Google and its video platform YouTube is coming under fire from both the right and left side of the political spectrum over their censorship practices, with more and more people urging the U.S. government to designate it a "utility" so it will fall under the regulatory oversight that other monopolies do, and as of a September 1, 2017 tweet, we see a main search competitor, DuckDuckGo, announce they have seen massive gains in search requests, showing that more and more people are forgoing the use of Google in favor of a search engine that does not censor and manipulate their results.
The numbers to the right represent what DuckDuckGo's ranking is in both the U.S. and globally, the lower the number, the more traffic they are seeing and the numbers determine how they rank against all the other of millions upon millions of websites across the Internet.
They explain the numbers in the following manner: "The rank by country is calculated using a combination of average daily visitors to this site and pageviews on this site from users from that country over the past month. The site with the highest combination of visitors and pageviews is ranked #1."
There are number of issues contributing to the fact that more and more people are choosing an alternative to depending on Google, whether for search results, or video commentary, one of which is privacy issues, where Google is well known for collecting information from all users, DuckDuckGo highlights three points on the search page: 1) We don't store your personal info. 2) We don't follow you around with ads, and; 3) We don't track you. Ever.
GOOGLE'S MANIPULATION OF SEARCH RESULTS & CENSORSHIP PRACTICES
As was highlighted recently by Government Slaves website in an article titled "Bookmark This: Over 400 Links Google Doesn’t Want You To Visit," Google has made it their mission to annihilate the independent media, using their "guidelines" to determine what search results show up on their first pages, according to their own political ideology. GS specifically spotlights the following two points from Googles "Gestapo like 160-page handbook," via page 108, to show how Google intends to "suppress any information they deem unfit for readers ."
● Pages that directly contradict well established scientific or medical consensus for queries seeking scientific or medical information, unless the query indicates the user is seeking an alternative viewpoint.
● Pages that directly contradict well-established historical facts (e.g., unsubstantiated conspiracy theories), unless the query clearly indicates the user is seeking an alternative viewpoint.
This practice can clearly be seen when comparing the search results from a search engine like DuckDuckGo that does not manipulate the results, in comparison to the same search done using Google's search engine, as was highlighted by a Reddit user back in early August:
(Click the image or this link to enlarge image for better reading- opens in new tab)
I can personally attest to this practice getting increasingly manipulative as I use both Google and DuckDuckGo for all searches, just so I can confirm Google's bias.
Google's video platform is practicing the same type of manipulation of search results, as evidenced by their "redirecting" searches for terrorist activity, to produce anti-terrorism content. This is supposedly being done to stop YouTube from being used as a recruitment tool, but it also prevents users from accessing data on how violent extremists are recruiting, so if you are not someone looking to be recruited, but are for example, reporting on violent Islamic extremism, it is much more difficult to find evidence to prove your assertions.
They have also announced they would be "applying tougher treatment to videos that aren’t illegal but have been flagged by users as potential violations of our policies on hate speech and violent extremism. If we find that these videos don’t violate our policies but contain controversial religious or supremacist content, they will be placed in a limited state. The videos will remain on YouTube behind an interstitial, won’t be recommended, won’t be monetized, and won’t have key features including comments, suggested videos, and likes."
Earlier this week, Julian Assange wrote: "'Controversial' but contract-legal videos [which break YouTube's terms and conditions] cannot be liked, embedded or earn [money from advertising revenue].
"What's interesting about the new method deployed is that it is a clear attempt at social engineering. It isn't just turning off the ads.
"It's turning off the comments, embeds, etc too.
"Everything possible to strangle the reach without deleting it."
The Sun also highlights one of the more recent examples of YouTunes censorship, where a female, African America vlogger, username RedPillBlack, had a video removed, which has been reuploaded or restored now after public backlash against YouTube, had a video removed in where she read off a list of A BLM members "demands."
On Twitter, the vlogger RedPillBlack wrote: "What does it mean when a company owned by rich white ppl begins censoring black people? Is this the white nationalism I should be scared of?"
She added: "They said it was for harassment and bullying. I literally just read the girl's list [of demands] out loud."
RedPillBlack has followed up on this blatant censorship with another hard hitting video, discussing how Media outlets and social media platforms as well as YouTube, are pushing propaganda while censoring free speech.
Also this week, a right-wing website called The Liberty Conservative claims to have received a letter from Google threatening to suspend advertising revenue from the site unless it pulled down an article written by an organizer of last month’s white nationalist rally in Charlottesville.
“Yesterday morning, we received a very bizarre letter from Google issuing us an ultimatum,” Shane Trejo wrote in an article posted to The Liberty Conservative on Wednesday. “Either we were to remove a particular article or see all of our ad revenues choked off in an instant. This is the newest method that Big Brother is using to enforce thought control.”
Trejo claimed the article “contained no offensive content” and “was merely distinguishing the many differences between the alt-right and literal Nazis.”
Googles censorship has followed a systematic pattern: 1) Announce that they are going to block or censor "extremists" views; 2) Label any views that do not match Google's preferred narrative as "extremist." 3) Silence them all.
It is an information war.
BOTTOM LINE - NAME THEM AND SHAME THEM
Google censorship has hit a peak and social media users, subscribers to certain YouTube channels and independent media as a whole, has been fighting back and in many cases, winning, such as with the video that was removed for RedPillBlack, then restored or was allowed to be reuploaded, as explained below, "companies who implement measures that restrict freedom of speech must be continuously 'named and shamed'." The video also highlights that as long as companies continue to utilize these censorship practices they provide more of an argument for their critics to push for regulating them like public utilities. In his commentary he states clearly that regulation is "not something he is in favor of but it might be the only way to prevent things from getting much worse."
Last but not least, in the commentary below, the videographer makes another excellent point in that the independent Media has done an outstanding job as a whole, in holding the mainstream media accountable, calling them out on every lie, every bias and every "fake news" story they have pushed over the last couple of years, and that if we apply ourselves in the same manner of hammering home each egregious action on the part of social media and Google's biases, we can and have, forced them to backtrack on some decisions.
Suggestions: Chose an alternative search engine and use it consistently rather than Google. Here are a list of alternatives.
If your favorite website or YouTube channel announces they have been censored by Google in any way, take a few minutes out of your day and contact Alphabet, Inc., which is Googles parent company, bring your complaints directly to the top and encourage others to do the same.
If you have a Twitter account, complain to them publicly, meaning everyone can see your complaint, be factual and provide links proving your case, while adding their user tag, such as @TeamYouTube and @Google. If they try to get you to communicate with them through Direct Messaging (privately), refuse, because that is how they try to take the issue out of the public eye.
While the videographer below states that Independent Media will be vital to this information war, I submit it is the readers, the video subscribers and channel fans, that are more vital, because that raises the voice of one Independent Media platform into a hundred, a thousand, ten thousand voices, speaking as one.
It won't be easy and it will get worse before it gets better.