Can You Trust the Internet for Chocolate Information?
One of my goals when I first started writing about chocolate was to make sure that whatever I wrote about cocoa and chocolate was true and accurate to the best of my abilities.
Nothing has changed, now 20 years on – that’s still my goal.
I don’t have a lot of ego in any position I take about the facts I present so I am happy to publicly admit when I am wrong, to make changes to what I write where I can, and to acknowledge the source(s) of new information.
What I have found over the course of my research and social media moderating duties (here on the TheChocolateLife and elsewhere) is that many people do not share my concerns for getting it right.
Here are a couple of examples I've run into recently on YouTube and elsewhere. My ask is that you watch the videos in their entirety and then comment on what you think is wrong in the videos.
The Forgotten History of Chocolate Candy by The History Guy
I have liked the style and approach of many of these videos, which are about history that deserves to be remembered. In this video, the presenter makes some basic mistakes while being right about some really very obscure points. Hint: One of the mistakes is about what alkalization achieves.
Dark Chocolate Benefits - Bitter Dark Chocolate Health Benefits You Wouldn’t Believe Exist by Dr Gus
Please do not get me started on how much is wrong with this video.
My first observation is that Dr Gus may not actually have a medical degree though he claims to be a conventional doctor in addition to being a naturopath and offering nutritional advice. One of my major issues about the content of the video is conflating cocoa with chocolate. Another is that in the comments he reveals a real lack of understanding of how chocolate is made, claiming, among other things, that nibs should be avoided because they are processed. Like chocolate isn’t? Furthermore most of his comments are boilerplate cut and paste and shill for his vitamins and online consulting services.
The History of Chocolate by Deanna Pucciarelli via TedEd
If you can’t rely on the veracity of a TED talk what is this world coming to?
Deanna Pucciarelli is an associate professor of nutrition and dietetics in Ball State’s Department of Nutrition and Health Science. She is not a historian. While this video does cover some very interesting history there are some simple, obvious, factual errors here.
Your Mission ...
... should you decide to accept it, of course, is to comment down below on the three videos. What do you find to be incorrect? What’s not clear or misleading? What do you think is credible? Are there concepts that you think need to be expanded upon – where questions are raised you’d like to know more about?