Google vs search: how the service will change the results after the scandals and tragedies

Nikolay Ovchinnikov

Google banned American users to search for the firearm after the shooting in Parkland. Tell how service in the world censored or changed the search results after the scandals and tragedies, and remind, why not all trust Google.

For I don’t love Google?

Google has been repeatedly accused of bias in search engine. In February 2017, the Commission for protection of competition of India (CCI) fined the company $21,17 million for the use of a search engine to the unfair promotion of its own resources and partner organizations. In 2017, Google received a fine of $2.7 billion for the same from the European Commission.

In the spring of 2015 Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University and the International Institute of computer science suspected Google of gender discrimination. It turned out that the company gives the men targeted ads with offers of jobs with a higher salary.

In November 2016 the researchers of the service found out that Google gives preference to links to “neutral” and “liberal” resources. In December 2015 scientists at the University of Maryland found that when searching candidates in US presidents Google gives more results with candidates from the Democrats than with the Republicans.

SourceFed news organization said that Google hides negative tips when prompted about Hillary Clinton and not hide in the case of requests for Donald Trump. In the company deny the accusations and say that the search works by “computer algorithms that take into account hundreds of factors.” In Google believe that the results of a search engine “reflect the content and information available on the Internet.”

In addition to the bias Google is accused of spreading false information. In July 2017 the American Alliance of news media asked the U.S. Congress to give the opportunity to bargain collectively with Google and Facebook. Services were accused of “basis of digital duopoly” in the segment of Internet advertising and the decline of standards of quality of news and the dissemination of fakes.

According to the company Eidelman, 63% of U.S. residents trust search engines as a source of news and information. For comparison, the journalists trusted by only 44% of respondents.

As Google removed the information from search engine and other services?

In December 2016, Google turned off the autocompletion in the search for the word “Holocaust”. The reason was the accusations from the newspaper the Guardian. It turns out that if you start to type in search line “did the hol”, the first will pop up the prompt “did the holocaust happen” (“did the Holocaust really?”). In the US, Google has disabled the autocompletion with the Holocaust, but not in Europe.

In August 2017 the Google owned video service Youtube has started to reduce the popularity of the “controversial” video. Their content does not violate the rules of the site, but it is possible to calculate religious propaganda or propaganda of racial and ethnic superiority. For example, such video will not be able to comment or like. What video is it, Google did not specify. Then Google, among others, was deprived of hosting the American neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer: that in the end had to move to the darknet.

In July 2015 Facebook and Instagram immediately noted two black users as “gorillas”. The company apologized. In January 2018, the Wired journalists discovered that the company decided not to change the algorithm, but simply banned from Google Photos to tag images tags with the names of the monkeys and therefore it cannot be found — that the program will accidentally be tagged one of them with dark skin.

In January 2018, Google banned its voice assistant Google Assistant to answer religious questions. The company explained that the voice assistant is voiced by the obtained search results, and it could contain spam and insults. To avoid awkward situations, Google has decided to disable Assistant the opportunity to talk about Jesus, Buddha — all to answer any religious questions.

After the shooting at the school of American city Parkland (FL) Google Shopping has ceased to give search results for any query containing the word “gun” (gun) and its synonyms, in the USA. The ban on the issuance touched and goods not related to the weapons, such as the songs of other bands the Sex Pistols and Gun’s Roses. Even Google Shopping has removed the is a semi-automatic rifle AR-15: it a Nicholas Cruz was shot 17 people in Parkland.