Tuesday, 25 June 2019 09:25

Google in bid to prevent 'repeat of 2016', executive says Featured

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Google in bid to prevent 'repeat of 2016', executive says Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

The investigative journalism website Project Veritas has released video footage of a senior Google executive hinting that the company wants to do what it can to prevent a repeat in 2020 of what happened in 2016 – the election of Donald Trump.

Google's head of Responsible Innovation Jen Gennai was shown in the video, which was leaked by a Google insider, saying:

"[Democratic 2020 hopeful] Elizabeth Warren is saying we should break up Google. And like, I love her but she’s very misguided, like that will not make it better it will make it worse, because all these smaller companies who don’t have the same resources that we do will be charged with preventing the next Trump situation, it’s like a small company cannot do that.”

The insider told Project Veritas that Google was bent on not letting someone like Trump come to power again.

This is the second video that has surfaced since Trump's election, showing that Google's officials favour the Democrats.

Last September, the right-wing website Breitbart published a video of a meeting at Google in the week which brought Trump to power. It showed a distracted and visibly upset set of top officials and also revealed the degree of disconnect between the top brass at the search engine company and the rest of the world.

The founder of Project Veritas, James O'Keefe, said: "This is the third tech insider who has bravely stepped forward to expose the secrets of Silicon Valley.

"These new documents, supported by undercover video, raise questions of Google’s neutrality and the role they see themselves fulfilling in the 2020 elections.”

The Google insider who leaked the video told O'Keefe that the company was tweaking its artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms to keep them in line with its concept of fairness.

He said: "They’re going to redefine a reality based on what they think is fair and based upon what they want, and what and is part of their agenda.”

Gennai was seen in the video saying: "The reason we launched our AI principles is because people were not putting that line in the sand, that they were not saying what’s fair and what’s equitable so we’re like, well we are a big company, we’re going to say it.”

Leaked documents from the same insider also showed that Google apparently has new editorial guidelines to control how content is displayed.

Gennai told Veritas: "We have gotten accusations... around fairness.. that we’re unfair to conservatives because we’re choosing what we find as credible news sources and those sources don’t necessarily overlap with conservative sources.”

iTWire has contacted Google for comment.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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