in Featured World News

4 Facts About Donald Trump’s Claim That Google Is Meddling in Elections

Lucas Nolanby Lucas Nolan

In a recent series of tweets, President Donald Trump criticized Google and accused the Silicon Valley giant of “very illegal” acts to subvert the 2020 election. The media claim there is “no evidence” to Trump’s claims, so Breitbart News has pulled together four key sources supporting Trump’s assertions.

President Donald Trump posted a series of tweets today in which he brought up a number of accusations against tech giant Google, calling the alleged acts “all very illegal,” and warning about the possibility of election interference in 2020.

President Trump claimed that Google CEO Sundar Pichai visited the Oval Office where he alleged that Google was not involved in helping the Chinese military and that Google did not alter search results during the 2016 election. The President’s tweets can be seen below:

The President also thanked author of Clinton Cash and Breitbart News Senior Contributor Peter Schweizer in another tweet:

President Trump also referenced former Google engineer Kevin Cernekee, who stated in a recent interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson that there is a possibility that Google employees will attempt to influence the 2020 election. Cernekee told Carlson:

I do believe so. I think that’s a major threat. They have openly stated that they think 2016 was a mistake. They thought Trump should have lost in 2016. They really want Trump to lose in 2020. That’s their agenda. They have very biased people running every level of the company. They have quite a bit of control over the political process. That’s something we should really worry about.

Reuter’s report on Trump’s tweet claims his allegations are “without evidence.” Breitbart News has pulled together four key sources of evidence for Trump’s tweets that show far from being “without evidence,” Trump has plenty of evidence for his concerns:

1) Google’s plan for the future: “The Good Censor”

Breitbart News has previously published internal Google documents, titled “The Good Censor” which outlines how the firm believes that the “American tradition” of free speech is no longer viable. Breitbart News reporter Allum Bokhari wrote in October of 2018:

Despite leaked video footage showing top executives declaring their intention to ensure that the rise of Trump and the populist movement is just a “blip” in history, Google has repeatedly denied that the political bias of its employees filter into its products.

But the 85-page briefing, titled “The Good Censor,” admits that Google and other tech platforms now “control the majority of online conversations” and have undertaken a “shift towards censorship” in response to unwelcome political events around the world.

Examples cited in the document include the 2016 election and the rise of Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) in Germany.

Responding to the leak, an official Google source said the document should be considered internal research, and not an official company position.

The briefing labels the ideal of unfettered free speech on the internet a “utopian narrative” that has been “undermined” by recent global events as well as “bad behavior” on the part of users. It can be read in full below.

It acknowledges that major tech platforms, including Google, Facebook and Twitter initially promised free speech to consumers. “This free speech ideal was instilled in the DNA of the Silicon Valley startups that now control the majority of our online conversations,” says the document.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) grilled Google representatives on the Good Censor during a hearing before Congress in July, Breitbart News wrote at the time:

Cruz, who has repeatedly criticized tech companies for claiming the legal privileges of neutral platforms while behaving like politically partisan publishers, drew attention to parts of the document that reference Section 230, the law that grants neutral platforms legal immunity for lawsuits regarding user-generated content — a lucrative protection that non-neutral publishers do notenjoy.

“[The document] describes how under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, tech firms have legal immunity for the majority of content posted on their platforms. This protection has empowered YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit to create spaces for free speech without fear of legal action.”

“So Google itself understood, on the face of this document, that Section 230, that immunity, is predicated on — as the title of this page says — neutrality” concluded Sen. Cruz.

Google’s representative admitted that his company produced the document, but downplayed it as “thought experiment.”

2) Google’s manually curated YouTube blacklists

Breitbart News also recently revealed that Google-owned YouTube also curates a number of blacklists relating to certain topics ranging from abortion to the federal reserve. The federal reserve terms were added to YouTube’s blacklist following a series of tweets from MSNBC host Chris Hayes. Breitbart News reported:

Google allegedlyadded the search term “Federal Reserve” to a “blacklist” file of “controversial” YouTube search queries. This caused search results for the term to be re-ranked to favor YouTube-approved mainstream media sources.

Breitbart News exclusively reported on the existence of the YouTube search blacklist in January and revealed that the term “abortion” had been added to it.

According to the same source who provided Breitbart with that information, the term “Federal Reserve” has also been on the blacklist since September of last year – and it’s all because someone at Google read a series of Chris Hayes tweets.

3) Dr. Robert Epstein’s extensive work on Google’s election manipulation

Dr. Robert Epstein, the senior research psychologist at the American Institute for Behavioral Research and Technology, has done a number of studies on Google’s ability to shift votes and elections. Epstein recently appeared on Breitbart News Daily alongside Breitbart News Editor-in-Chief Alex Marlow to discuss this:

Marlow discussed Epstein’s research saying: “I think you put out some pretty hard data on how many votes you think were moved in the 2016 election and I think you estimated it was over two million or so, is that not the case?” Epstein responded: “Well it was at least 2.6 million and it could have been as many as 10.4 million depending on how aggressive google was in using the various tools they have available to them to shift votes. I can’t pin it down exactly but I know it’s in that range.”

Epstein explained why monitoring search results and auto-suggest terms is so important when monitoring election interference, stating: “If you don’t monitor, you can’t go back in time and figure out what these companies were showing people because what they’re showing people is ephemeral. That’s the term that Google’s own employees use internally, they’re showing ephemeral experiences, those really short-lived experiences that kind of appear before your eyes and then disappear, like search results for example.”

