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Google's Challenge, The Increasingly Political Web

     
7:16 pm on Mar 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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With the Internet poised to be the "epicenter" of the 2008 elections, Google is contemplating how best to keep candidate information readily accessible without allowing the Web to transform into a giant tabloid.

One major question the company faces is how to "provide a platform for free expression without exacerbating the ugliness," Elliot Schrage, the company's vice president of global communications, said at the annual Politics Online Conference here Thursday afternoon.

Schrage pointed to what he called a "disturbing" video posted by a YouTube user that featured the late son of presidential hopeful John Edwards. He said the company, after much contemplation, ultimately decided it was not in a position to remove it.

Google's Challenge, The Increasingly Political Web [news.zdnet.com]

7:24 pm on Mar 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Since when is it G's task to maintain the esthetics of the web? ("..without allowing the Web to transform into a giant tabloid.")

WBF

8:57 pm on Mar 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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If they start censoring, they become the judge of what is censorable. Do you really want computer geeks deciding what is morally or aesthetically acceptable? Let the public do that via lawyers or democracy.

Mind you Google is already doing quite a lot of judging already, with their quality scores, human reviewing and deciding what sources they deem worthy for Google News.

A "burying" system ala digg would let them off the hook in many situations, as would taking a reactive approach to public complaints.

1:31 am on Mar 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Google should do business the same as they would any other day. Unless the are trying to lobby a bit.
7:36 am on Mar 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Confirms everything bad everyone says about Google. Maybe they think the capital G belongs to them.
8:47 am on Mar 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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"Google is contemplating how best to keep candidate information readily accessible without allowing the Web to transform into a giant tabloid."

Easy. Just create one web page with links to the candidates websites and then post the link to the page on the Google homepage. Problem solved. No need to over engineer it.

12:05 pm on Mar 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Making these remarks about the 2008 US presidential elections is a strange standing point in itself. Why are these any more important than other elections or other political events, about which Google makes no comments? I think Google is underlining the point of view that the American president is the leader of the planet and that it concerns the entire planet. Google.COM is still a worldwide search engine and not specifically American!
9:54 pm on Mar 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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the point of view that the American president is the leader of the planet

HAHAHAHAHAHA. Does anyone still subscribe to that view?

I agree that Google should pay no more attention to this election than it does to any other.

Outside contractors who are brought into a library with the brief to compile a computerised index of what is in the library should put their index together without worrying about what is in the library.

7:59 am on Mar 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

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ronin
the point of view that the American president is the leader of the planet
"HAHAHAHAHAHA. Does anyone still subscribe to that view?"

The Israeli Government
The Indonesian Government
The British Government
The South Korean Government
The Australian Government
The Afghan Government
The Iraqi "Government"
The Mexican Government
The Philippino Government

7:49 pm on Mar 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

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This post:
<removed>
references this:
<removed>

which seems to suggest censorship in google groups archives, although that could be just a problem with cross-posts, because the archives seem to be incomplete in certain places. For example look at the number of posts in alt.tv.simpsons from april to december 1995:
[groups.google.com...]

Also I seem to remember that google censored a lot of extreme left posts in google groups after the democratic party lost in 2004?

Ah, yes, here it is [groups.google.com]

[edited by: jatar_k at 12:27 pm (utc) on Mar. 19, 2007]
[edit reason] no blog links thanks [/edit]