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Leaked Docs Show Google Contractors Suppressed Alternative Media, Google Confirms

Published: April 18, 2017
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Source: Claire Bernish

Leaked documents now reveal a plan by search engine behemoth Google to censor alternative media through the blatant suppression of search results — and, for all intents and purposes, the censoring appears part of the political establishment’s plan to quash dissent.

Documents obtained by InfoWars’ Mike Cernovich indeed show a Google contractor instructing staff to rate prominent but controversial website, InfoWars, as “low-to-medium” in reliability, with articles frequently having “been debunked.”

Although Cernovich and other InfoWars staff have indeed been known to occasionally embellish the facts, Business Insider reports,

“A Google representative appeared to confirm the validity of Cernovich’s report, linking Business Insider to his Medium post.

 

“A vendor hired by Google employs contractors to rate the websites that appear in its search results — the rating is used to improve search quality, helping Google’s automated search algorithm prioritize higher-rated, reliable information.

“In examining how the staffers working as website ‘raters’ should evaluate a ‘rather poor site,’ the contractor pointed to InfoWars, advising raters to consider the quality of the information and its reputation.”

image: http://thefreethoughtproject.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/info1.png

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While Google does employ contractors that way to improve an automated algorithm, the company noted to Business Insider it had not given instructions citing specific websites to use as examples in quality ratings; rather, it provides general guidelines for improving searches.

 

“In this instance, we have confirmed that a vendor we work with sent out more detailed instructions to some raters without our knowledge, which included references to specific sites,” a Google representative told Business Insider. “This is in conflict with the intent of our guidelines and the vendor has taken action to remove these references in their training module.”

InfoWars, which has been skewered for publishing articles both leaning alt-right and of the conspiracy variety, was understandably infuriated over the behind-the-scenes — if, perhaps, technically unintentional — method of censorship by suppression.

On Monday’s Alex Jones show, Cernovich enjoined followers to protest the startling censorship of InfoWars by protesting peacefully outside Google’s headquarters.

Just over one month ago, Google announced its answer to improving the quality of searches by battling faulty information and disreputable sites with a veritable army of contractors rating items to place trusted news sites at the top.

“We’re explicitly avoiding the term ‘fake news,’ because we think it is too vague,” said senior Google engineer, Paul Haahr, who works on search quality. “Demonstrably inaccurate information, however, we want to target.”

READ MORE:  Facts Force WaPost to Retract Viral Story on Russia Hacking US Power Grid -- It was All Lies

However, like Facebook, or Twitter, or YouTube, what Google fails to mention about pushing ‘low quality’ sites to the bottom rung, is the punishing effect it takes on the flow of the free press — and the potential to snuff silent a growing body of independent media reporting largely unbiased, legitimate news items.

In fact, InfoWars might be the perfect example of why selective, subjective suppression allows the State and private companies to censor information painting the U.S. in an unfavorable light — or, worse, dissenting opinion, entirely.

This isn’t to say false reports, disinformation, and so-called ‘click bait’ contribute anything of value to the world of 24/7 news — indeed, Alex Jones’ InfoWars has a reputation for publishing items of highly questionable accuracy.

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