Google gets caught debating the manipulation of search results on ideological grounds:
Google employees debated whether to bury conservative media outlets in the company’s search function as a response to President Donald Trump’s election in 2016, internal Google communications obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation reveal.
The Daily Caller and Breitbart were specifically singled out as outlets to potentially bury, the communications reveal.
Trump’s election in 2016 shocked many Google employees, who had been counting on Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to win.
Communications obtained by TheDCNF show that internal Google discussions went beyond expressing remorse over Clinton’s loss to actually discussing ways Google could prevent Trump from winning again.
“This was an election of false equivalencies, and Google, sadly, had a hand in it,” Google engineer Scott Byer wrote in a Nov. 9, 2016, post reviewed by TheDCNF.
Byer falsely labeled The Daily Caller and Breitbart as “opinion blogs” and urged his coworkers to reduce their visibility in search results.
“How many times did you see the Election now card with items from opinion blogs (Breitbart, Daily Caller) elevated next to legitimate news organizations? That’s something that can and should be fixed,” Byer wrote.“I think we have a responsibility to expose the quality and truthfulness of sources – because not doing so hides real information under loud noises,” he continued….
The discussion about whether to bury conservative media outlets isn’t the first evidence that some Google employees have sought to manipulate search results for political ends. After Trump announced his initial travel ban in January 2017, Google employees discussed ways to manipulate search results in order to push back against the president’s order.
A group of employees brainstormed ways to counter “islamophobic, algorithmically biased results from search terms ‘Islam’, ‘Muslim’, ‘Iran’, etc,” as well as “prejudiced, algorithmically biased search results from search terms ‘Mexico’, ‘Hispanic’, ‘Latino’, etc.”
Well, at least they’re not threatening to physically attack any crypto-Trump supporters discovered in their midst again. Merely undermining the core purpose of the company’s existence is pretty mild in comparison. The astonishing thing is that Google continues to employ these lunatics despite knowing perfectly well that they are actively conspiring against the company’s best interests.
But that’s good news, because it means that Google is converged to the point that it is increasingly unable to perform its primary functions and will eventually be replaced. I already find Duck Duck Go entirely suitable for all my search needs and Protonmail is getting pretty close to being able to replace Gmail.