TriggerFinger


Google engineer confirms manual manipulation of search results


BreitbartSoftware engineer Mike Wacker, until recently an employee of Google, confirmed Breitbart News’ report that the tech giant reordered its YouTube search results for “Federal Reserve” following criticism by left-wing MSNBC host Chris Hayes.

In a tweet, Wacker confirmed the details of Breitbart’s report — that Google, which owns YouTube, manually added the term “Federal Reserve” to its blacklist of “controversial YouTube search queries” a day after Hayes complained about the original results, which featured a number of videos critical of the Fed.

Wacker previously authored an article on Medium.com in which he challenged Google CEO Sundar Pichai’s claim, made under oath before Congress, that the company doesn’t “manually intervene” in any search result.

Sundar Pichai's claim is, obviously, bullshit. He thought he was being clever by suggesting that google doesn't manually intervene in individual search results. Of course they don't. The request and response takes fractions of a second. No human is fast enough to do that.

What google does instead is set up rules that govern how search results are handled. Their search suggestions displayed while you type (autocomplete) are often missing obvious candidates for completion that show a partisan bias. There are lots of other ways they can mess with search results without manually altering every result that comes in. For example, they could be systematically training their algorithm to return fewer negative stories about Democrats because their developers don't want to read (or click on) negative stories about Democrats. Or systematically ranking right-leaning sites like Fox as having lower credibility than left-leaning sites like CNN or MSNBC.

This entry was published Tue Aug 13 06:47:22 CDT 2019 by TriggerFinger and last updated 2019-08-13 06:47:22.0. [Tweet]

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