Google has quietly escalated censorship of its market-dominant search engine, and has added a number of new topics where human moderates are allowed to penalize websites manually, and suppress them in search results.
If a site is affected by one of these manual censorships, “some or all of the site will not appear in Google’s search results,” according to the technology giant.
The list, published in its entirety on the Google Support Website, contains the following:
- Discover policy violations: adult content
- Violation of news and discovery policies: Dangerous content
- Violation of News and Discovery Policies: Harassment Content
- Violation of news and discovery policies: Hateful content
- News and Discovery Policy Violation: Manipulated Media
- Violations of news and discovery policies: medical content
- Detect policy violations: misleading content
- Violation of news and discovery policies: Sexually explicit content
- Violation of news and discovery policies: terrorist content
- Violation of news policy: Transparency
- News and discover violations of the guidelines: Violence and content in the blood
- News and discover policy violations: Vulgar language and swearing
Publishers who have been hit by a manual action by Google will be able to appeal the decision by “fixing”
There was a time when Google tried to hide censorship of searches. Alphabet chief Sundar Pichai insisted under oath before the congress that the company does not “intervene manually on any particular search result”, a statement that one of Google’s own former employees said was a lie.
Leaks such as the “Good Censor” briefing and YouTube’s search lists, both published by Breitbart News, went viral because they revealed manual censorship of search results, especially political search results, and contrary to Pichai’s statements, occurred regularly at Google.
However, as Republicans failed to inflict any consequences on Google or other technology companies for their growing political disruption and erosion of Americans’ ability to exercise their rights for the first change online, Google and other technology companies became less concerned about hiding their censorship.
Analysis of Breitbart News also revealed that Google suppressed links to conservative news sites, including Breitbart, in a search for “Biden” and “Joe Biden” before the 2020 election – but this was partly discovered by analyzing data from Google’s own publisher console, a sign of how relaxed the technology giant has become about the political disturbance being discovered.
Allum Bokhari is a senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. His new book, # DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election, which features exclusive interviews with sources in Google, Facebook and other technology companies, is currently available for purchase.