search or subject matter that triggered its "let's drown this person in ads" feature would get a thumbs-down from me, but if it was still really good at pulling up white papers and stuff, I would probably still use it for that.

So what would the downsides of duckduckgo be, for instance?

-CK
 
Mike Barkley
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Goofle search. Luv it!!!

What's going on is very Orwellian, as some already mentioned.

I have found no problem with DuckDuckGo. It works well, it gives good results, it's as private as the internet can be these days, & it's not Goofle.
 
Chris Kott
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Or Facepalm. Or Instaglaze (still working on that one).

-CK
 
Pearl Sutton
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I have used duckduckgo for years, and hadn't cued up google search in ages till I did that comparison search. YUK. Nothing but ads and nonsense. No information. I see no downsides to duckduckgo, and it is definitely MUCH better than google in my eyes. The only google product I use is their maps, I like them better than any of the others. My adblockers have *.google.com blocked, with an exception for the map page.
I'm not a fan of data mining.
 
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This is scary stuff. Seems really Orwellian and creepy.

Natural News are now saying the tech giants are limiting the access to nutritional information that contradicts government recommendations. Doesn't seem far off from limiting access to information about permaculture and organic farming, as these contradict US government agricultural ideas.

I'd been appreciating the internet for being able to access alternative views to the mainstream, and that instead of watching television, teenagers are watching YouTube, but it seems these big corporations are now trying to give us the illusion of choice, while severely limiting access to any ideas beyond a very narrow range of views, and that soon enough YouTube will just resemble a corporate television channel, and Google search results limited to stuff that perpetuates the current sick care/ecosystem-destroying way of things.

I wonder if I should stop using gmail and Android now, in preparation for any nasty stuff Google could do with these...
 
Stacy Witscher
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Kate - Apple isn't better. Their default browser is Safari. When searching for the local Department of Motor Vehicles, we never could find the government site with that search engine, just a bunch of scammers trying to trick you.
 
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Kate Downham wrote:This is scary stuff. Seems really Orwellian and creepy...I wonder if I should stop using gmail and Android now, in preparation for any nasty stuff Google could do with these...


There is a long list of companies/programs that do this unfortunately. This link might be helpful https://prism-break.org/en/

 
master steward
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Try "Soy Allergies"
It's been fascinating how that has changed on the algorithms over the years.  
 
Pearl Sutton
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Jarret Hynd wrote:
There is a long list of companies/programs that do this unfortunately. This link might be helpful https://prism-break.org/en/


Interesting, good link! They have duckduckgo tagged as "nonfree" I have used it for years and have never paid anything, anyone know what they mean?
 
Jarret Hynd
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Pearl Sutton wrote:Interesting, good link! They have duckduckgo tagged as "nonfree" I have used it for years and have never paid anything, anyone know what they mean?


In regards to programs and code, "free" isn't about price, but about users' freedom. https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.en.html

DuckDuckGo has some proprietary elements to it, meaning we can't see how some of the search engine works, so they could be doing surveillance as well. However, their privacy policy has legal ramifications if they were found to be lying about it, such as the FTC coming after them, so it's likely they aren't doing anything nefarious.
 
r ranson
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wow.  Check out the difference between google and duckduckgo for "pea protein isolate"

 
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Another search engine that respects your privacy is Startpage.com I have been using them for a long time and have had no issues with them. Here are the first 5 links that comes up on this search engine when you look for "healing cancer with herbs".

Herbal medicine | Complementary and alternative therapy | Cancer ...
Are Herbs and Spice Beneficial for Lung Cancer Patients ...
Natural cures for breast cancer treatment - NCBI
6 Herbs and Spices for Cancer Prevention | Everyday Health
From pepper to garlic to ginger — some favorite ways to pep up your food may also protect you from cancer.

 
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