Internet corporations, thought policing, and you


Thomas Rousseau, Staff Cartoonist

In everyday life, it has become quite apparent that the large news media corporations often have a bias attached to them. It is becoming more and more clear that MSNBC or FOX News do not share the same side of the political spectrum.


Yet when something as universally used as Google comes to mind, subtle biases become harder to detect.


In fact, there is a vast amount of unseen tampering that can be done to sway public opinion with search results. There is reason to believe that such tampering is, and has been, taking place on the largest, near undisputed search engine Google.


This is also the case with other large social media outlets which share the left-of-center bias. Facebook recently had a scandal involving its “trending” topics which were admittedly biased against the right wing, although it masqueraded as unbiased news.


As for Twitter, the “best practices” are often enforced selectively, giving harsher punishments to the same breaches of standard to accounts espousing right wing speech.


A private company can censor whatever speech it deems unsuitable as according to its standards but this comes into question when the “standards” outlined are enforced only in certain cases when violated, and when the organization does not openly state its bias and instead decides to allow people to think it is neutral.


The majority of suburban America uses at least two if not all three of these outlets. The question is: how will the impressionable youth of the nation be affected? Studies have shown that the youth of this generation tend to be more liberal.


Google, Facebook and more recently Twitter have more power to sway opinion than any politician or interest group. Evidence suggests they can and have been using this power to noticeable effect.
Political signalling now permeates parts of life that didn’t exist before a few years ago and independent thought is being cornered out of the market. Opposition is bad for business and the mass media and technology corporations have noticed this and acted accordingly.