Google manually manipulates search results in an effort to exclude conservative websites, such as the American Spectator, the Conservative Tribune, and the Gateway Pundit, according to documents leaked to the Daily Caller.
The documents leaked to the Daily Caller, which were reportedly approved by Google executives who report directly to CEO Sundar Pichai, detail two Google policies, known as the “misrepresentation policy” and the “good neighbor policy,” which determine what websites end up in the “XPA news blacklist.”
“T&S [Trust & Safety team] will be in charge of updating the blacklist as when there is a demand,” declared one document leaked to the Caller. “The deceptive_news domain blacklist is going to be used by many search features to filter problematic sites that violate the good neighbor and misrepresentation policies.”
“The purpose of the blacklist will be to bar the sites from surfacing in any Search feature or news product. It will not cause a demotion in the organic search results or de-index them altogether,” the document explained
According to the Daily Caller, a “manual review tool” is also “involved in maintaining the blacklist,” which includes “Gateway Pundit, Matt Walsh’s blog, Gary North’s blog ‘teapartyeconomist.com,’ Caroline Glick’s website, Conservative Tribune, a property of The Western Journal and the website of the American Spectator.”
In a statement, Google responded to the report, declaring, “We do not manually determine the order of any search result, nor do our algorithms or policies attempt to make any judgment on the political leanings of a website. Our Google News inclusion policies are publicly available online. They provide guidelines on content and behaviors for matters like sponsored content, deceptive practices, and more. Sites that do not adhere to these policies are not eligible to appear on news surfaces or in information boxes in Search. These policies do not impact the way these sites appear in organic blue-link Google Search results.”
In December, Google CEO Sundar Pichai claimed during a hearing before Congress, “we don’t manually intervene on any particular search result.”
Last year, a Google document titled “The Good Censor” was leaked to Breitbart News.