A report from Dr. Epstein published in 2016 showed that Google appeared to favor positive autocomplete search results relating to Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election, even when search terms critical of Clinton were actually more popular at the time. Epstein’s report revealed that Google manipulated search results related to Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election that had the potential to “shift as many as 3 million votes” according to Epstein.

Epstein along with his colleagues at the American Institute for Behavioral Research (AIBRT) became interested in a video published by Matt Lieberman of Sourcefed which claimed that Google searches suppressed negative information about Hillary Clinton while other search engines such as Bing and Yahoo showed accurate results.

Epstein and AIBRT tested hundreds of different search terms related to the 2016 election, using Yahoo and Bing search as a control. Epstein’s report stated:

It is somewhat difficult to get the Google search bar to suggest negative searches related to Mrs. Clinton or to make any Clinton-related suggestions when one types a negative search term. Bing and Yahoo, on the other hand, often show a number of negative suggestions in response to the same search terms. Bing and Yahoo seem to be showing us what people are actually searching for; Google is showing us something else — but what, and for what purpose?

As for Google Trends, as Lieberman reported, Google indeed withholds negative search terms for Mrs. Clinton even when such terms show high popularity in Trends. We have also found that Google often suggests positive search terms for Mrs. Clinton even when such terms are nearly invisible in Trends. The widely held belief, reinforced by Google’s own documentation, that Google’s search suggestions are based on “what other people are searching for” seems to be untrue in many instances.

Google tries to explain away such findings by saying its search bar is programmed to avoid suggesting searches that portray people in a negative light. As far as we can tell, this claim is false; Google suppresses negative suggestions selectively, not across the board. It is easy to get autocomplete to suggest negative searches related to prominent people, one of whom happens to be Mrs. Clinton’s opponent.

Epstein then hypothesized that Google directly altered search results in an attempt to influence the 2016 election:

Without whistleblowers or warrants, no one can prove Google executives are using digital shenanigans to influence elections, but I don’t see how we can rule out that possibility. There is nothing illegal about manipulating people using search suggestions and search rankings — quite the contrary, in fact — and it makes good financial sense for a company to use every legal means at its disposal to support its preferred candidates.

A report from Epstein in March of 2019 claimed that the Google could have flipped seats for the Democrats in midterm elections. Breitbart News reported at the time:

Epstein says that in the days leading up to the 2018 midterms, he was able to preserve “more than 47,000 election-related searches on Google, Bing, and Yahoo, along with the nearly 400,000 web pages to which the search results linked.”

Analysis of this data showed a clear pro-Democrat bias in election-related Google search results as compared to competing search engines. Users performing Google searches related to the three congressional races the study focused on were significantly more likely to see pro-Democrat stories and links at the top of their results.

As Epstein’s previous studies have shown, this can have a huge impact on the decisions of undecided voters, who often assume that their search results are unbiased. Epstein has called this the Search Engine Manipulation Effect (SEME).

According to Epstein’s study, at least 35,455 undecided voters in the three districts may have been persuaded to vote for a Democrat candidate because of slanted Google search results. Considering that each vote gained by a Democrat is potentially a vote lost by a Republican, this means more than 70,910 votes may have been lost by Republicans in the three districts due to Google bias. In one of these districts, CA 45, the Democrat margin of victory was just over 12,000 votes.

Google’s bias has been apparent for some time, the firm has taken a number of actions against conservative news sites such as labeling Breitbart News a “fringe domain” to kicking the Gateway Pundit and Conservative Tribune out of news results. Google executives have displayed open dismay and even tears at the election of President Trump.

4) Peter Schweizer Exposed Google with The Creepy Line

Peter Schweizer discussed the influence of Google at a Breitbart News Town Hall event in April of 2018 stating:

It is really interesting when you look at all of the warnings about technology over the last century, the biggest dystopian novels, 1984, and Brave New World, tt was about the government controlling and manipulating technology. I do not think anyone envisioned it would be these two large companies that would use these technologies to control.

“With Google, it is different. It’s softer, they are still trying to steer, manipulate, and direct us in ways that they want to go,” Schweizer added.

Schweizer then said, “Part of the problem is that they do not define what evil is.”

Schweizer then explained that Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt once said that the technology giant would move the company towards, but not cross, the “creepy line” of what the company does with their technology.

“Eric Schmidt said that they would go right up until the creepy line but not cross it,” Schweizer revealed. “Which is funny because you would think that people in power would not want to get close to that creepy line.”

Schweizer explored Google’s bias in his own documentary, The Creepy Line, released in October of last year:

The Creepy Line is a new feature-length documentary that explores how Silicon Valley tech companies can use their vast influence to crack down on speech and undermine democracy. The film focuses specifically on Facebook and Google, and analyzes exactly what these companies do once they have unlimited access to user’s data. The film uses first-hand accounts, scientific experiments, and detailed analysis to explore the risks of allowing these two tech giants free reign over the personal information of millions of people.

The title of the documentary is lifted directly from the words of former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, when during an interview in 2010 he explained Google’s code of conduct: “The Google policy on a lot of things is to get right up to the creepy line and not cross it.”

The new feature-length documentary is directed by M.A. Taylor and features interviews with prominent figures such as Dr. Jordan Peterson, Dr. Robert Epstein of the American Institute for Behavioral Research and Technology and Peter Schweizer, President of the Government Accountability Institute and author of Clinton Cash. 

The Creepy Line documentary can be rented or purchased on iTunes and is also available through Amazon Prime.

Far from being “without evidence,” there is a large amount of evidence of Google’s manipulation which is growing on a daily basis.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolanor email him at [email protected]

https://www.breitbart.com/tech/2019/08/06/4-facts-about-donald-trumps-claim-that-google-is-meddling-in-elections/

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,