Google is Negligent in Allowing Vandalization But Fixing It is Tricky and Dangerous

Google is negligent by not having the software coded mechanisms to prevent or rapidly repair vandalization of search results.

People can use Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and other means to adjust search results. There are ways that people can manipulate search. This is a matter of concentrating resources and effort beyond to make a competition for ranking unfair to get the desired result.

An example of this in a different real-world situation would be a Hollywood studio spending millions of dollars to win the campaign for an Academy Award (aka Oscar). It costs about $10 million for a campaign to win Best Picture.

There are technical solutions for more manipulation resistant search. Google does release updates like the Panda update (the project name of last major search update) which invalidates old SEO methods.

The Oscar example is one where it is an ongoing marketing effort to come out on top in high-value competition. There is an economic and marketing battle to be the winner.

At the smaller scale, there are less costly gaming of less important lists. Search engine results are a lot of mini-competitions. Competitions over terms.

The Google business model is predicated on providing consumers with the right valuation of those listings which are generated in an automated way.

Manual adjusted search is worse than automated search as a business and as a service. This was shown when Yahoo lost to Google. Most people did not want to use Yahoo.

Google is technically capable of adding in automated parameters to rank how toxic an article on a webpage is. They are technically capable of using AI and programming to determine where something is on a political spectrum. They can use AI to recognize images and whether images have highly charged logos.

IBM has the Debater AI program which form automated arguments both for and against any topic.

Other companies that are far smaller than Google or IBM have automation to manage content with varying degrees of bias and toxicity.

Let us imagine that Google adds in a few more switches and parameters for this kind of management.

This will likely mean more lawsuits for Google. Every company and famous person would demand to micromanage their brand via the search results where they come up. There are lawsuits and many complaints now but enabling full control or a lot of outside control without massive care would be a bigger problem.

This would also end up with search results that serve the special interests of millions of companies. It would be search results sold to the highest bidder or the one with the most lawyers.

The overall pay for search results would be less useful to people and the users would go to a different search system. Google would not make more money from too much-paid or adjusted search since the money gained would be offset by lawsuit losses and would require far more staff and other expenses. They already have the separately paid advertising results.

This means the search result controls need to remain crude and broader. They need to be at the level of compliance with broad “universal” laws. All search companies have to be at the same national standards. Even though Google is the biggest and most dominant everywhere except China.

There are TV channels and other media who have voluntarily chosen very open bias as part of their business model. They are far smaller than Google. Google does not want to go from dominant to half or less.

Facebook has newsfeeds tailored for individuals. Twitter provides you only the tweet sources that you follow.

Google does provide customization of results based upon your profile if you login.

Those do not address the overall brand concerns. Companies and politicians do not care what they each will see in results. They care about what others are seeing.

10 thoughts on “Google is Negligent in Allowing Vandalization But Fixing It is Tricky and Dangerous”

  1. The best way to fix the problem with search is to give people control. We solved this problem by ranking the sources of information based in their focus, trustworthiness, and the reasons you trust (what we call trust factors). You can find our Ranking Information Providers patent online by searching for that and Agingo. It secure trustworthiness we created a new commercial blockchain platform from scratch that assesses it in an entirely new way that is transparent to you. See our video

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  2. Wow! Brian’s filter includes telling the truth about Google!

    …IN RESPONSE to an article that does the same!

    context: The SECOND attempt by me to bring up a topic about outright perjury committed by certain people (can’t say right now as this will get moderated too) was wiped out.

  3. I do SEO for living and while it’s true that you can still game the system, it’s getting really hard to do. And with hard I mean time and resource consuming.

  4. Would there be useful data based definitions. Some open source version of a neutrality ranking?

    Silicon Valley has political bias. Perhaps 75-25.

    OpenAI and other places will be spending a billion dollars to create friendly AI. Could there be useful definitions of neutrality or mathematically derived bias rankings?

    This seems unlikely because we have elections and election processes that have bias and manipulation.

    The difficulty of this problem also seems to be sub-problem of friendly AI.

    Dominant AGI that is evil, Dominant AGI that is biased. Can we solve friendly without also solving bias?

    AGI would only be “friendly” with the personality and position of Mr Rogers or Alfred the butler to Batman or Mary Poppins.

    Then you do not care about the political bias and views of the systems that remain in those roles.

  5. Yes. It’s trivially easy to compare search results between search engines, and demonstrate that Google has an absurdly heavy thumb on the scale for some searches; They provide such good results for topics that aren’t politically charged, (Not as good as they used to be, now that they’re catering to people who can’t construct proper search strings, but still good.) but if politics enter into it, their results suddenly bury the most responsive sites several pages down below frankly irrelevant results. While the other search engines just chug along, producing relevant results.

    There’s no way that isn’t a result of deliberate manipulation for political effect.

  6. I think Google execs flat out lying under oath before Congress that they don’t rig search results negatively for conservative links is a bigger problem.

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