The next time you hear a conservative news organization claim that the social media behemoths are biased against them, you should believe it.
Not only has a number of studies and analyses proven the claim, but there is also a boatload of anecdotal evidence building as well.
Take the case of April Glaser, a reporter for the uber-Left-wing site Slate. What she tweeted last week is incredible, and it should serve as a case study in disproving claims by the social media giants that allegations of bias by conservatives are unfounded.
As reported by Information Liberation, Glaser said she wrote to Google recently to complain that the platform’s search results on YouTube (which Google owns) for “abortion” were mostly from pro-life sites that she said contained “dangerous information.”
She went on to note that after she complained, the video platform “changed the results.”
“Search for ‘abortion’ on YouTube last week and the top results were a horrifying mix of gore and dangerous information. YouTube changed the results after I asked,” she wrote.
Search for "abortion" on YouTube last week and the top results were a horrifying mix of gore and dangerous misinformation. YouTube changed the results after I asked https://t.co/sNjQncSrNS
— april glaser (@aprilaser) December 21, 2018
If her story is true, not only is it evidence of social media bias against conservative, pro-life views, it means Google is more than willing to suppress information it finds ideologically objectionable, not factually incorrect.
‘Dangerous information’ to the Left is often equated with false information, but that isn’t necessarily correct. While some information from a pro-life perspective can be and sometimes is incorrect, the same can certainly be said of information that comes from sites supportive of abortion. And in fact, ‘establishment’ news organizations sympathetic to the “pro-choice” perspective are guilty of publishing news that is outright false.
Simply requesting (demanding?) that YouTube change its search results wasn’t enough; Glaser then went on to write a piece for Slate claiming that the video site’s results “show exactly what anti-abortion activists want women to see,” including “gory videos rife with misinformation.” (Related: Texas congressman wants social media firms held accountable for biased censorship of speech.)
Censoring the ‘wrong’ search results
When you Google “abortion,” the top results are relatively staid considering the divisiveness of the topic in American life. There’s a link to information about the procedure from Planned Parenthood, a Google map of nearby abortion providers, a link to an overview of anti-abortion and pro-choice arguments from the nonpartisan procon.org, and links to various news sources like the New York Times and the New Yorker.
If, until recently, you did the same over on Google-owned YouTube, it felt like you were searching in a whole other universe.
There, Glaser wrote, “the top search results for ‘abortion’…were almost all anti-abortion—and frequently misleading.”
Oh, but The New York Times and The New Yorker are paragons of truth and virtue.
Of course, they aren’t. And again, it’s not like pro-life sites have not been incorrect or even misleading in the past. But what YouTube has done, at Glaser’s request apparently, is deprive users of information, period. And while all information isn’t valuable, it is also not “dangerous” to give people all sides of an issue.
That’s especially true when it comes to abortion. The issue is so polarizing that limiting information can be more harmful to the debate than providing ‘too much.’
What this really sounds like is that Glaser was upset about the fact that information injurious to her pro-abortion worldview was as prevalent and readily available as it was on YouTube. Because after YouTube made changes to its algorithm to ‘suit’ Glaser, she noted in her piece that new searches for “abortion” produced news sources and video content that she found more appealing and ‘correct.’
It should come as no surprise that the Left has politicized search results because the Left politicizes everything. And as is evident from this sad episode, the social media behemoths are willing accomplices in the censorship of certain points of view.
Find news that isn’t censored by search results or anything else at Censored.news.