How Google's Algorithm Silences Minority Opinions

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by cocodrilo, May 8, 2014.

  1. cocodrilo
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    cocodrilo Well-Known Member

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    Google’s influence on society is both unparalleled and poorly understood. At last count in September of 2013, the company served over 3 billion searches per day. Most of us use Google, and we’re far more likely to click the top few results. If Google is determining what we’re more likely to read, and if reading can change belief, then Google’s algorithm can change millions of beliefs daily

    I myself have changed beliefs – and in one case my entire worldview – based on what I found through Google. I’m happier for it, but I can’t help thinking a few different top results may have changed the course of my life forever.

    http://highspeedinternet.com/blog/technology/how-googles-algorithm-silences-minority-opinions
  2. GT Gator
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    GT Gator Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, but that whole argument is generally silly. While I get what they're saying, the authors fail to point out any of the following:

    1. Prior to the widespread use of the Internet, the minority opinion (especially the fringe minority opinion) have virtually no voice whatsoever. The MSM nearly completely dictated what information was available. The Internet has completely opened up access to the nearly every opinion imaginable.

    2. Prior to Google, the dominant search provider was Yahoo. Yahoo's search was completely authored and controlled by Yahoo employees (as opposed to Google that is controlled by their algorithms). If the author thinks there is natural biases and suppression of minority opinions now, then he clearly has no memory of the Internet when Yahoo was running the show.

    3. Have you ever tried Google's alternatives? Google is so big and dominant; they've become scary (Can a monopoly really "Do no evil?"). So, I have been motivated to try alternatives. I've tried to make the switch to Bing, DuckDuckGo, WolframAlpha, Blekko, and others. Frankly, they all suck relative to Google and its not even close. The reason Google remains dominant is because their algorithms are head-and-shoulders better than any of their competitors.
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  3. wygator
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    wygator Well-Known Member

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    Al Gore's rhythm? Sounds like a contraception method...
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  4. cocodrilo
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    cocodrilo Well-Known Member

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    It's too bad Al Gore's parents didn't use it.
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  5. HallGator
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    HallGator Administrator VIP Member

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    But then we wouldn't have the Internet.
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  6. HallGator
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    I use Yahoo mainly anyway.
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  7. cocodrilo
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    cocodrilo Well-Known Member

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    Which would mean we would all be doing something more constructive than posting on THFSG.
  8. wygator
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    wygator Well-Known Member

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    exposed...
  9. HallGator
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    My wife would agree.
  10. GatorGrowl
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    GatorGrowl Forum Admin Staff Member GC Staff VIP Member

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    When I firs got on the internet in 1996 my search engine was Alta Vista....if you go there now it redirects to Yahoo.
  11. cocodrilo
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    cocodrilo Well-Known Member

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    When I first got on the internet about that same time, I wish I had bought some stock in Google (a handy thing to search with) along with Amazon.com (a handy way to buy books). I'd be a rich man today. But I didn't discover online trading till years later, which is why I'm still poor today.
  12. Gatorrick22
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    Gatorrick22 Well-Known Member

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    Google sucks... The are owned by the NSA et al.
  13. Gatorrick22
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    Gatorrick22 Well-Known Member

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    Yahoo owns 20% stock in Alibaba... something to think about.

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