Executive Chairman of Google’s parent company Alphabet, Eric Schmidt, says Google will “engineer” specific algorithms for RT and Sputnik to make their articles less prominent on the search engine’s news delivery services.
In response to Schmidt’s declaration of censorship towards RT and Sputnik (for no declared or documented reasons), Sputnik News reports that the head of the Russian media watchdog (Roskomnadzor) Alezander Zharov said that Roskomnadzor will protect Russian’ interests.
Schmidt was publicly outed as a Hillary hack by Wikileaks during the 2016 US election campaign, which would explain his axe to grind with what he perceives as Russian propaganda. This would make Schmidt a stupid and naive Silicon Valley billionaire who actually buys into the made up Russia meddling story.
Then again Schmidt’s censorship against RT and Sputnik may be nothing more than Hillary and the globalist gang giving their marching orders to Schmidt, so as to continue to cover for Hillary’s pathetic election lose, and make sure that no Trump surprises happen in the future…because the last thing globalists like Hillary and Schmidt want is for votes to actually count.
“I met with Eric Schmidt tonight,” Clinton mafia top exec John Podesta told Hillary campaign manager-in-waiting Robby Mook in April 2014, more than a year before Clinton announced her candidacy for president.
The e-mail, published by Wikileaks, detailed the Alphabet chairman’s interest in backing Hillary Clinton’s presidential run…
“He’s ready to fund, advise recruit talent, etc. He was more deferential on structure than I expected. Wasn’t pushing to run through one of his existing firms. Clearly wants to be head outside advisor, but didn’t seem like he wanted to push others out. Clearly wants to get going. He’s still in DC tomorrow and would like to meet with you if you are in DC in the afternoon. I think it’s worth doing.”
To be fair, Schmidt told the audience that he was “very strongly not in favor of censorship,” because that is now how Google “operates.” Instead Schmidt and Google engineers will opt for suppression of speech, over censorship of speech, pushing RT and Sputnik News articles to the 126th page of search results.
Propaganda is not about what is said, but about what is NOT said…or in this case, not about what is found, but what is NOT found.
As Google sorts out its Russia hysteria affliction, try using DuckDuckGo. Just as good as Google without the political drama.
“We are working on detecting and de-ranking those kinds of sites – it’s basically RT and Sputnik,” Schmidt said during a Q & A session at the Halifax International Security Forum in Canada on Saturday, when asked about whether Google facilitates “Russian propaganda.”
“We are well of aware of it, and we are trying to engineer the systems to prevent that [the content being delivered to wide audiences]. But we don’t want to ban the sites – that’s not how we operate.”
The discussion focused on the company’s popular Google News service, which clusters the news by stories, then ranks the various media outlets depending on their reach, article length and veracity, and Google Alerts, which proactively informs subscribers of new publications.
RT has criticized the proposed move – whose timescale has not been publicized – as arbitrary and a form of censorship.
“Good to have Google on record as defying all logic and reason: facts aren’t allowed if they come from RT, ‘because Russia’ – even if we have Google on Congressional record saying they’ve found no manipulation of their platform or policy violations by RT,” Sputnik and RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan said in a statement.
During the discussion, Schmidt claimed that he was “very strongly not in favor of censorship,” but said that he has faith in “ranking” without acknowledging if the system might serve the same function. Schmidt, who joined Google in 2001, said that the company’s algorithm was capable of detecting “repetitive, exploitative, false, and weaponized” info, but did not elaborate on how these qualities were determined.
The Alphabet chief, who has been referred to by Hillary Clinton as a “longtime friend,” added that the experience of “the last year” showed that audiences could not be trusted to distinguish fake and real news for themselves.
“We started with the default American view that ‘bad’ speech would be replaced with ‘good’ speech, but the problem found in the last year is that this may not be true in certain situations, especially when you have a well-funded opponent who is trying to actively spread this information,” he told the audience.
Schmidt advised Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign on digital operations, and offered the same services to Hillary Clinton’s campaign in 2015, according to several emails from campaign chairman John Podesta’s private account, published by WikiLeaks last October.
On election night 2016, Schmidt was spotted at the Clinton campaign headquarters with a “staff” badge, according to a photo submitted to Politico.
RT America registered under FARA earlier this month, after being threatened by the US Department of Justice with arrests and confiscations of property if it failed to comply. The broadcaster is fighting the order in court.
Google’s initiative will have a direct impact on “freedom of speech and thought” in the US, believes Prof. Dan Kovalik, from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.
“It is a form of censorship, and the idea is to lead readers away from RT content. And it will have an impact on the discourse in this country,” Kovalik told RT. “When [you start] censoring anyone, they are going to censor everyone, and I think everyone in the US should be appalled by this and very concerned.”
Google is dancing to the tune of the US government as part of the broader campaign to demonize Russia, political commentator and TV host Steve Malzberg told RT.
“This is all about the fact that Russia is right now the enemy. Russia has been made the enemy by the left, the Democrats and, by definition, the media. The media has been nonstop for a year now about ‘evil Russia.’ Anything associated with the ‘evil Russia’ will incur the wrath of the government,” Malzberg said. “It is because they have been called in before Congress and because of this witch hunt that is going on… They don’t want to risk the wrath of Congress, and that is the problem.”
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.