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Intro

Web evaluation

A typical Google search will yield around 500 million results!
Which ones are reliable? How do you know?
The criteria on this page can help you evaluate your web results.

 

Don't trust everything that is written. Not even this warning. Check it out for yourself.

Web site evaluation criteria

Of all the different types of websites, some will want to educate you, sell you something, or convince you they know better. Here are examples of sites. 

  • Commercial  business – sales
  • Informational
  • Hoaks and jokes – entertainment – advertisement
  • Advocacy
  • Increase awareness
  • News
  • Education 
  • Personal
  • Games
  • Organisations

Click on the name of the criteria to see a web example.

AUTHORITY
Who is the author of the site? Is he credible? Can you contact the author?

Click on the name of the criteria to see a web example.

ACCURACY
Can you verify the information presented? How similar or different is the information compared to other sites on that topic?

Click on the name of the criteria to see a web example.

CURRENCY
Does it say when the information was last updated? Are all the links live?

Click on the name of the criteria to see a web example.

COVERAGE
Does it give information on all aspects of the topic? Does the information seem complete? Is there any depth to the information

Click on the name of the criteria to see a web example.

OBJECTIVITY
Is there more than 1 point of view represented? What's the intent of the site? Does it try to inform you or sell you something? Are there signs of a hoax, revisionism, hate, propaganda, bias, misinformation, publicity, etc.

EXERCISE 1
Evaluate any 3 of the following sites on Depression and judge the "quality" of each one based on its strenghts and weaknesses. Support your argument with examples.


EXERCISE 2
Choose one of the following topics and evaluate the site using the criteria we discussed. If you still have time, choose a second topic.

Click on the name of the tool to see a web example.

MEDIA BIAS/FACT CHECK
An online media bias resource that informs on 1) where a source sits on the political spectrum, right, right-centre, etc., 2) if its content is questionable, 3) how it ranks on the world press freedom scale... Check their "Methodology" link to find out how they measure the bias factor.

TINYEYE
Tinyeye is a reverse photo (image search and recognition) tool to find out where your image appears on the Internet.

WHOIS.NET
Go to whois.net, then enter the domain name to find out who owns the site.

LINK SEARCH
A  [link: ] search will show you all the various web sites that link to it.
E.g., [link:martinlutherking.org]

HOAXKILLER (French site)
There are a lot of hoaxes on the internet and Hoaxkiller.fr was created to help you spot those hoaxes. It can be searched by keywords or by pasting text (e.g., Disparition Cassandra Huet).

Hoax-Slayer
Tells you about the latest mail hoaxex and internet scams.

SNOPES
Urban legends debunked.

WAYBACK MACHINE
Browse the largest Internet archive and see what web sites looked like in their past lives!

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