After watching the video and reading blog about Crap Detection 101 by Rheingold, I definitely realized I rely way too heavily on the basic and obvious components of websites, webpages, and blogs when I’m looking for information on the internet. It made me question the techniques I use to decide whether or not a website is credible to use as a source and also gave me some new ideas and websites to think about using for future research.
I really took interest into how much Rheingold stresses about knowing who the author is; I think I found this particularly interesting because although I’ve known how important the author is in finding credible sources I’ve never really thought much about looking into their history and seeing what else they’ve done and what other critics think of them. Also, I remember being in middle school and even high school when I would do research and not be able to find an author, teachers often saying “Well, just fill the citation of the source to the best of your ability with the other information given to you.” I don’t think any teacher every told me about WHO IS which is a website that Rheingold mentions in is video. The website allows to look up the author of a webpage or website in which none is stated. This website would have come in handy for times when I couldn’t find an author and wanted to know who was behind a website and for what purpose. I wanted to know more about who is but couldn’t find the exact one Rheingold mentioned or showed in the video. Instead I found a website that explained a little more about what WHO IS data is used for. The website I found also has a search engine, so you can try out a domain name if you wanted and see the results of the website you put in! I tried the martinlutherking.org that Rheingold also mentioned in the video. If you’re interested, check it out!
In general, Rheingold mentions a lot about how important it is to know the author and the purpose behind the website the author created. In his blog he mentions that,
“Who is the author?” Is the root question.
He also says to make sure you don’t just look at the critics of this author either, but to also look at their work and what they do. Rheingold also makes note to look at what sources are being used. There is a lot that goes into determining whether or not a source is credible but I believe by simply answering Rheingold’s “root question” he is suggesting that you can find out a lot about a website and/or source just by asking yourself to dig a little deeper with one question. (Who is the author?) The question has many places it take can you and will teach you a lot about the kind of website or source you could be using, even if it looks professional on the surface you don’t know what’s behind it until you take the time to look around and learn.