MORE ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA MANIPULATION

Earlier today I blogged about Google’s Scott Byer’s rationale for intentionally manipulating the information flow to minimize what he considered non-news sources (conservative websites, of course).

But there’s more.

From Tyler O’Neil’s article at pjmedia.com:

On Thursday, the Daily Caller’s Peter Hasson reported leaked emails showing Google executives scheming to isolate conservative news sites in the wake of the 2016 election. Dr. Robert Epstein, a Ph.D. psychologist who focuses on search engine manipulation, warned that Google’s attempts to manipulate public opinion are more terrifying than the Chinese government’s attempts to control its citizens.

China’s government seems intent to implement George Orwell’s “1984” with facial recognition, data mining, a social credit system, and roving electronic “doves” to watch over citizens. Yet Epstein finds Google more terrifying, partially due to the recent leak.

“To me. [China’s manipulation] is scary, but people are aware of it. It’s done openly by the government. I think what is happening elsewhere in the world that’s being driven mostly by Google I think is much more dangerous, because it’s mostly invisible,” Epstein, whose research features prominently in the recent film “The Creepy Line,” told PJ Media Friday.

“There’s no transparency, there’s no accountability,” he added. “It’s a more ambitious kind of surveillance than that of the Chinese government.”

Is Dr. Epstein right in his assessment that google and other such websites’ manipulations are more dangerous than what China is doing to control (maybe “own” is a more apt word) its population?

We can argue this possibility back and forth.  But what seems unarguable is that both are intolerable and unacceptable.

There’s not much the United States government can do about what is happening in China.  But there damn well better be something done about what is happening here.  And the sooner the better – before it’s too late.

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