Stossel: Does Silicon Valley manipulate users?

From John Stossel at Reason:

 

 

Leaked emails show some Google engineers blaming their company for Trump’s 2016 win, suggesting that the site should censor outlets like The Daily Caller and Breitbart.

Google says the company never did that, but for many people, it raises the question: could Google executives flip an election?

“Google’s senior management was heavily in favor of Hillary Clinton,” The Creepy Line writer Peter Schweizer tells John Stossel. “Their ability to manipulate the algorithm is something that they’ve demonstrated the ability to do in the past… and the evidence from academics who monitored 2016 was clearly that they did.”

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Schweizer’s film features psychologist Robert Epstein, whose research claimed that people rated Google’s top search results in 2016 as more positive to Hilary Clinton than to Donald Trump.

Stossel says that it doesn’t prove that Google’s results were biased. It may just be that major media outlets ran more positive headlines about Clinton, and since Google’s results rely on the major media, that would bring more positive Clinton headlines, even without any bias on Google’s part.

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Even if Google’s search algorithm is fair, major social media outlets do manipulate us by determining what we can not see.

The film plays a clip of psychologist Jordan Peterson, who points out: “They’re not using unbiased algorithms to do things like search for unacceptable content on twitter and on YouTube and on Facebook–those aren’t unbiased at all. They’re built specifically to filter out whatever’s bad.”

Stossel notes that Google and Facebook employ human content monitors, some of whom despise conservatives, to determine what is “bad”…

Continue reading at Reason…

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