Google’s sacred algorithm can’t be changed or even have its results filtered … even though the first search result for Martin Luther King is a hate-filled white supremacist pack of lies.
What the site says
The site includes typical anti-Semitic nonsense (“who really owns America,” and so forth) as well as accusations that MLK was a plagiarist, a cheater, and a “sexual degenerate, an America-hating Communist, and a criminal betrayer of even the interests of his own people.” It also refers to MLK as “the beast.” This is not exactly the site that you want kids going to for resources on Martin Luther King.
Google won’t adjust the results
There’s always going to be crap online … it’s the nature of the beast. The problem in this case is that the crap is not buried down in the pile, it’s the first link from Google. Implicitly, then, Google is saying that this is a trusted link.
The algorithm is king. The results stand.
But even upon multiple requests – including one from AOL – Google will not adjust the rankings, or remove the hate site from its listings. Elinor Mills reports that a Google representative responded with “in this particular example, the page is relevant to the query and many people have linked to it, giving it more PageRank than some of the other pages. These two factors contribute to its ranking.”
The algorithm is king. The results stand. Google won’t artificially change search results – even when they’ve been gamed by neo-nazis linking to propaganda.
Or will they?
What about Google China?
If Google won’t change its algorithm, and if the algorithm’s search results are sancrosact … what about China? Isn’t that exactly what they’ve done in China?
Google China routinely and continuously self-censors search results to keep things that the totalitarian Chinese government doesn’t want its citizens to know secret, hidden, burried.
Is this evil?
What’s the difference? Could it be all the money that Google hopes to make in China?
And if so, could that possibly be just a little bit evil?[tags] google, evil, china, MLK, martin luther king, hate, white supremacist, nicholas carr, c|net, john koetsier [/tags]