President Trump’s Images Come Up When Users Google ‘Idiot’ & What Sundar Pichai Said To Congress
Jyotis - Dec 12, 2018
Whether there would be someone else manipulating every Google result users can possibly search for or not.
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In the US House Committee on the Judiciary on December 11th, Sundar Pichai had to give an explanation on the appearance of US President Donald Trump in the Google image search results with the keyword “idiot” as well as the possibility of purposefully political bias.
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) asked this question with the suspicion that Google search results are intentionally aiming to politics. She stated that when users were googling the keyword “idiot” to search corresponding images right now, pictures of US President Donald Trump would be among the results.
To answer this question, the Google CEO explained that, based on each offered keyword, Google would search from billions of pages on a variety of websites, compare and rank the results according to more than 200 various signals including popularity, freshness, relevance and more. Next, the most suitable search results will be found and ranked by Google itself and kept evaluating more by external raters to ensure the objectiveness.
What Pichai said didn’t clearly satisfy the Representative for California. She offered another sarcastic question whether there would be someone else manipulating every result users can possibly search for or not.
Pichai confirmed that Google hasn’t had any manual intervention with all the results on its search tools.
According to news outlets, Trump’s images have appeared at the top image search results since the beginning of 2018. At this time, when searching the keyword, you will, of course, see almost all of the pictures regarding this case. The reason behind it may be due to other parties that played a “Google bombing” game with the tech giant’s search engine.
In Google’s development history, there is also another US President with the same destiny with Donald Trump. It was George W. Bush, the 43rd US President in 2004. In that case, users got images about President Bush when searching the keyword “miserable failure.”
Coming back to Trump’s case, rival parties may link the word “idiot” to or upvote posts or images regarding the US President. Before Lofgren gave her doubts, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) offered the “undeniable” evidence that Google had suppressed its search results based on Robert Epstein (a Google critic)’s research project regarding Google’s politic bias. However, Mr. Smith also added that what the critic said were unscientific.
The explanation from the Google CEO Sundar Pichai can’t entirely release the company out of the political bias, but it’s enough to mark the appearance of an internet company into the history of Congress.