In our opinion: A probe into Google is justified, but not for the reasons the Trump administration might think

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  • Mike Richards South Jordan, UT
    Sept. 9, 2018 9:22 a.m.

    Google is not a public utility. It is a private company. As a private company, it can do almost whatever it wants.

    However, the Left has demanded that little companies, like bakeries in Colorado, be forced to serve all people regardless of the desires of the owners of those companies. Surely, the Left would also demand that Google be forced to give unbiased answers to all questions presented to the search engine. Surely the Left would not lie to us by telling us that Google does not slant everything political to the extreme Left.

    Even a school child can Google "Obama's attack on Trump" and see that the sources cited are pro-Obama and anti-Trump. That same school child can just as easily Google "Trump's response to Obama's attack", and they will get the same pro-Obama, anti-Trump sources.

    Google does not need to be censored but it does need to be condemned by every American who believes in fairness and equality.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Sept. 9, 2018 8:38 a.m.

    It's google. A private outfit. It does what it does; if you don't like it I suppose you can still use Ask Jeeves or gopher or mamma. Remember them? How about yahoo?

    Why are people worried if they don't get exactly what they want out of a search? Shouldn't they already know where to go to find the news they want to hear? And, aside from echoing fox as he always does, why does trump expect his reflection to be better than the nasty reality?

  • silo Sandy, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 1:55 p.m.

    @ridal
    "it is about observing and objectively testing the bias in the results."

    There is no 'bias' in the results other than what the users of Google bring to Google. Observe and test all you'd like, but the results you see are what your peers are clicking on, not what Google as a company is stacking based on bias.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 1:33 p.m.

    So Google is now a public utility? Is Google the only search provider and email service provider available to you?

    If you don't like Google - don't use it. There are many other email hosts out there. There are many other search engines out there.

    For a bunch of free market experts, conservatives are pretty hypocritical when it comes to Google.

  • furymouse Draper, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 12:08 p.m.

    @casual observer

    So you're saying that there should be some sort of rules or regulations that the government would force on a private company?

  • NeifyT Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 11:49 a.m.

    Of course an opinion piece by journalists is going to be biased toward their view of journalism... but in the line: "assuming the creator of the content followed the traditional journalistic values of balance and objectivity," I find that assumption hard to swallow.

    True Journalism died a long long time ago. It is extremely rare to find a journalist that actually follows the values of balanced reporting and objectivity of factual information.

    It used to be said "just the fact Mam;" but journalists these days never stick to facts, even outside of the opinion/editorial section; they always only use the "facts" that fit their agenda; always painting a specific picture; rather than allowing the reader to make their own judgements. Even when they state the facts; they use lot of propaganda to push their own narrative of the events; often spinning and twisting those facts to the exact opposite of reality.

    It is easy to see in every news article propaganda being used such as: Emotional Words, Bandwagon, Testimonials, Card-Stacking, and Common Touch--to name the most common. And then the headline writers are even worse; especially online media which gravitate toward click-bait for $.

  • casual observer Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 11:32 a.m.

    The potential for abuse is too great. Google should function under the same rules as any public utility and not receive any special exemptions.

  • RiDal Sandy, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 11:02 a.m.

    @silo:
    I believe you may have missed the point. It is not about whether I "like" the results of google searches; it is about observing and objectively testing the bias in the results.

  • silo Sandy, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 10:19 a.m.

    @Ridal
    "It does seem like a liberal spin is always the top result on any topic"

    Googles search algorithms are not dramatically different than any other search engine from Bing, DuckDuckGo, or dozens of others.

    The algorithm is self learning in that whenever someone searches on a term or string, then clicks a link in the results, that clicked link is weighted more for any future searches on the same term or string.

    If searches on Trump return negative results, it's because people searching on those terms are clicking the negative links more often and weighting them more.

    If you don't like what google returns, use a different search engine, change the search string, or dig deeper into the results.

  • RiDal Sandy, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 8:48 a.m.

    Bias in google searches is difficult for an individual to test, because we don't know the full extent of their search algorithms. It does seem like a liberal spin is always the top result on any topic, but of course that could be defended by claiming that the "liberal spin" has the most factual backup, without the searcher ever really knowing the truth. But it is very easy to test the bias at CNN, NBC, ABC, etc message boards. I am very careful to never use personal insults or profanity of any time, yet I have been banned from all of them simply for posting conservative opinions. Yet one can easily observe the personal insults posted against conservatives that do not get banned. Any unbiased observer can easily test this for themselves. They are obviously trying to create an echo chamber and not let any alternative interpretations or opinions be known.

  • utahcoyote Saint George, UT
    Sept. 7, 2018 8:45 a.m.

    there is a certain irony when you hear people like trump complaining about social media bias in companies like google. trump uses social media to belittle, bully and threaten as much as anyone in the united states. they are definitely not limiting his access or what he is saying.

    trump basically wants to have it both ways. he can say what he wants, and he also wants to be able to restrict what americans have access to~~if its different from his own opinions. there is choice for everyone via companies like google. you can structure your query however you want, and it changes the results that google returns. seems to me that this is just more "fake news" from donald trump.