According to a recent survey, more than forty percent of Americans distrust Facebook and TikTok, but sixty-five percent believe Google to be trustworthy.
ZDNet reports that according to a survey of 1,057 American residents by SeoClarity to gauge trust in tech companies, forty percent of American’s are distrustful of Facebook and TikTok while many appear to trust Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and Apple. Google edged out Amazon as the most trusted company among the Masters of the Universe.
According to SeoClarity’s survey, the majority of U.S. citizens believe that social media firms need regulation but have huge faith in Google. ZDNet reports that according to the survey:
- 65.7% of US residents say Google is trustworthy followed by Amazon at 65.1%, Microsoft at 64.9% and Apple at 63.6% and Samsung at 62.3%.
- 1 in 5 Americans will always trust Google results.
- 61% believe medical answers from Google have been vetted by medical professionals.
Other key figures in the report state:
- 43% of US residents distrust TikTok and 42.6% distrust Facebook.
- 72.5% of Americans believe search engines and social media companies have a responsibility to fact check content on their sites.
- 62% of Americans think search and social media companies need more regulation with 25% neutral.
While many appear to place great trust in Google, Breitbart News has reported extensively on why Google is one of the biggest threats to free speech online. While companies such as Facebook and Twitter can silence users by deleting or blocking their accounts, Google can manipulate the information that users see and have access to.
Breitbart News reported extensively on a leaked Google briefing called “The Good Censor” which outlines how Google censors certain information. Breitbart News reporter Allum Bokhari wrote in October of 2018:
In “The Good Censor,” an 85-page briefing leaked to Breitbart News from inside Google, the company admits that the role of censor is associated with the role of publisher – a categorization that arguably should open tech platforms up to immense legal risk.
The briefing was the product of extensive research on the part of Google. This included expert interviews with MIT Tech Review editor-in-chief Jason Pontin, Atlantic staff writer and tech critic Franklin Foer, and academic Kalev Leetaru. 35 cultural observers and 7 cultural leaders from seven countries on five continents were consulted to produce it. It can be read in full here.
Responding to the leak, Google said the document should be considered internal research, and not an official company position.
The briefing admits that tech platforms including Google, Facebook, and Twitter underwent a “shift towards censorship” over the past few years.
On page 14, the briefing acknowledges that free speech was initially part of the “DNA” of these platforms, which used to prioritize the creation of “unmediated marketplaces of ideas.”
The briefing associates this earlier role with the role of “aggregator” and “platform.” But now, says the briefing, tech firms prioritize the creation of “well-ordered spaces for safety and civility” as they have “gradually shifted away from unmediated free speech and towards censorship and moderation.”
In September of 2020, Breitbart News reported that Google refused to show negative results within searches related to Black Lives Matter. Breitbart News reported:
Google search suggestions are usually generated automatically, based on how often and how recently people are typing in specific searches.
A search spelling out “Black Lives Matter” returns a few results which again are positive in nature.
On DuckDuckGo, Google’s privacy-focused competitor, searching for “BLM is ” generates a normal list of suggestions, some of which have negative connotations.
In October of 2020, Breitbart News reported that Google was suppressing Breitbart News in its search results. Allum Bokhari reported:
In July, Breitbart News published data showing that Breitbart’s Google search visibility is down 99 percent compared to the same period in 2016.
RealClearPolitics later published data corroborating this, and showing that the same silent expulsion from Google search results has happened to a variety of other conservative news websites as well.
It appears that Breitbart News links are being hidden on Google searches even when users search for the exact string of words in an original Breitbart headline. When links to Breitbart stories do appear, it is often below obscure websites that plagiarize Breitbart’s content.
Search ranking is critical for web traffic from Google. The search analytics industry has found that the top three search results on Google drive over 70 percent of clicks.
In November of 2020, Breitbart News reported that Breitbart stories relating to Joe Biden were still being suppressed across Google:
Google has suppressed Breitbart News stories about Joe Biden all the way through to election day, despite it being reported on over five months ago.
Clicks and impressions to Breitbart News from Google searches for “Joe Biden” are still at zero, where they have remained for the past seven months.
As the following chart shows, clicks and impressions to Breitbart News from “Joe Biden” Google searches displayed a healthy pattern of activity until the middle of 2020, when they suddenly flatlined.
As Breitbart News reported several months ago, the plunge first occurred after a major update to Google’s search algorithm in May 2020.
Despite the fact that Breitbart News reported it, Google has neither fixed the issue nor commented on it.
Searches for “Hunter Biden” show a similar pattern, with far more clicks and impressions before Google’s May update, even though the vast majority of public attention on scandals related to the former VP’s son came relatively recently.
In November of 2020 around the time of the U.S. presidential election, psychologist and search engine expert Dr. Robert Epstein appeared on Tucker Carlson Tonight where he alleged that Google could have shifted a minimum of six million votes in the election.
“First of all, we had 733 field agents in three key swing states this year: Arizona, North Carolina, and Florida, and we preserved more than 500,000 ephemeral experiences… That’s about 30 times more data than we got in 2016,” said Epstein.
“Google search results were strongly biased in favor of liberals and Democrats. This was not true on Bing or Yahoo. The bias was being shown to pretty much every demographic group we looked at, including conservatives…. Conservatives got slightly more bias in their search results than liberals did. How do you account for that?”
“We also found what seems to be a smoking gun. That is, we found a period of days when the vote reminder on Google’s homepage was being sent only to liberals — not one of our conservative field agents received a vote reminder during those days.”
Breitbart News has reported extensively on Google’s search engine manipulation, read more at Breitbart Tech here.
Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address firstname.lastname@example.org