Eric Schmidt has made news with his latest announcement that Google is working on ways to “derank” Russian media in the search engine’s results.
At this weekend’s Halifax International Security Forum in Canada, Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google and current executive Chairman of Alphabet Inc., discussed Google’s efforts to deal with the apparent rise of fake news. Specifically, Schmidt was talking about how the search engine giant might limit the spread of “Russian Propaganda.” Mr. Schmidt said Google might “derank” fake news stories, going as far as mentioning Russian news stations Russia Today (RT) and Sputnik.
“We are working on detecting and deranking those kinds of sites – it’s basically RT and Sputnik,” Schmidt said. “We are well of aware of it, and we are trying to engineer the systems to prevent that [the content being delivered to wide audiences]. But we don’t want to ban the sites – that’s not how we operate.”
PLENARY 6: SATELLITE ARMIES: THE RACE IN SPACE and HALIFAX CHAT – featuring Ms. Theresa Hitchens, Gen. John Hyten, Ms. Julie Perkins The Boeing Company, Dr. Rajeswari Rajagopalan, Ms. Jeanne Meserve (Moderator) and also featuring Alphabet CEO Dr. Eric Schmidt and Mr. Jonathan Tepperman (Moderator)
Posted by Halifax International Security Forum on Saturday, November 18, 2017
Schmidt said Google was not in favor of censorship, but would rather focus on ranking. “I am very strongly in favor of ranking. It’s what we do,” he stated. “It’s a very legitimate question as to how we rank, A or B, right? And we do the best we can in millions and millions of rankings every day.”
The comments about Russian state-owned media broadcasting in English to Americans are the latest consequence of the continued propaganda about Russians “hacking” or “interfering” with the 2016 election. The media claims Russia hacked the Democratic National Committee and used WikiLeaks to disseminate the information to the American public. Even if the DNC was hacked by a hacker originating in Russia there has never been any evidence that “the Russians” forced Americans to vote one way or the other.
The corporate media continues to push the narrative despite the biggest bombshell being that Russian intelligence agencies MAY have created FB accounts for the purpose of creating ads aimed at influencing Americans’ election choices. Releasing factual information barely counts as “interference” and does not qualify as hacking by any stretch of the imagination. Regardless, the American politicians and compliant media push forth with the narrative that the Russians stole the election from the American people. As part of this blame game, Twitter recently announced they would no longer accept ads from RT and Sputnik. Just last week RT had to register as a “foreign agent” with the US Department of Justice or face fines and confiscation of property.
Interestingly, Schmidt stated that the 2016 election shows that American audiences are incapable of distinguishing between fake news and real news. Instead, Schmidt believes it is up to tech-giants and their buddies in the government to decide what stories the people are allowed to see and read.
“We started with the default American view that ‘bad’ speech would be replaced with ‘good’ speech, but the problem found in the last year is that this may not be true in certain situations, especially when you have a well-funded opponent who is trying to actively spread this information,” Schmidt stated at the forum.
The idea that both Trump and Clinton were not backed by powerful, wealthy interests is laughable. Both the Democratic and Republican corporate parties are beholden to forces with power and connections beyond the imagination of the average American. Schmidt himself is one of the wealthiest people on the planet worth an estimated $12 billion. In 2012 he was an adviser on digital operations for the Obama campaign and, according to John Podesta’s emails, Schmidt offered the same services to Hillary Clinton’s campaign in 2015.
Sputnik and RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan responded to Eric Schmidt’s comments with the following statement:
Good to have Google on record as defying all logic and reason: facts aren’t allowed if they come from RT, ‘because Russia’ – even if we have Google on Congressional record saying they’ve found no manipulation of their platform or policy violations by RT.
In reality, the comments by Eric Schmidt and the fake news meme have always been about controlling or limiting the reach of the independent and alternative media which offers a contrary perspective to the statist, corporatist deadstream media. If Americans stand by and do nothing as the Russian alt media comes under attack you better be prepared for the day that Eric Schmidt and/or the American political class announce the “deranking” of alternative views about 9/11, vaccinations, the weather, the food, the water, the environment, the wars, or the Surveillance/Police State. Google, YouTube, FB, and Twitter are the establishment social media tools. If we centralize all of our efforts through these platforms we are setting ourselves up for failure.
Derrick Broze is an investigative journalist and liberty activist. He is the Lead Investigative Reporter for ActivistPost.com and the founder of the TheConsciousResistance.com. Follow him on Twitter. Derrick is the author of three books: The Conscious Resistance: Reflections on Anarchy and Spirituality and Finding Freedom in an Age of Confusion, Vol. 1 and Finding Freedom in an Age of Confusion, Vol. 2
Derrick is available for interviews. Please contact Derrick@activistpost.com
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