Commentary

The Pernicious Impact of Google Search Bias

Jeff Charles
By Jeff Charles | May 14, 2019 | 12:23 PM EDT

(Photo by Carsten Koall/Getty Images)

At first glance, the headline of this piece might seem like one of those articles that simply tells you what you already know. After all, everyone is aware of Google’s left-wing bias, right? But no, this is not another “water is wet” article. Most people on the right have seen how the company’s search engine favors progressive sites. But many don’t understand the extent to which its algorithms skew the traffic and how this could potentially influence elections beyond 2020.

The Columbia Journalism Review conducted an audit of Google’s search results and discovered that the company’s bias might be having a more pernicious impact than expected. With the decline in the level of traffic referred by social media companies, it is apparent that Google quickly is becoming the digital entity that will have the most influence on the opinions of the American public, and conservative voices are on the chopping block.

Google Becoming New Face of Censorship?

According to the Columbia Journalism Review’s study, Google’s search engine “accounts for nearly half of external referral traffic — traffic, that is, that comes from platforms, apps, and other outside sources — to news sites.”

This means that Google provides more referral traffic to news sites than Twitter, Facebook, and other social media outlets. It is also important to point out that Facebook, in particular, gradually is withdrawing from circulating news reports. This essentially makes Google the most powerful digital entity in existence with its ability to decide what information the American public sees at any given time.

(Chart Courtesy of Liberty Nation)

The researchers analyzed the “Top Stories” box on Google’s search results. These stories appear at the very top of the page when you type in a query and news articles relevant to the search term are displayed. They explained how they came to their conclusions: “In total, we collected 6,302 unique links to news articles shown in the Top Stories box. For each of those links we count an article impression each time one of those links appears.”

The data revealed that more than half of the impressions went to only 20 different news sources. The top 20% of these sources represented 86% of the total number of impressions while the top three outlets accounted for 23%. Prepare to be shocked: The top three news organizations were CNN, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. To put it in plain English, Google directs the bulk of its users to progressive establishment media outlets. The table shows the rest of their results.

As you can see, Fox News is the only non-leftist organization on the list. This chart has chilling ramifications for the conservative movement, which already struggles to have its voice heard amid unfair censorship and other initiatives designed to suppress right-leaning views.

Google has not been forthcoming about the inner workings of its algorithms. But given these findings, it’s difficult to believe that the company is not deliberately skewing its search results to favor a particular political agenda. So what is happening here?

Google’s Becoming More Powerful

Google has become one of the most powerful companies in the world, and it appears that its ability to affect opinions is also on the rise. Because of this, it is likely that the company will become more brazen in its campaign to magnify progressive views while minimizing conservative ideas. Studies have shown that search engines have a profound impact on voting, and the leaders of Google understand this.

Facebook and Twitter recently banned several right-leaning figures, many of whom did not engage in hate speech or extremism on their platforms. But this does not come as a surprise since many on the left still blame Facebook for Trump’s 2016 victory. Perhaps Google will ensure that it does not earn the same level of ire that social media faced in the aftermath of the election.

Of course, nobody can forget the leaked video showing leaders within the company weeping because the Big Bad Orange Man won the election. It is evident that Trump derangement syndrome has completely infected Google; for this reason, conservatives must find a way to subvert its efforts. Progressives already have a hold on most of how Americans communicate.

Conservatives have found another way to make their views known through alternative media. But if Google is going to step up its efforts to snuff out right-leaning opinions, conservatives must find out how to fight back. Pushing for regulations on tech companies might seem like a viable solution, but the long-term consequences might backfire. Instead, the right must figure out other means to counteract the left’s attempts to shut down opposing views.

Jeff Charles is Race Relations & Media Affairs Correspondent at LibertyNation.com.

Editor's Note: This piece was originally published by Liberty Nation.

Sponsored Links