Googlegate: Is Google scrubbing bad news from Hillary Clinton search results?
With Hilary Clinton coming off her big win in California, thus clinching the Democratic nomination, this week has been the best the Clinton campaign has had for a long time. Until now. Thanks to some excellent journalism by the good people at SourceFed, evidence has arisen of some deeply unethical and manipulative practices regarding the way Google has been structuring its search results in favor of Hillary Clinton. Below is the full video detailing the GoogleGate scandal:
Does the fact that a startup backed by former Google CEO Eric Schmidt imply a link between the campaign and his former company? And just how much can Google search results really influence an election anyway?
It turns out quite a lot. In a 2014 study on the Search Engine Manipulation Effect (SEME), researchers found that Google’s search algorithm could easily shift the votes of undecided voters by 20 percent or more. Some demographics even had their votes shifted by up to 80 percent. The content that those undergoing the experiment was never changed, merely the order in which it was presented. Researchers speculated that Google has the power to flip the results of nearly 25 percent of national elections worldwide.
So what does this all mean? Did Google and the Clinton campaign collude together in this incredibly unethical and successful manipulation of voters? Is GoogleGate a scandal or a mere conspiracy theory? How else has Google manipulated its users in the past for its own ends? Unfortunately we have no answers to these questions. All we as voters can do is strive to stay informed, and be wary of where we are getting our information. It looks like that now includes Google.